Specialty Experience – 2021+ BMW G8X M3/M4 Oil Cooler R&D, Part 2 – Prototyping

No perfect performance happens on a whim. Well, maybe sometimes dumb luck takes the reigns, but typically the years of honing your skills and abilities guide you through. The same could be said about BMW and its performance division. These Bavarians are not known for “wingin’ it” and for the last 35 years and counting, they’ve been tirelessly perfecting every M3 and M4 that rolls off the assembly line. Every component is meticulously engineered to continuously raise the bar for the sports sedan segment. That said, nobody’s perfect, and there are still some aspects of the G8X platform that could use further refinement.

They say that practice makes perfect, which is how we feel about our new oil cooler design for the G8X platform. One of the main factors contributing to the performance of this new oil cooler is the proper fitment for two reasons. For starters, no one wants to struggle with an ill-fitting part, especially on the likes of an M3. Also, since this oil cooler relies on the vehicle’s aerodynamics for proper airflow, the core needs to seal against the undertray perfectly; otherwise, the cooling properties could diminish. 

While our modeling software provides our engineers with a precise digital workspace to create their new designs, nothing quite compares to installing the physical design on the vehicle. So, to double-check the fitment of our new design, we created a prototype. 

Prototyping is an essential step in our process since it confirms the fitment of our new design and aids in streamlining the R&D process. In addition, since we’re test-fitting the design before starting production, we can easily make updates to the size and shape without slowing down or restarting the production process. This way, we only need one final set of production samples instead of twiddling our thumbs while we wait for updated units. 

With our prototype installed, and our engineer, Dave, satisfied with the fitment, our practice session is over. Finally, we’re ready for the full performance of our full production units. Stay tuned for the first look at our final oil cooler design coming soon! 

Thanks for Reading!

-Nick

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