View Full Version : VF Engineering supercharger kit installed - European Auto Garage - E36 M3

09-08-2009, 08:02 PM
I've had my 1995 M3 for just over two years. When purchased, performance wise, the only modification was an Active Autowerke catback exhaust.


About six months after purchase, I upgraded to a 3.5" euro MAF, newer M3 injectors flowing a bit more, a home built 3.5" air intake and cone filter, and a matching Active Autowerke tune to match these changes.


For about 6 months or so, I'd been considering forced induction. Price for performance and what I wanted out of the car played into deciding on a supercharger vs a turbo setup. Recently, a local shop was looking to do a forced induction project on an E36 M3 so I began discussions with them. The shop is European Auto Garage in Knoxville, TN http://europeanautogarage.com/ . They specialize in European marks as well as being heavily involved in working on / building /prepping road race cars. I know one of the technicians there, Mark Magnusson. He is a well certified BMW technician. I should mention, I usually do all my own work on my vehicles, and it takes a lot of trust for me to hand my car over to a shop to work on it. I typically have a hard time locating a shop that I feel will do the level of work I expect, with the level of communication I expect, at a fair price. After discussions with the service writer for the shop, Rich DeFrancisco, and with Mark, I was confident in allowing them to work on my car.

Rich and Mark were fantastic to work with. Communication was consistent, response to my inquiries were very timely, and feedback from them throughout the project was excellent. I would highly recommend this shop for any European car work.

The blower package was from VF Engineering. While the kit is a well put together setup that looks and runs great, VF's sales support (not tech support) was lackluster at best. Several broken promises on delivery times, plus one total screwup that made the blower go back and forth to Cali, lead to an almost four week delay in the shop even receiving the blower from VF. Once the shop was able to get in touch with the right people at VF, things started getting done right, but the time it took for that to happen was completely unacceptable to me as a consumer.

On to the results! I've had the car back for about two weeks now. Initial break in period was 300 miles for the blower, and it was probably a good thing as I'd gotten a new clutch during the shop time as well. I'm very happy with the power output and driving characteristics. The car pulls great, blower whine is just enough to enjoy but not be obnoxious. The power is very usable, and the car does well at putting it all to the ground and just moving out! The exhaust note above 5500 is heavenly (the shop swapped in a modified 96+ M3 midpipe during the install to help with flow). At cruise the car and its noise level are docile and doesn't attract attention.

I hope to get dyno numbers in next month or so, as I have a baseline from the previous owner of the car with only a catback on it.

This is by far the most money I've spent on modifying any car I've owned, especially in one shot, but for my total investment in the car, I could not get as well of an all around vehicle that suited me any better!


Nick M3
09-08-2009, 10:02 PM
I continue to resist getting a blower for my M3. 460 at the wheels is damned appealing.

09-21-2009, 05:19 PM
nice review, been tempted to get one of those on my wagon