Upgrading an improved instrument cluster for E30

A great way to improve your car’s interior, while retaining a stock look is to make retrofittings and OEM style upgrades. These installations are the ones your friend will never know apart from the factory look. One of these upgrades is the instrument cluster. I wanted more sporty interior look, thus I started looking for M3 style instrument cluster, which would be compatible with V8 tacho. Also wanted to upgrade both speedometer and tacho readings up to 280km/h and 8000rpm, respectively.

German company called Maustech was selling a suitable instrument cluster for V8 swaps. It is imitating the stock M3 looks with customizable options to both dials. The cluster is displaying an oil temp instead of fuel consumption. The temperature sensor is included, and can be installed into the oil sump pan. Instrument cluster was a perfect fit, no hassle whatsoever.

Maustech instrument cluster for a V8 engine with 280km/h and 8000rpm readings.
Stock E30 instrument cluster before modifications.
Instrument cluster for E30 with 280km/h speedometer, 8000rpm tacho and oil temp.

Restoring the Driver’s Seat

Ripped Driver’s seat is a typical view on E30 nowadays. Because I wanted to keep the factory look, my first task was to find some new fabric. Stock upholstery for M-technic interior is Anthrazit, code 0269. Orginal BMW number is 8106096. It is also advisable to change the pneumatic cylinders. The corresponding part numbers can be found on bmwfans.info.  Availability may vary.

A typical, worn out E30 driver’s seat.

I just happened to remember an announcement a while back, where other bimmer enthusiast mentioned he had some extra fabric for the sport seats. Luckily I still had his phone number, and gave him a call. It came out he had bought the fabric from New Zealand. Can you believe it? First you manufacture some fabrics in Europe, carry them over to opposite part of the world, and then buy them back to Europe. If communism would have won, we’d just drive along with red colored Ladas, so its better to stick with capitalism, and buy the fabrics while there is some available – nevertheless the price.

The place I ordered the upholstery was Le Mans Autofabrics. They wanted a picture from the old seats, in order to make sure they will send me the right item. Kudos for Kosta at Le Mans Autofabrics for a good service.

M-technic 2 sport seats color code is Anthrazit, code 0269. The new fabric from Le Mans Autofabrics, NZ.
A ripped seat with a sunburn.
The updated interior looks as good as new.