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Thread: final drive / diff cooling

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2004

    Default final drive / diff cooling

    Was just reading in a German language Alpina brochure for E36 parts that they have/had a special version diff cover for better cooling, translated: Alpina final drive cover

    To keep the oil temperature in the final drive of the BMW Alpina B8 4.6 in the acceptable area, a special diff cover was designed, which offers a larger surface with 19 cooling ribs. The oil volume was increased to 3.1 liters with this design.
    A oil temperature reduction of up to 30 degree Celsius can be achieved.
    This modification is especially recommended for your BMW when you drive often higher speeds on the Autobahn over long distances, and also for cars which are used for pulling trailers. For BMW 323i - 328i, M3 up to 9/95; Touring, Cabrio,
    order/part no. 33 10 131, brochure print date September 2003, pic on page 5 of the catalog

    Unfortunately it does not fit my 1998 M3.
    Are there any other companies which offer such diff cooling mods for the E36?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004


    found something, nice, looks like the Alpina one $649 ,excerpt from description: The benefit of this expanded capacity cover is to extend the life of the LSD clutch packs. These clutch packs will overheat when driven at the limit. Our cover helps reduce the temperature in a number of ways:
    1.Increase fluid capacity from 1.5 quarts to 3 quarts.
    2.Extended "fins" catch airflow to cool the cover itself, as it heats up from the increase in fluid temperature.
    What happens when you use a stock differential at the track, even at a simple driver school? With a single 30 minute track session, a driver with average ability can increase the temperatures in a stock differential, causing the fluid to start seeping out of the vent hole. By doubling the capacity of the amount of differential fluid, as well as adding much needed cooling fins, the differential is allowed to function properly, within the factory specified temperature parameters. The cooling fins stick below the actual differential, allowing for additional cooling. For increased cooling surface area, the fins are connected at the bottom, similar to the factory E39 M5 and E46 M3 differential covers. The extended area of the differential cover extends 2.25" lower the stock cover.
    How Effective Is the Cover? In a recent AER race, a team running an E36 logged data on their E36 during the 9 hour event. They reported back to us they found a 35 degree F drop in differential fluid temperatures. By reducing these temperatures, they are able to prevent their differential from a necessary rebuild from overheating.

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