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Rick Kukulka







Just moved to Bradenton FL in July. I have a 2013 M3 Comp with 22,000 mi. No issues. Reading about some of the potential engine issues such as bearings, idle control, oil cooling etc. Want to do some auto cross, driving schools. What would you recommend at this point to prevent future engine failure regarding some of these issues?


Hello Mr. Kukulka, first off I want to say welcome to the area, hope the move has gone smoothly. The answer to your question will require some data from the engine. Your target oil temperature should be between 220 and 250 degrees. The temperature cannot be lower than the range, if it is you will experience engine deposit issues. If it is higher you can cause damage to the engine.

The first step is to determine what your oil temperature is, you should have a gauge in the vehicle already, once we determine what the temperature is we can make an informed decision as to how to solve any potential issues. There are 2 main ways we can get the oil temperature to the correct range. The first is by changing the oil viscosity, a thicker viscosity will bring temperatures down, however, due to the fact that this is a vehicle that is used mostly for street driving I would not recommend changing the viscosity. Changing it would also void any warranty.

The other way is by adding and/or replacing the oil cooler(s). Your vehicle should be equipped with very good oil cooling from the factory as it is a M vehicle, therefore you may not have to change anything at all. In conclusion, the first order of business is to find the actual oil temperature while on track. I would recommend attending an autocross event first as they are far less taxing on the engine. Log the engine oil temperature at the beginning and the end of each run. If you find them to be in the low end of the range I would then attend a track day and log the engine oil temperature then. Keep in mind that if they are 260 tr higher I would stop running the vehicle.

There is a third option and it is far easier. I would try to get in touch with other members/track day drivers with the same or similar vehicle and ask them what their oil temperatures are and which, if any, modifications to the oil system they have done. I attend some track days and always talk to people been if I’m not actually driving, you will find that most drivers are very nice and willing to share information.

On another note, you will also want to have a brake flush done, preferably with high-temperature brake fluid such as Motul RBF600. From my experience, you may find an issue with brake temperature as well. Of course, this will depend a lot upon how you use the brakes on track, I tend to be hard on brakes. Pay attention to both pad and fluid temperatures. Tire pressures and the pressure versus temperature relationship will also be important. I hope I was able to help. Please let me know if you have any further questions. Thank you.

Gil Neves


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