When Dan Dobson purchased his dream M automobile, he thought it’d be sufficient for him in factory-standard type. However then a tuned BMW M4 confirmed him a clear pair of heels on the road, and the crimson mist descended…
Function from Efficiency BMW. Phrases: Dan Bevis. Pictures: Jason Dodd.
If we had a quid for each characteristic automobile proprietor who advised us that they by no means meant to switch their automobile, we’d be rolling a mightily spectacular fleet of M automobiles. More often than not, it’s little greater than a fusion of historic precedent and FOMO that leads individuals to mod their motors; they could suppose it’s excellent as it’s after they first purchase the automobile in query, however it solely takes a go to to a present or a scroll by means of Instagram to remind them of how a lot enjoyable that they had with their earlier initiatives, and/or how cool different individuals on the scene are making comparable automobiles. Nonetheless, within the case of Dan Dobson (@dan.dobson), the impetus was somewhat extra visceral: “After I purchased my M4, my instant thought was ‘I adore it, I’ll by no means change it’,” he laughs. “However at some point, after I was out driving a few week later, I challenged one other M4 and he completely smoked me! At that time, issues modified.”
He’s not kidding. What we’re seeing earlier than us as we speak is a way faraway from a factory-stock M4. It’s been a very long time coming for Dan too as a result of whereas he’s at all times hankered after a full-fat M automobile, it’s solely lately that he’s reached the life stage whereby he’s been capable of afford one. However earlier than this, he’d put in robust groundwork modding his different automobiles; his first, a more-door Focus 1.6, obtained a Powerflow exhaust; this was adopted by a Kind R Honda with a customized map (and any Honda proprietor will grimly let you know what a ache within the bottom that’s to attain), a mapped Mercedes A-Class, and a mapped Audi TT quattro. Evidently, he properly is aware of the advantages of cracking open a automobile’s mind and rearranging the furnishings.
These sorts of shenanigans have been a lifelong enthusiasm too: “Proper again so far as I can bear in mind, I used to attend automobile reveals with my dad,” he remembers. “I at all times thought the BMWs have been particular, as they’ll rival even one of the best supercars with the precise setup – then on the press of a button, be sociable and quiet.” And when the time lastly got here to grasp these lifelong desires, there was just one mannequin that may match the invoice: “The M4, I knew that was the one for me,” Dan beams. “One of the best-looking automobile with one of the best efficiency. Plus I knew I may tune it.” Aha, it’s all popping out now, isn’t it? There he’s saying ‘I adore it, I’ll by no means change it’, however that probability encounter with a faster M4 didn’t precisely have a bunch of heavy lifting to do when it got here to convincing Dan to open Pandora’s field.
“I discovered the automobile on Auto Dealer, at a non-public appointment-only storage that specialised in efficiency automobiles,” he continues. “It had completed 56k miles and seemed in excellent situation. And sure, inside every week of that pasting by the opposite M4, I had mine as much as Stage 1! Southern Coding put in the bootmod3 and gearbox software program with upgraded air consumption. Two weeks after that, I used to be stepping as much as Stage 2…”
If he’s making all of it sound too simple, let’s not overlook that automobiles are naturally capricious issues that prefer to struggle again a bit, and taking the M4 into Hack Engineering for the makeover revealed that the inventory turbos have been leaking somewhat oil – a fairly frequent subject with the S55 engine. Dan was requested whether or not he would like to interchange them with inventory gadgets or upgraded hybrid turbos, and you may most likely guess what his reply was. “From that time, issues escalated,” he laughs. “I wanted the brakes upgrading because the inventory setup was failing badly and have become harmful with the additional energy. Then the crank hub wanted altering, and we wanted meth to maintain temps down. The checklist is countless!”
Yep, all a part of the enjoyable isn’t it? Mods observe mods observe mods, it’s an exponential course of. Hack Engineering fitted the Littco L640 hybrid turbos, which boast greater generators, bigger compressor wheels and stronger bearings for final spooling prowess, and these have been joined by freer-flowing cats and the eminently smart crank hub seize plate. Earlier than lengthy, marque specialists Litchfield carried out the complete crank hub repair, which includes changing the entire meeting with an uprated merchandise with oil pump drive pulley and cam drive pulley already put in.
The brake improve consisted of a raiding of EBC Brakes’ newest wares for the M4 platform, with floating entrance discs and fast-road pads joined by Hel braided strains; as quickly as EBC launch appropriate discs for the rear, they’ll be occurring too. And the water/meth injection? That’s a intelligent system that reduces inlet temperatures by as much as 100°C, markedly growing effectivity, eliminating detonation, and growing peak energy. Dan labored with Cooling Mist to optimise the setup for his automobile, beginning out with a twin FTP charge-pipe association, then upgrading to a three-way structure with an additional nozzle within the J-pipe.
“After the meth, a customized tune was carried out by Cary Jordan of JordanTuned, who’s primarily based within the USA and top-of-the-line tuners on this planet,” he says. “The oil cooler was modified round this time because the inventory part failed, and Hex Code Tuning has additionally carried out a great deal of work for me, sorting the suspension and ensuring the meth runs easily.”
With all of this deal with efficiency, although, Dan hasn’t ignored the aesthetics: “I began with the carbon fibre fairly early on,” he explains. “I used to be looking by means of footage of some monitor BMWs for brand new splitter and diffuser concepts, and after I got here throughout the DTM M automobile I simply thought it seemed excellent and I needed to have it! This automobile is ready up for monitor use but additionally occasional automobile meets, so I needed it to look the half and again itself up with the pace and efficiency. The design itself has truly come from three completely different M automobiles – the bonnet from one, the roof from one other and again of the automobile from an M2. The decals and sponsors you see dotted about, resembling EBC and Littco, are the precise modifications on the automobile, in order that’s a private contact. The wrap was carried out by Monster Wraps, they did a fantastic job.”
It definitely appears to be like the half, and Dan was eager that this exterior consideration to element was carried by means of to the cabin as properly; feeling that it was well-appointed however somewhat sombre for his tastes, he’s spruced it up by the addition of tons extra carbon fibre trim together with some tasteful Alcantara – most notably the steering wheel. The inside’s an space that’s nonetheless ongoing, in reality, as since our shoot he’s fitted a pair of light-weight bucket seats and six-point harnesses. Critical stuff, which has additional impressed him to maintain honing and refining the chassis. “At current, the one suspension mod is the Eibach springs,” Dan clarifies, “together with a correct highway/monitor geometry setup. However I’m debating coilovers, and a few Millway Motorsport adjustable prime mounts will certainly be discovering their means in.”
Wheels are additionally on the to-do checklist, as is so usually the case with ongoing initiatives. “I began out with the inventory 437M alloys,” he says. “I did like them as you can see my brake improve properly – I’m a fan of seeing the discs and calipers! Nonetheless, I quickly modified to the 666M-style alloys you see right here, as I simply thought the design was gorgeous.” For the reason that shoot, these have been swapped once more for CS-style wheels, that are lighter and provides a fair higher viewing window for the brakes. And who is aware of what he’ll be swapping on subsequent? One thing to get bystanders gawping at his stoppers, that’s for positive. “The EBC brakes are my favorite improve on the entire automobile,” Dan enthuses. “They give the impression of being gorgeous, and the efficiency is incredible. The inventory setup simply didn’t deal with the facility – that’s not right down to BMW failing, merely that the additional energy demanded a greater answer.”
The way in which Dan talks concerning the tuned BMW M4 as we speak, it’s all a really good distance faraway from that preliminary evaluation that ‘I’ll by no means change it’. He’s a person transformed; certainly, a person possessed. Presumably he didn’t see issues going this far, however there’s no level placing your palms as much as attempt to cease an avalanche. “I by no means anticipated it to be this tuned,” he says. “It was primarily right down to these leaking turbos – after that time, we needed to improve the entire automobile because of the energy improve, and it snowballed. And actually, I can’t take care of different M automobiles beating me – it’s the competitiveness in me.” And there you could have it. Very similar to the M division itself, Dan simply can’t assist pushing for perfection. This undoubtedly isn’t the final we’ll be seeing of this ever-evolving M4.
Tech Spec: Tuned BMW M4
Engine & Transmission:
3.0-litre twin-turbo straight-six S55B30, Littco L640 hybrid turbos, Modstock single mid-pipe exhaust system, Injen induction equipment, Mishimoto oil cooler, Litchfield crank hub repair, FTP cost pipes, Cooling Mist triple-nozzle Stage 2 meth equipment with stealth tank, Burger Motorsports oil catch can with billet cap and filter, customized tune by Cary Jordan (JordanTuned). Seven-speed M DCT gearbox
19” 666M-style wheels with 255/35 (entrance) and 275/35 (rear) tyres, Eibach springs, EBC floating entrance discs, EBC pads, Hel braided strains
OEM Mineral white paint, customized wrap, carbon fibre entrance splitter, grilles, canards, mirrors, facet blades, rear diffuser and wing
Alcantara steering wheel with crimson stripe and crimson M buttons, carbon fibre shift paddles, carbon inside trim, stealth meth tank in boot