Reader Ride: Sir Montalbon’s 540iT
Time for another edition of Daily Turismo’s Reader Rides, where reading or riding are optional and discouraged. Today’s subject comes to us from a regular DT commenter who goes by the name Sir Montalbon and has earned his title from an engine/trans swap in a long roof BMW. Sir Mont’s ride is a 1995 BMW 530i automatic wagon into which he swapped a 540i engine and 6-speed manual gearbox.
In his own words:
Year / Make / Model / Trim ? 1995 BMW 530iA touring, swapped to a 540i 6spd
How long have you owned it? About 5 years
Why did you buy it? I’d had always owned BMW’s and had a desire to work on them, but only having one car I was never able learn for fear of getting stuck and not having a car to get me to work. After
getting burned by a lemon e39, I bought a cheap Mazda Millenia and started saving for my first project. (P.S. I bought a house to complete this project since doing it in my aprtment parking lot didn’t
look too feasible. I like to think this was logical, but others don’t seem to follow my line of thinking?)
What do you use it for (commute, fun, racing…etc)? I usually drive it to work once a week, or to haul anything. I travel a good bit and it is my roadtrip car of choice.
Is it stock or modified? If modified, please list some modifications. Swapped to a M60B40 and 6spd on coilovers. Too many mods to remember. Big ones are the already mentinoed drivetrain swap, and visually, it is pretty much a Euro model after adding the headlight washers, Euro headlights, side trim, and plate.
What was the most memorable day in your car (proposed to wife, 3rd child born in back seat…etc)? Probably the moment it moved under its own power after the swap. It was the last day the DIY shop was
ever going to be open and I had about 2hrs before closing time. Driving it into the parking lot with open headers was pretty BA. Second place goes to 2012 Petite LeMans. I was blown away by the amount of attention it got. Up to that point, I just figured I was the weird guy who thought Euro sport wagons were cool.
What was the most catastrophic failure of parts/components? It has been pretty solid during my ownership. If I had to pick, I’d say it was this past December when the guibo exploded, taking out and
shorting my o2 wiring, thus requiring a tow.
What makes you want to keep owning this car? The fact that the e34 is one of the last BMW tanks, in my opinioin, and that it was one of the last BMWs with the classic 4 headlight front end styling. Also, that
the e34 wagon is one of the best looking longroofs I’ve ever seen.
Will you ever sell it? Haha, not if I have anything to do with it.
Got your own ride and want to share? Send us some pics. You can just free form your words,
or follow this questionaire.
Year / Make / Model / Trim ?
How long have you owned it?
Why did you buy it?
What do you use it for (commute, fun, racing…etc)?
Is it stock or modified? If modified, please list some modifications.
What was the most memorable day in your car (proposed to wife, 3rd child born in back seat…etc)?
What was the most catastrophic failure of parts/components?
What makes you want to keep owning this car?
Will you ever sell it?
Send your submissions to email@example.com
If you do ever sell it, make sure you give us the first bite at the apple. I love wagons. Especially fast ones.
I love this and how he did it all, nice work!
great job. every choice you made is perfect. congrats.
Thanks guys! Here's a build thread I put together with all the dirty details:
~ Great build thread, Thanks!
BMW has some of the best OEM wheels in the business. Good on you for keeping it all in the family.
Nice. Of course I'm partial to Alpineweiß 1995 E34 Tourings. I swapped mine to an S50/5.
Very nice. My DD is a '95 530iT with an M60B40/5-speed auto/3.15 LSD swap and it is an absolute blast to drive. A 6 speed manual and possibly a supercharger would be the only further things I would do with it.