Perfectly Imperfect: Rocky’s 1992 Mercedes-Benz W124 300d

Perfect cars come in all shapes, sizes, and prices. In the case of Rocky’s 1992 300d Mercedes-Benz, it is perfect because it fills a need by being imperfect. You may have caught on that broken old cars are thematic to our blog lately, and you would be correct. We love old cars because they have stories to share and provide endless entertainment thanks to their quirks. Rocky, like the rest of us enthusiasts, is absolutely giddy about his atrocious Merc. This car is gloriously tailored to the purpose for which it was purchased, as I found out after spending some time behind the wheel.

Having an old car is something of a love-hate relationship. While it may not start right up on the first few clicks of the starter, you know that just a little bit of love can go a long way towards keeping it running. This car, purchased as a winter beater, set Rocky back less than a few week’s worths of bar tabs. Naturally, it has some issues. Those issues are the reasons why it is such a lovable little tank. The imperfections that attributed to its low cost make it the right choice for Rocky to obliterate this winter with whatever northern Ohio can throw its way.

This 300d is an example of Mercedes’ W124 chassis which spanned over a decade and received a number of engines including the awesome AMG V8. Since this one is Diesel and carries the weight of hundreds of thousands of miles upon its shoulders, Rocky’s 300d is possibly the slowest one to ever exist. Which says something, considering the acceleration from the W124 in its most powerful trim could still be described as glacial. Jokes aside, the cushy W124 platform featured several innovations in their suspension and interior functions that became industry benchmarks thanks to their superb performance. The W124 also benefitted from the lowest coefficient of drag at the time of its release. This was likely Mercedes trying to squeeze everything they could from the monumentally slow car in order to help it keep up with its Audi and BMW rivals. Which it did not.

Despite all that, this car is still lovable. It is interesting with its suspension seats and massive steering wheel, which give the driver the impression of wheeling around in a school bus. The rumbling Diesel and faint turbo whistle complete the thought that maybe you are driving a Bluebird school bus, except this might be slower. The funky characteristics continue with the rest of the woodgrain-splattered interior, which resembles the inside of a house from a Wes Anderson film. It might be a requirement that Rocky invest in some tweed jackets.

The interior truly does provide the most enjoyment from the car. The A/C works, front windows still have some life in them, and one speaker intermittently makes noises, so it might as well be mint. It is definitely good enough to transport Rocky in style, albeit, excruciatingly slowly. Since the interior is ‘well loved’, it should be no pain to drive through the winter with snowy and muddy boots trampling in and out of the coffee-colored carpet, which is exactly perfect. Once again, a winter sled cannot be something so nice that you consider not driving it, but it can’t be destroyed to a point that you won’t enjoy it. This 300d provides an excellent balance of comfort and brokenness that sits in the Goldilocks zone as a classy beater.

Beaters like Rocky’s 300d and Zach’s E32 are essential to the car enthusiast as they give us a ‘redundancy’ as one of our engineers like to call it. The more layers of redundancy you have, the easier life is when we constantly take apart our cars. In the cases of many of us, we prefer three or four beat up old classics over a single new car. At the end of the day, we always have something to drive and never worry too much about what other people may do to the car while we are out and about. Door dings? Who cares!

This 300d is an excellent winter beater and a daily driver, but is it the perfect choice? Rocky seems to believe it is, and after driving both it and the E32, I have to say I myself am undecided. There are positives in the corner of the W124 thanks to its plush seats and soft ride, but it is so unbelievably slow it almost seems like it can’t keep up with the rotation of the Earth. This car, the E32, and others as yet unannounced will be the main focus throughout the winter as we find out which beater is the one to have. If you think you have the perfect winter beater, leave a comment or send us a message so we can find out for ourselves whether you are onto something!

5 Ways to Make Your Next DIY More Fun on Your Audi, BMW, MINI, or Volkswagen

When you own a vintage or performance car, the goal is to have more fun times driving it than you have moments that make you frown. As with any hobby, however, there are those times that something goes wrong or its just time to take care of that nagging maintenance. Whether you are driving something old or something new, it is always critical that you take care of those concerns before they turn into something much worse. Even though its just basic maintenance, it is still part of the fun in owning something special like a classic or performance vehicle. Here is how you can be sure to have a fun time even doing something that many would consider tedious.

First and foremost, working on cars is always best enjoyed with a good friend or group of friends. Owning these cars makes us part of an exclusive club where we are sure to form tons of lasting relationships based around our common interest. These maintenance jobs are the perfect opportunity to strengthen those bonds as well as make basic grunt work on your car fun. So grab your friends, a few frosty beverages, and come up with a game plan.

Next, you need to be serious about ensuring the work is done properly and with the right parts, but don’t get so engrossed that you take the job too seriously. Remember, as long as you are careful and meticulous, you have nothing to worry about in your DIY job. Be relaxed and enjoy the time you spend wrenching on your car with the end-goal always in mind that it will get you back on the road with a smile on your face and the satisfaction that you did the job yourself. One easy thing to do is set out a piece of cardboard and place all your hardware in order into the cardboard. It makes putting things back together incredibly simple and stress-free.

Make sure you have the right parts and tools for the job. Often, one of the things I enjoy most about DIY’ing is how much my tool collection grows. If I don’t have something I need to work on the parts I am attempting to replace, then I get to use that as an excuse to justify the purchase. Schwaben has pretty much everything from your most universal to incredibly specific tools to help you get the job done right, while our Assembled By ECS kits come with all the right parts hand-picked by our team to ensure you have the best replacements all in one box to go start to finish on your DIY the right way. With all the components for your job start to finish included in one box, you won’t have to make back and forth trips to the closest parts store and pay a premium: if they have it.

Take your time: sometimes, especially with northern cars, you have to fight your way through uninstalling the faulty or worn parts. This can easily frustrate even the most patient at-home mechanic, so keep a cool head on your shoulders and a cold drink on hand while you focus on one piece at a time. Know the job will be finished and you will not become discouraged. Keep chugging away at it and don’t put too much stress on completing the job right then and there. It may be a little more inconvenient to place a restriction on yourself and know you aren’t going to be finished in one sitting, but it is better to take your time and spend a few days on a job than to rush and mess something up or become aggravated. Remember, we want to have as much fun as possible so maintaining our cars is still a hobby and not a chore.

Lastly, consider filming the whole process. You can easily set up your phone to record and show places as you encounter them that give you trouble. Look at it as a chance to help someone out in the future and maybe make a video that gets a ton of views. This can make the process more enjoyable as you will have something to make you slow down and step back on occasion rather than rushing through the job. It also allows you to go back and reference your pictures or video should you forget how something goes back together or where you put something like that pesky 10mm socket.

With a successful DIY complete, you always feel a sense of accomplishment and pride in knowing you are capable of taking care of your car. With the Assembled By ECS kits, which are kits we assembled based on our own need for a start-to-finish project all in one box, you can be confident everything you need will be there for you so you don’t have to keep going back and placing orders for that one thing you forgot. Take the guesswork out, lower your stress, slow down, have a drink, and enjoy your next DIY with Schwaben Tools and Assembled By ECS complete service kits.




Vendor Spotlight: 60 Years of Sonax

What sets apart a car enthusiast from the rest of the inhabitants in his neighborhood? Do we look at the countless nights spent tinkering in the garage, or the constant arrivals of parts to their front door? While it may be a combination of several intricacies of an enthusiast’s life, one unifying activity found amongst all enthusiasts is the hand washing of one’s car. That is definitely something the fellows at Sonax take seriously, as they provide some of the most well-known car care products to enthusiasts all over the world who enjoy the cathartic release of cleaning their vehicle with the best stuff around.

What began 60 years ago as a silver polish has blossomed into one of the go-to names in automotive polish and cleaning products. Almost assuredly any car show or get together you may attend features shiny show cars using their products to achieve the highest level of attractiveness.

If you are preparing for your next show, don’t leave out Sonax car care products during your detailing work. Their engine cleaner is perfect for tackling the nasty grime and grease that builds up and makes you embarrassed to show off your car’s power plant. Be confident and take pride in what’s under the hood this time with the Sonax engine cleaner.

If your wheels are looking a little darker than they should and a normal wash just won’t cut it, Sonax wheel cleaner PLUS wheel cleaner is just what you need to bring the shine back. This cleaner is safe for all wheel types and works stronger and faster than other cleaners to ensure a pristine like-new finish without spending back-breaking hours polishing those lips by hand. This wheel cleaner is ideal if you have neglected wheels you are trying to restore or need a super quick detail after driving to a show, just make sure you have some water handy!

Sonax also offers interior cleaner, bug remover, and other sanitation products to cover every base in taking care of your car’s appearance and smell. Of course, you do need a way to dry everything off. Once you have finished washing your vehicle and are ready to prevent any water spots, the Sonax microfiber drying cloth is the perfect finishing touch.

Save time with your next detail and see the best results with the 60 years of excellent experience behind Sonax and their car care products. Take care of your favorite cars the right way and keep them as clean as the day you brought them home without jumping through hoops of trying to figure out the best products to use. Sonax is the name we all trust thanks to their extensive experience in polishes and cleaning products for a good reason. Check out their full inventory of accessories here at ECS Tuning.

Prep Your Show Car with Honest Wash

With warm weather finally upon us, our cars that have been in hibernation or under the knife all winter are ready to stretch their legs and take advantage of sunny afternoons. For many of us, our cars are being prepped for season opener shows across the country. After sitting for a winter, there are a few things that will need to be addressed before our cars are ready to break necks on the showgrounds. Let’s take a look at some of the ways you can make show prep a breeze and have your pride and joy looking polished and perfect (to you, anyway) for the big shows.

Once your car has been revived you can go about detailing and prepping the car for your upcoming show. Detailing and washing cars is a cathartic experience for most car enthusiasts and everyone has their own method. How you detail your car is up to you, but for the best clean finish, the products you choose will make a huge difference.

Honest Wash has everything you need for the exterior of your car to be show-ready. Foam sprayers are an absolute breeze for a full wash, and their teddy bear microfiber towel sets are just what you need to get everything clean without any swirls or scratches. Their Deluxe Foam Sprayer Kit is an all-in-one package that is designed to increase your speed and efficiency in cleaning the outside of your car so you can spend more time focusing on the little details that are left out if you become impatient or run out of time.

For the rest of your exterior, Honest Wash has a Professional Wheel Cleaner kit and an Engine Bay Cleaning kit that will help you tackle brake dust and grime to get that show car shine on every corner of your car.

Finally, their Car Show Prep Quick Detail Spray will make sure no blemishes, fingerprints, or bird $%&@ that marred your car’s beauty on the way to the show will be seen. Make sure your car is perfect and ready to go with the detail spray and wheel & tire shine kits for a squeaky clean look.

Honest Wash has tons of products designed to give your car the best total detail possible. You can trust them, Honest is in the name!

ECS Tuning Spin-To-Win Grand Prize Winner

This winter we hosted our recurring Spin-To-Win sweepstakes which offered a $15,000.00 grand prize in ECS credit towards anything on our website. The amazing prize allows the winner to achieve their tuning dreams all in one go. In the case of our winner, this credit gives them the chance to complete a functional restoration of a unique and cherished time-capsule from the European motoring heyday. Tryon, the grand prize winner, is an ambassador of BMW heritage who has already begun to put his new winnings to excellent use.

We had the pleasure of speaking at length with Tryon shortly after he was notified that he was the recipient of the winnings. A BMW and MINI enthusiast from Florida, Tryon is no stranger to large-scale projects. His purchase of lowering springs and brake pads were the lucky orders picked to grant him the coveted grand prize, and opened the door to much grander aspirations for the Touring.

Tryon purchased his Touring from an importer, who had brought it across the Atlantic from its original owner. The interior and exterior show what a meticulous caretaker the car’s previous driver was, as it was in fantastic condition apart from some age related wear and tear. If you want to read more about what to look for when purchasing an E30 of your own, you can find information in our E30 Buyer’s Guide article.

The MINI is a 07 Cooper S that has been modified for track and competitive use, but will most likely be sold for build money to work on the E30 Touring, which has already received an extensive list of restorative parts in an effort to bring the car back to its former glory.

When asked about his build plans with the winnings, Tryon could not have made us happier:

“I’m not really a showy guy, so I don’t plan on turning the Touring into anything showy. But I do like to show up to meets and shows, and would like to have the Touring there looking good.”

“I love talking about my cars. I love being stopped when I drive the Touring, especially by the younger generation. I feel like it’s my chance to get the next generation into E30s. Since it is right-hand drive, a lot of times I have people just coming up because it’s something unique.”

We asked him what he had already done to the Touring:

“It has a Mtech Rear Spoiler, a new hatch, the lowering springs I purchased that won the sweepstakes, a new headliner, and completely refreshed suspension right now.”

So what is next for his build?

“I’m definitely building this car for me. I want it to be a clean example of the car in nearly original form, but be like a new car to drive. So I already purchased a nearly brand new M20B25 drivetrain that I will swap out for the 4 cylinder. I also will be using the winnings to purchase a new clutch, flywheel, Z3 short shift kit, ZHP knob, a roof rack, and Ansa muffler and mid pipe. To be honest, I pretty much already have the money spent. The rest will go to the odds and ends I need to complete the engine swap.

With all those plans already in motion, this imported Touring, of which he is the second owner, Tryon is well on his way to driving a one of a kind example of quite possibly one of the most sought-after non-M E30 currently. What truly impressed us was his humility and excitement in creating a fun to drive, nearly unmolested, vintage BMW. The purist nature in trying to restore something tastefully is something of a rarity in younger tuners, and too many E30s (some of ours included) have been excessively modified, 24v or V8 swapped, stanced, and otherwise extremely molested. With a B25 swap being the only real modification, this Touring will retain its brilliant design and be enjoyed by a caretaker with all the right characteristics of a true enthusiast.

Congratulations, Tryon, we can’t wait to see what you come up with! Stay tuned for his build over time on the ECS Facebook and Instagram accounts, as well as right here on the ECS Blog! Look out for future sweepstakes and your chance to win one-of-a-kind prizes from your source in European tuning.

Get started on your own build plans with ECS!

Your source for European Performance Tuning


Best Fun Modifications for the VW MK6 GTI – The ECS Tuning Guide

To maintain the theme of modifying a second-hand MK6 GTI, we are outlining some fun modifications to improve your overall enjoyment while driving the car. Though they may not add performance benefits or significant changes to the aesthetics of your MK6 GTI, simple ‘livability’ modifications are what personalizing and customizing a car is really about. Tailoring a car to your specific interests and adding conveniences for yourself are the bread and butter of car modification. We have compiled a list of some great places to start that will complete the previous two lists and give you a well-rounded, enjoyable, personalized VW MK6 GTI!

Sequential LED Mirrors

If you have read our previous posts regarding the MK6 GTI, then you are familiar with our suggestions regarding interior lighting. You can find that post, and information on Ziza Lighting, right here. Interior lighting is definitely an important modification for general enjoyment but does not add much in the way of a ‘personal’ look to your car. For the exterior, we absolutely love the Sequential LED Mirror Housing mod brought to us by HELIX.

The sequential indicator with a smoked housing provides an aesthetic change to the mirror housing itself and gives your blinker a more pronounced and updated sweeping light rather than that boring old blinking bulb. Newer vehicles have made the sequential LED look popular, and this simple addition to your MK6 GTI definitely gives it a similar feel without being too flashy.

Rear Lip Spoiler Extension

We know what you’re already thinking: “front wheel drive doesn’t need a spoiler!” Well, people don’t NEED tattoos. But they look great (generally), provide a touch of visible personality, and are just plain fun. The lip spoiler extension adds some carbon fiber to your hatch and makes the profile of your MK6 GTI more aggressive. This type of modification by itself might look silly, but when paired with some of the tasteful products in these posts, your MK6 GTI for power the look comes together quite cohesively.

Hatch Pop Kit

Since we are talking about the rear of your MK6 GTI, we have a kit that adds convenience and an updated feature found in many newer vehicles with rear hatches. Our very own Hatch Pop Kit for the MK6 GTI raises the hatch with the touch of a button and allows you to more easily access the cargo area.

If your hands are full, you don’t want to spend any more time in the rain than absolutely necessary, or if you just want to pretend to be a Jedi, the Hatch Pop Kit provides the ability to easily raise the hatch from your key fob. Although this may not be something people would scream excitedly over at a car show,  this kind of convenience adds appreciation and enjoyment to owning the vehicle. Our hatch pop kit is easily installed without making extensive modifications or spending excessive amounts of time installing the parts.

Flush Kits

If your MK6 GTI is still on factory wheels, lowering the vehicle as we suggested in a previous post will give the car a very sunken stance most would agree is worse than if it was sitting at stock ride height. While purchasing wheels with correct offset and fitment is an eventual goal for most enthusiasts, finances often say otherwise. An easy and inexpensive way to achieve a wider track and ‘flush’ look to your car is with our properly measured Wheel Flush Kits for your MK6 GTI.

These kits are precisely designed for exact fitment on your MK6 GTI for a meaner stance on the stock wheels. This kit brings the offset out farther and mates the outer face of the wheels with the contour of the fender arches. While you may need some fender rolling for an extremely lowered vehicle with aggressive spacers installed, these flush kits are designed to bolt right up and give your wheels that perfect fitment.

Short Shift Kits/Shift Knobs

Finally, we highly suggest one of our adjustable Short Shift Kits and a unique shift knob from one of our reputable vendors. You engage the shifter more often than almost anything in your car, and much of the driving feel is derived from the characteristics of the shift throw. Most shift throws from the factory are long and ambiguous with a sloppy or soft feel in the bushings. With our kit, you add an engaging and tactile feel to improve your driving experience.

The shorter, stiffer, more precise throws are more satisfying and give you a sporty feel in the cockpit. A weighted shift knob further adds to that experience and provides a tangible difference in feel since your interface with the car is directly influenced. Something with a pleasing grip, hefty weight, and interesting style always improves the way you fell shifting through the gears.


With the short list above, our previous power modification post, and our post detailing the first service maintenance for your second-hand MK6 GTI, we feel confident you can make a great purchase decision. These recommendations will allow you to take full advantage of the driving pleasure these hot hatchbacks can provide with some simple improvements and modifications. Hopefully, along the way, you will discover your own ‘perfect’ list of changes to build your favorite MK6 GTI. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, we would love to hear them! Let us know how you built your GTI or how many of our suggestions were right for your car!

Interested in purchasing?

Our full catalog of parts for the MK6 GTI is just a click away!


Best 5 Maintenance Needs for your Second Hand MK6 GTI

If you are in the market for a used hot hatchback, then you have undoubtedly put the MK6 GTI on your list to consider. Right now, the MK6 has entered that sweet-spot of being both affordable and available in excellent condition being that its oldest model year is within ten years old. As we explained in a previous post, the MK6 GTI has a great potential for making quick and easy power with a few bolt-on modifications and is a competitive little scamp with some basic suspension upgrades. Before you jump all over the fun modifications and improvements we mentioned in that post, however, we have compiled a list of simple do-it-yourself maintenance needs that your second-hand MK6 GTI will surely benefit from having serviced.

While we will not go in-depth into specifically how to replace each component in this post, check out our links to the parts and DIY articles we will include so you can be sure to make a confident purchase decision and know we are right here to help you make the MK6 GTI of your dreams become a reality!


Oil Service

As with any new-to-you vehicle, ECS Tuning’s VW gurus recommend an immediate oil change. Our Assembled By ECS Oil Service Kit is one of many which includes a new oil filter, gasket, Genuine Synthetic Factory Recommended Oil, and an ECS Magnetic Drain Plug to replace your existing plug. Replacing your oil ensures you are able to maintain the proper service intervals and can tell you a lot about the condition of your engine’s internal components. Check for excessive metal flakes in the oil as well as coolant or frothiness. These are signs of advanced wear and failing accessories or gaskets that we would recommend seeing a professional for diagnostics. However, nearly all MK6 GTIs will be in great shape, and looking for a stock example can help increase your chances of finding one that has not spent time banging off its rev-limiter.

Cabin Air Filter

Another simple replacement you can complete in minutes with minimal tools is to replace the Cabin Air Filter in your MK6 GTI. While fairly self-explanatory, the cabin air filter provides a critical service: this filters the air in the vehicle as it is introduced from the outside and prevents allergens, particulate matter, and even odors from permeating the air in your car. We use MANN Filters, who produce some of the most widely used and highest quality filters available and it is what we recommend using. They filter odors like nitrogen and sulfur, prevent conditions favorable to bacteria buildup, and trap allergens while keeping your interior fresh and clean to breathe.

Fuel Filter

Maintaining the filter motif, replacing your Fuel Filter is also a must. Over time, contaminants in the fuel system are trapped here. Think of how your body traps bacteria in lymph nodes: the fuel filter keeps particles and contaminants from clogging up your fuel delivery and robbing your car of performance. Since it can’t clear itself, replacing this filter as the car’s mileage increases is a seriously critical service. Once again, we choose a new fuel filter from MANN Filter to take care of our needs.

Spark Plugs

Moving back to the engine, Spark Plugs are always a recommended initial service on your previously enjoyed car. While these may seem fairly obvious, often we can make excuses for ourselves that everything is working fine right now, so there is no need to make any changes. Spark Plug replacements will guarantee proper engine performance and will allow you to make the most out of your 2.0T by assuring that all your original horsepowers are present and accounted for under the hood. We use NGK Iridium Spark Plugs to make sure that a powerful enough spark and correct gap for the electricity to arc across are within the factory expectations. Replacing your plugs regains lost power, fuel efficiency, and smoothes rough idles as a result of carbon buildup.

 Suspension Refresh

Finally, we encourage all new MK6 GTI owners to perform a suspension service. Our varying stages of suspension refresh kits account for the basic needs, or performance upgrades, available to interchange when performing this service. The Assembled By ECS Suspension Refresh Kits contain essential front and rear suspension components that will have undeniably aged and softened over the lifespan of your MK6 GTI. Important components like shock tower mounts, end links, and bushings are highly recommended. This is also a fantastic opportunity to achieve multiple goals at once by upgrading your suspension with some of our recommended cup kits or Coilover sets as we discussed in a previous post this week.


Drive and Enjoy!

With these services completed, your basic maintenance needs for a second hand purchased MK6 GTI will be addressed and you can enjoy your car the way its original owner did driving it from the Volkswagen dealership! Of course, no two used cars are alike, so we do suggest making observations to other functions of the car and perform suggested maintenance at appropriate intervals. More involved jobs, like servicing the timing chain and guides, are a stretch to tackle at home unless you are a seriously competent mechanic. We do, however, provide any of the maintenance needs, or performance upgrades you may want, right here at ECS Tuning. Let us know in the comments if you have any suggestions, questions, or comments.

Check out some more shots from our friend Ryan @ryan_vw_mk6 and his GTI on Instagram and the photographer @officiallogandonald for some great VW content.


DIY: ECS Performance Lightweight Power Steering Pulley

Installing an ECS Tuning Performance Power Steering Pulley is an afternoon project that can be completed with relative ease. It rewards you with

the performance and dependability of our meticulously engineered products, and it is an excellent opportunity to replace worn drive belts at the

same time. Before you begin, read and familiarize yourself with these instructions and make sure you have all the required tools on hand. Thank

you for purchasing our ECS Tuning Performance Power Steering Pulley. We appreciate your business!

Inspect your serpentine and air conditioning belts before beginning this installation (see page 11 step 10). If they need to be replaced, be

sure to order them so you have everything you need to complete the job. Belts for your application are available at

Step 1:

Safely lift and support your vehicle and remove any lower insulation panels or

skid plates that are installed on your car.

Begin by loosening the three bolts (arrows) on the original power steering

pulley using a 13mm socket. Do not remove the bolts at this time.

Leaving the belt on for this step will help hold the pulley to keep it from

turning while loosening the bolts. If it does slip a little, you will be able to

hold it with your hand as needed to loosen the bolts.

Step 2:

Using a small flat blade screwdriver, pry off the dust cap on the serpentine

belt tensioner pulley.

Step 3:

Engage the center bolt of the serpentine belt tensioner pulley using the

appropriate socket (see note below) on the end of a long handle 3/8” ratchet

or breaker bar.

Depending on model year and engine, the center bolt of the tensioner

will require either a 3/8 drive 16mm shallow socket or an 8mm Allen


Step 4:

Push the ratchet towards the passenger side of the car, which will cause the

tensioner to swing downwards, loosening the tension on the belt. As soon

as there is enough slack in the belt, lift it off the power steering pulley, then

slowly allow the tensioner to swing back up to its rest position. Position the

belt out of the way above the power steering pulley.

Step 5:

Remove the three power steering pulley bolts (loosened in step one).

Step 6:

Remove the original pulley from the power steering pump.

If the pulley is stuck due to rust build up on the pulley hub, use a small

amount of penetrating oil and gently lever between the pulley and the

power steering pump to loosen and remove it.

Step 7:

Clean the rust and corrosion buildup from the pulley hub using a small piece

of sandpaper or emery cloth.

This is very important even if the original pulley was not rusted or stuck.

The new ECS Tuning pulley has a tighter tolerance and the hub must be

clean to prevent damage or distortion when tightening the bolts.

Step 8:

Apply a thin layer of grease to the pulley hub. This will allow for easier

installation and provide protection from corrosion between the hub and the

new pulley.

Step 9:

Install the new ECS Tuning Power Steering Pulley onto the pump and thread

all three bolts by hand until they are fully seated.

The pulley should easily slip all the way onto the hub, allowing for easy

installation of the bolts. If the pulley is difficult to install in any way, remove

it and check for rust or corrosion on the hub (see step seven).

Step 10:

Before proceeding read the following serpentine belt information:

Worn Belt (L) and New Belt (R)

• If your new power steering pulley is an underdrive pulley, a shorter belt may

be required. Check the specific belt requirements at and see

 “Serpentine Belt Replacement”.


• If your new pulley is a standard drive pulley, closely check the condition of

your serpentine belt both visually and with a belt wear tester (ES#2642871).

Any cracks or wear on the ribs of the belt mean it should be replaced. For

replacement see “Serpentine Belt Replacement”.

If you are re-using the existing belt, continue with step 11.


Step 11:

Using the same method as used when removing the belt, swing the

serpentine belt tensioner downwards until there is enough slack in the

serpentine belt to loop it over the power steering pulley. Make sure the belt is

properly lined up on all the pulleys then allow the tensioner to swing back up

to tighten the belt.

Use a trouble light or flashlight to inspect the belt positioning on

all pulleys. If the serpentine belt is not properly aligned and seated

in each pulley, it may be damaged upon starting the engine.


Final Steps

Torque the power steering pulley bolts to 22 Nm (16 Ft-lbs)

Install the dust cap on the tensioner pulley.

Start the engine and make sure the belt runs true.

Re-install any lower insulation panels or skid plate.

Step 1: Belt Replacement

In order to replace the serpentine belt, the air conditioning compressor belt

must be removed. First, remove the dust cap on the air conditioning belt


Step 2:

Using an 8mm Allen socket and the same method used for releasing the

serpentine belt tension, swing the air conditioning belt tensioner downward

and remove the belt.

Step 3:

Carefully guide the serpentine belt around the radiator fan and out through

the top of the engine compartment.


Step 4:

Guide the new belt back in place. Refer to page 6 for routing.

Re-install the air conditioning belt and pulley dust cap.

Complete the pulley installation on page 12.


Interested in purchasing?

ECS Tuning BMW M52/M54 Performance Power Steering Pulley Installation

Free up horsepower and service your drive belts with the highest quality aftermarket and replacement parts.




Dorman Products: New Since 1918

Dorman Products is a renowned supplier of original equipment parts generally “exclusive” to manufacturer dealerships including replacement parts, hardware, brake parts, fasteners, and more to the automotive community. Their high-quality focus and unique components offered as an alternative to “genuine” manufacturer parts makes for a low cost, reliable, and often a more effective replacement for your beloved car.

Often, when we replace components in our cars, it is as a result of a mechanical failure or the part’s lifespan has reached its end. When it comes to mechanical failures, Dorman Products examines the causes of failure and develops exclusive replacement parts which address those faults seen in factory components. Many times they produce the only part that will permanently solve problems seen in failure-prone components across several makes.

With Dorman Products, you can be confident in their OEM quality and exceptional function while enjoying the benefits of maintaining your car with a part designed to outlast and outperform the original piece.

When it comes time to replace that faulty door handle or failing actuator, Dorman Products has the trusted parts with improved designs to give you the peace of mind the job will be done right once and for all. Beyond their meticulously engineered quality, a focus on OEM styling and fitment prevents any sacrifices often seen in aftermarket components that would deter purists.

Make your next replacement easy and permanent with Dorman Products high-quality replacement OEM+ parts, hardware, fasteners, and so much more!

Interested in purchasing?

Dorman Products

OEM fitment and quality with improved durability and reliability!


Power Stop Performance Brakes: The Right Choice

Similarities between performance cars and everyday commuter cars are incredibly limited. One crossover area that tends to hold uniform importance across all forms of motoring is the ability to brake properly. Put in simple terms, cars of all types need to match their braking force with how much power they produce. In this regard, choosing the right brakes is equally important; whether you are maintaining the grocery getter or improving your track fighter. PowerStop Brakes give you confidence in all situations.

Since 1995, PowerStop Brakes has provided excellent performance brake upgrades for an extensive range of vehicles. With focuses on providing OEM quality, copper-free, improved brake products, their customers can feel confident every time they mash the middle pedal.

When you know you are using quality parts, you experience a difference in confidence behind the wheel. When it comes to brakes, that feeling is expounded by the peace of mind you sense by using components you can be certain will keep your car out of sticky situations. PowerStop Performance Brakes not only allow you to experience that confidence but give you significant ethical advantages over similar replacement compounds. PowerStop Brakes produce their pads consciously of the environment!

PowerStop Brakes give you more than performance advantages in their makeup. All their pads are 100% Copper-Free. Copper and other heavy metals are known to cause major problems for fish and other aquatic wildlife when it is introduced to their environment in the form of brake dust. With the copper-free PowerStop pads, you know every time you hit the brakes you are making a difference by supporting companies who express an ethical drive to mitigate climate and ecosystem disaster.

Make the right choice when you go to service your brakes this season. Make the PowerStop Brakes choice and experience the advantages of quality, reliable, ethical, performance.

Interested in purchasing?

Power Stop Brake Products

Better stopping power, improved lifespan, and no copper!