Engine swaps aren’t exactly rare in the BMW community. We’ve seen plenty of I6, V8, and even V10 installs, and we know how much the purists love a Bimmer with a Chevy LS small block under the bonnet. The one featured in this video is all BMW, and it's especially neat considering the size of the mill versus the car it ended up in.
The E46 M3 isn’t a slow car by any means. It has a 3.2-litre inline-six engine – the final evolution of the S50 motor – generating 338 bhp and 269 pound-feet of torque. Back in the day, it was available with either a six-speed manual gearbox or the infamous six-speed automated manual transmission by Getrag. It's as revered now as it was coveted when new, but with so many more powerful engines floating around, why not add a few more bhp (and cylinders) for some track day fun?
That is exactly what the owner featured in this video did with his black M3. The straight-six is gone, replaced by a 5.0-litre V10 pulled from an E60 M5. As a reminder, that is BMW’s first and only production V10 to date and in this application, it delivers 500 bhp and 384 lb-ft of torque in factory form. Arguably the best part of the equation is that the unit is linked to an E92-sourced dual-clutch transmission.
A few small mods, including a new engine map, result in an output of around 520 bhp for this particular M3. After a brief introduction, the black coupe is taken for a lap around the Nurburgring. And dare we say, right from the very beginning, it’s a completely insane ride. In addition to being very fast – we can see it overtake some notable performance cars with ease – it also sounds absolutely incredible.
This isn't the first BMW V10 project we've seen. Lest we forget the row-your-own M5 estate, boasting the 10-lung engine with a manual gearbox. And in November 2022 there was a beautiful M3 (E30) with an upgraded 625-bhp version of the M5's V10.