BF Garage: 1M & the OEM+ Philosophy

BimmerFile BMW 1M

OEM Plus. It ‘s a philosophy I ‘ve used for a number of my recent cars and the 1M is no exception. The idea is simple – add only BMW designed, engineered or inspired accessories that enhance the look and feel of the car. And while it ‘s only been two weeks and 400 miles since taking delivery the big changes have already been made.

First up was the BMW Performance Carbon Fiber spoiler. A tricky install that requires a methodical approach, the spoiler slots onto the back of the 1M perfectly completing the lines of the deck-lid. It also harkens back to the classic E28 M5 and 535is spoilers from the 80 ‘s (some of my personal favorites). But you can ‘t add one piece of CF without another.

BimmerFile BMW 1M

Next up was the carbon fiber mirror caps which are installed by simply (and gracefully) pulling off the existing ones before popping on the replacements. One of the easier maneuvers but again patience is required (as are the foam inserts that come with the CF mirrors).

Upfront I added the absolutely essential BMW Performance gloss black grille – exactly what the 1M should have had from the factory.

BimmerFile BMW 1M

The one addition I ‘ve made so far to the interior is the Alcantara typically found on the BMW Performance steering wheel. It adds a touch more of the soft stuff in a perfect place for it – somewhere you don ‘t actually touch very often. A good thing considering Alcantara is known to disintegrate rather rapidly with repeated human contact (search for 330i ZHP steering wheel warranty claims and you ‘ll see what I mean).

The results of all of this is a sportier look with more contrast (outside) that better defines the car in both style and purpose. Oh and to someone who cars about the details, it looks (and in the case of the Alcantara) feels fantastic.

BimmerFile BMW 1M

Speaking of the details, it ‘s interesting to note that all the carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) components are handmade and show exceptional craftsmanship. You ‘d expect that given the cost though.

But about performance? We ‘ll have to wait for that as both BMW and the aftermarket get better acquainted with the car. Instead next up we ‘ll talk about the rules of the break-in period and if they really matter.

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  • Chris

    Very nice Gabe !

  • 03BeastCharmer

    Did you have a local shop cover the steering wheel insert?  Surprising that you would add that since you have talked repeatedly about it coming apart on your ZHP, but it is in a low touch area so it should hold up.

    • I did it myself. It’s relatively easy if you know how to disassemble a BMW steering wheel. And yes – I only did it because it was “low-touch”.

  • Adam

    Nice Gabe!

    I gotta say BMW’s performance accessories make OEM+ an attractive option in modifying to true aftermarket stuff. All BMW performance parts come with a warrantee as well don’t they?

    Btw the cars looking great so far, I hope u enjoy it despite some of this rough Chicago pavement.

  • JonPD

    Looking good Gabe, all changes I would have have done too with the car. The aftermarket/OEM is always interesting decisions. BMW components are normally all pretty high quality but less far reaching than the aftermarket equivalents but there is a lot to be said about not messing with the warranty. Not sure how much more different BMW is to MINI but have actually had very little problems with our local BMW/MINI dealership over the years with friends that do some fairly major stuff aftermarket. 

  • Guest

    i’ve never understood carbon in non-structural areas.  carbon reinforced plastic is no lighter than regular plastic.

    • Two things. First if your adding CF to mirrors and the like you’re doing it for the look. In this case it darkens a couple accent areas of the car and gives it a slightly more aggressive look. Second, as much as a few pounds don’t really matter on a street car, the CF accessories are actually lighter than the stock components. It may surprise a few people but the much larger CF spoiler is noticeably lighter than the small stock lip spoiler. And the difference between the mirrors is even more dramatic. That said if you want to drop weight you don’t do it with these. You start by taking out the mats, rear seats and then you continue by sourcing a lighter exhaust, wheels and maybe even a CF hood and trunk lid.

  • I think you have the nicest 1M out there

    • Thanks for the kind words John. There are a ton of great ones out there so I really appreciate it.

  • Adam

    Hey Gabe I got an obscure for you, does the shift knob in your 1M illuminate like the ones in M3’s? I ask because it’s a different style to what traditionally has come in M cars.

    • Nope. It’s identical to the ZHP shift knob which doesn’t have any illumination.