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Thread: A decade later, and looking for advice

  1. #1
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    A decade later, and looking for advice

    Never posted much. Have had my Z8 from inception -- 17000 miles in 10 years. My daily driver is a 997 turbo, though I am in the process of selling it for a GT3 RS 3.8 -- back to a naturally aspirated car -- finally! The Z8 feels a bit aged to me, and lacking in oomph, though it remains as beautiful as ever. So here is my question: after a decade of experience, what are the key mods that are worth doing to add some zest to the low end torque delivered by the car? UCC shifter, LDS, Dinan? I am unlikely ever to sell the car; my son is 7, and I expect him to drive it in another decade. Input sorely needed.

  2. #2
    Z8Mania
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    Oh there are so many and so many people will tell you to do a search. But Ill try to short cut it for you.

    1. Do you have the performance package installed? Don't know what it is? See here:
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=679

    2. Clutch Delay Valve- do you still have it in your car? Easy to remove and a worthy improvement.
    http://www.zeckhausen.com/cdv.htm

    3. Power: the easiest thing to do is get the revised rear end - the stock is 3.38.. The revised many of us have is 3.64. And also many of us have gotten the LSD included with this. I don't know where the best place to get it today is though. In essence you'll get 8% more power through the tires and lose some top speed. More power can be achieved via the tuners like Dinan.

    4. The power of the car with the revised rear end began to feel like it was more than it could handle so I had the alpina suspension installed. A WORTH WHILE PROJECT!! It really helps the car. You want the European spec Alpina suspension- thats springs and shocks. You also want to replace the stock sway bars which is not included with the Alpina suspension and also the Dinan camber / caster plates. See more here:
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=735
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=149

    5. Fun things are exhaust. I have the eisenmann race exhaust others have the meistercraft- check it out.
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=1966

    And wheels, brakes , Im sure theres a short shift kit etc.

    Welcome back and I remember your posts from a long time ago. Keep us updated with what you're going to do.

  3. #3
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    There are a few threads about essential mods. But if you are looking for torque and "oomph". perhaps think about the Dinan major mods... more HP etc. Also the revised final drive ratio. I had a 997GT3RS, sold it, kept the Z8. Not as fast but ultimately more enjoyable? Perhaps enjoy the Z8 for what it is, and have another car for ultimate contemporary performance. The Z8 is plenty fast enough to get yourself in serious trouble. What would you do with more power? Kill yourself faster? Is 180mph not fast enough? The most important mod, by far is to adjust the nut behind the wheel. Ever spent time on the racetrack? What you will find, is the better driver will always beat you while driving a slower car. The Z8 has lot's to give that you have likely never tapped.

  4. #4
    Team Z8 JoshB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Z8Mania View Post
    Oh there are so many and so many people will tell you to do a search. But Ill try to short cut it for you.

    1. Do you have the performance package installed? Don't know what it is? See here:
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=679

    2. Clutch Delay Valve- do you still have it in your car? Easy to remove and a worthy improvement.
    http://www.zeckhausen.com/cdv.htm

    3. Power: the easiest thing to do is get the revised rear end - the stock is 3.38.. The revised many of us have is 3.64. And also many of us have gotten the LSD included with this. I don't know where the best place to get it today is though. In essence you'll get 8% more power through the tires and lose some top speed. More power can be achieved via the tuners like Dinan.

    4. The power of the car with the revised rear end began to feel like it was more than it could handle so I had the alpina suspension installed. A WORTH WHILE PROJECT!! It really helps the car. You want the European spec Alpina suspension- thats springs and shocks. You also want to replace the stock sway bars which is not included with the Alpina suspension and also the Dinan camber / caster plates. See more here:
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=735
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=149

    5. Fun things are exhaust. I have the eisenmann race exhaust others have the meistercraft- check it out.
    http://bmwz8.us/vbb/showthread.php?t=1966

    And wheels, brakes , Im sure theres a short shift kit etc.

    Welcome back and I remember your posts from a long time ago. Keep us updated with what you're going to do.
    I concur with all the above whole heartily with the addition of equal length headers, upgrade the clutch and do the full Dinan mods. You will have a car with about 460hp, better gearing and looks that will never go out of style. It will drive and perform like a different car.
    2002 Silver Black/Red

    Dinan stage 4 software
    Dinan low restriction carbon fiber airboxes
    Dinan high flow air mass meters
    Hamann headers
    Supersprint exhaust
    performance package
    custom short shift linkage
    cdv modifacation
    Quaiffe differential/military grade gear polishing
    19 inch 3 piece HRE mags/Toyo tires
    Custom crossdrilled/slotted rotors
    ceramic brake pads
    stainless brake lines
    Dinan caster plates
    Dinan duel mass flywheel
    custom Sachs clutch /pressure plate
    Dinan pedal set

  5. #5
    I'd say you should send it off to Dinan, and tell them you want them to bring it up to its fullest potential, and then you should be good.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  6. #6
    Z8Mania
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    I might do that one day. Right now I feel the power is more than enough for me. The car is just a delight.

  7. #7
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    You guys are terrific. I so much appreciate all the input. Gave my car to Avus in Glendale (authorized Dinan dealer), told them to do a full service, and to call me about next steps. Will keep you all posted. Loved the comment about the nut behind the wheel, as did my wife. Norcal -- do you really think the GT3 RS isnt worth buying? I love the rawness of that car. It would be my daily driver....

  8. #8
    Z8Mania
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    Yes there is no substitute for improving the most variable part of the car- you. In my case, when I got the Z8 I wasn't much of a skilled driver. I could shift fine and I liked a sports car's nimble handling, but I really didn't understand the elements of performance driving. Several driving schools and other automotive experiences later, I am much more proficient as a driver. Which, unfortunately, highlighted many of the Z8s shortcomings for me. I can tell you that the changes to the Alpina Suspension with the Dinan sway bars really helps- it doesn't turn it from a Z8-> GT3 or anything but it does take it to what Id call Z8 2.0. Its both more comfortable and more capable.

  9. #9
    And it's also about what you ask of it. The Z8 will never be a Nurbergring racer, though it did do it fraction faster than it's contemporaries, the e46 M3 and the regular 911. However having owned and sold many things that were much faster on a track, I can tell you none was such a pleasure to drive on a sunny Socal day as the Z8. Mine is quite heavilly modded as you can see here, but all in the handling and braking dept, my motor remians stock.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  10. #10
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nonplussed View Post
    You guys are terrific. I so much appreciate all the input. Gave my car to Avus in Glendale (authorized Dinan dealer), told them to do a full service, and to call me about next steps. Will keep you all posted. Loved the comment about the nut behind the wheel, as did my wife. Norcal -- do you really think the GT3 RS isnt worth buying? I love the rawness of that car. It would be my daily driver....
    Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the GT3!!!!!! Best car I ever had.... but my love for the Z8 as an open-air backroad burner, and the community here meat she stayed and the Pcar went. (too many cars in the driveway). I will probably get back into a GT3 at some point as a DD... there's plenty around. The Z8 will never leave me, if I have my way with life.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Norcal View Post
    Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the GT3!!!!!! Best car I ever had....
    I too have the hots for a GT3 RS (if only the Speedster were in my budget!!), but when I look at the depreciation and then see what the Z8 is doing... As I said before, the Z8 has now ruined every other car. Low mileage 2003 SL55s and Porsche Turbos can be had for under $40K. Yikes!
    C.A. Cardenas (AKA Dan)
    2003 (last one?) Z8 - Hellrot / Sport Rot
    Original Owner - Munich Tourist Delivery
    -- Others --
    1988 M6 - 32K mi. - Original Owner
    1989 DINAN 750iL - 73K mi. - Original Owner
    1998 M3 - 63K mi. - Original Owner
    2015 X5 (F15) Diesel - Daily Driver

  12. #12
    I loved my GT3 at the track, but honestly I didn't really like it that much anywhere else, and I didn't really care that much for being seen in a Porsche. At the gas station you can see the way people look at you, 'another prick in a Porsche!'. On top of that the whole Porsche Owners Club thing wasn't my vibe either. Looking back the Lotus track days, and the whole Lotus vibe was much for fun, and it really was a more enjoyable car on the track too.

    I guess it's a long winded way of saying been there, done that!
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  13. #13
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    HI all. Heard back from Avus. Seems I had a couple of faults that need attention, too. I list below what they say needs to be done, as well as their quote on possible future work. Would welcome input:

    Things that need to be done per the service that they are doing:
    BANK 2 CAM SHAFT POSITION SENSOR - $484.43
    VANOS SOLENOID VALVE - $1,894 (Wow -- that is expensive!)
    PERFORMANCE PACKAGE (BMW Z8 REINFORCEMENT KIT) - $1,800
    CLUTCH - $1,469.62 - ADD $2,329 IN CONJUNCTION WITH DINAN FLYWHEEL (worth doing?)
    INSPECTION II SERVICE - $1353
    CLUTCH DELAY VALVE DELETE - NO CHARGE IN CONJUNCTION WITH CLUTCH
    ** Note: My inclination is also to do the Qaife LDS and UUC shifter -- thoughts?

    DINAN MODIFICATIONS:
    PERFORMANCE HEADERS $9919
    AIR MAS METERS $3071.50
    HIGH FLOW THROTTLE BODIES $6495
    STAGE 5 ENGINE SOFTWARE $856.50

    Optional:
    PORTING AND POLISHING OF CYLINDER HEADS - ESTIMATE $15,000

    Thanks folks for all your help and counsel!

  14. #14
    Sport Button On
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    When the cam position sensor goes bad, the computer often also throws a vanos solenoid code as well. There are threads on here describing this. The bottom line is you should replace the cam position sensor first. Then wait and see, before changing out the vanos solenoid board. If no vanos code returns (which it likely won't), no replacement of that component is required.

  15. #15
    Z8 Guru 2112's Avatar
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    I have done all those mods except the UCC shifter (Which, I want to do) and the head porting.

    You will definitely appreciate the speed in which the Revs come on with the lighter flywheel and is worth it IMHO. As far as the head porting, You will already be bumping the power approximately 15% and with the LSD and flywheel, it will feel like a whole different car. I agree with some other commenters here in that trying to wring every last drop of performance out of the car, while very cool, may not leave you with such an enjoyable street car.

    All IMHO.
    2000 Red over black
    heavily modified for performance. Although, not to the level of GM's car

  16. #16
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    You folks are terriffic. For now ... I opted for the "Performance" package (misnomer there), new clutch, with Dinan flywheel and CDV removed; UCC shifter; Qaife LDS, and also took the great advice re the relationship between the cam sensor and the vanos solenoid fault. We'll see how that pans out. Also ordered the Pilot Super Sports using Andrew's suggestions re sizes.

    On top of that, I pulled the trigger on buying the GT3 RS (3.8 Li). Will be needing to sell my '07 997 Turbo if anyone is interested.

    FInally, just wanted to say thanks to Andrew for creating this Board and to the great community that makes it so very useful.

  17. #17
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Dude!!!! THe RS too? You da' Man!!

  18. #18
    Z8Mania
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    Whooo hoooo!!!

    (what color is the turbo?)

  19. #19
    Sport Button On
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    Agreed. Need pics and details on the turbo.

  20. #20
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    Turbo is 07, 15500 miles, black on black, full leather, loaded. Immaculate condition. While it has the silly sim card slot I installed a Denison Bluetooth/iPod adapter. Only other mod is that I upgraded the software. Will post pics when I return from vacation.

  21. #21
    Z8Mania
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    Enjoy vacation. Stick shift? Im just asking. Im not in the market.

  22. #22
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    Yes. Stick.

  23. #23
    DSC Off CraZ8's Johnny Q's Avatar
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    Was your work completed at Avus? I stopped by there yesterday to talk to them about getting the Dinan flywheel along with a fresh clutch. They told me they had a couple black Z8s in there recently.
    2002 Silver/Black

  24. #24
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    It was; they did a nice job, and the car really feels much better, more nimble and healthy after this needed revamp. They were very responsive and professional throughout. Including new tires, the whole things was a $20K affair.

    And folks, the GT3RS is just insane!!!

  25. #25
    Z8Mania
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    Well done!

  26. #26
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    So you didn't do all the Dinan stuff? What dif ratio?

  27. #27
    Z8 Novice Nonplussed's Avatar
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    Didn't do the Dinan stuff; the car drives great as she was intended. Figured that for extra speed I will stick to the GT3 and instead keep the Z8 more or less as is. Diff of 3.64.

  28. #28
    I think that's a great outcome, the Z8 isn't really a power-speed car, but more of a spirited back road sportster with the right blend of power, handling and panach. The one upgrade I'd do is swaybars, the Dinan ones are all gone, so the only choice now is H&R.
    Andrew Macpherson

    Expert Z8 Inspections, with full support for both Z8 sale and purchases.

  29. #29
    Z8Mania
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    And tires.

    And exhaust

    And CDV

    And And And