Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Project E36 KH2: Part I

The idea of coating the little red E36 in a Nissan shade of grey was not really thought of recently, but rather more then a year ago. Back then, knowing that to refresh a bodywork full of knicks and scratches would require a fresh coat of paint, i noted this down on a to-do list as i went along gathering bits and pieces to finish up the car. Fresh lenses, fresh side strips, a brand new bumper... etc...

Some might recall even on my trip to Japan, i bought some stickers to be planted onto the car after it got some fresh paint. Never realised i would be keeping them over a year as i got the car sorted. :P

After months of engine work, little red was ready to go back on the streets. All the while i kept pondering on what color to give the zesty 3 series. White was out not just because of the trouble keeping it mint, but i also felt it was overdone. Black was keep off my list of colors for the same upkeep issues.

Keeping it red would have been boring, even though everyone else i knew felt it should stay red. I toyed with the idea of Atlantis or Laguna Seca Blue, a little garish perhaps? Dakar yellow would have been in fine keeping with the BMW colors but i just didn't felt like driving around in a yellow car. I then decided that since i was going to do a respray, i might as well open up my options to colors outside BMW's palette. The color that stuck to the back of my mind was Lamborghini's Grigio Avalon. Seeing it on a Super-Leggera made me almost certain this was going to be my new color.

But then, fickle me. As i thumbed through the images of grey cars on google, i started to notice a cult car that i've always wanted, also a car i'll always buy when playing Gran Turismo. It was the Nissan R32 GTR, shining brightly in it's distinctive shade of Gunmetal. Further probing turned up the paint code to be KH2. I flipped through pages of magazines, image searched through dozens of sites just to save pictures of this car, in this particular shade. In the end, Godzilla won over the Bull (yet again), as i felt that yes, this is a color that just "felt" right.

With a nice mix of Japan-picked parts on the E36 (Japan-spec BBS, Japan-spec Nardi, Karo-ism carpets, Studie stickers...), choosing a JDM color made a little sense. So research done, now to save up some dough.

It was some time before the car was finally sent to a paintshop. As u can see, the amount of filler on the car just shows how many dings the body had accumulated over the years.

After many delays and enduring weeks of horrible paintshop experiences. (Details of which i'd rather not write.) The E36 was finally out but still steps away from completion. The windscreen surrounds needed replacing and i guess the paintshop 'forgot' to install my front lower lip. I also want to get a brand new set of fogs and get them tinted yellow to complete that "JDM-Euro" look.

Story to be continued in a new post :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Random Shots: Inspiration

My Inspiration? The Garage Saurus' R32.

Ever wondered what a BMW would look like painted in a Nissan color? Specifically Nissan's KH2 Gunmetal grey metallic? The full reveal soon...

Car Spotting in New Zealand: Dunedin & Queenstown

Continuing where i last left off, here are some more cars spotted whilst in Dunedin , lovely Queenstown and on the road towards Christchurch.

Here's a ratted-out S14. The jury's out on this car i'd reckon.

Lots of wagons again, this time an RS4 with a matching "RS IIII" plate. I saw quite a number of RS4s running around town.

On the topic of vanity plates, here's one quite fitting a Yaris.

Words cannot describe how beautiful the view in Queenstown is, so i'll just sneak a picture in. I am in love with this place.

Slammed pickup spotted along the weekend market. Totally rockin' it.

Another pickup but looking alot more purposeful and utilitarian. It's probably seen and continues to see lots of off-road tracks.

On the road leaving Queenstown towards Christchurch, this ol' Dodge Challenger muscled up to a fruit stall.

At a rest stop, a 205GTi was just pulling out. I've never seen one of these in the flesh before.

Not content with car spotting? Here are some birds.

A glimpse of the amazing roads we transversed across. How i wish i had my cars along for the ride. It would have been amazing. Along the way, a beautiful Jaguar E-type flew by on the opposite lane. Imagine that, lucky fella. Piloting an E-type along these roads must have been pure magic.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Random Shots: Return of the IS

Almost there...

Car Spotting in New Zealand: Dunedin

One of the places visited whilst in beautiful New Zealand was the town on Dunedin, great pizzas and wonderful weather. Managed to spot some notable autos too.

First one spotted was this lovely Karmann Ghia, sitting opposite and old bookstore where i found some old car magazines and user manuals. Interesting, but not my cuppa, so i left it in the store.

Lovely '02 on a wrong set of hubcaps if your particular about such things.

Lots of Altezza Gitas roam the streets of NZ, might be common there but very very few ever made it to our local shores.

Old school Morris pickup.

And an american mullet special, Pontiac Trans-Am Firebird. Those sharped eyed ones will remember it as basis for KITT from Knight Rider.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Random Shots: Sneak Peek

A sneak peek at what i'd consider now to be the final evolution of my E36. Slowly but surely it's coming along...

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Apologies for the lack of updates the past weeks, i was away in New Zealand for some R&R. What a beautiful and amazing place it turned out to be. Just can't get enough of looking at such beautiful surroundings and all the great food. Did some car spotting along the way too!