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  1. #1
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    87 535i VS 87 535is?

    According to the Bently, the serial # says I have a 535is. The only performance item not seen on all 535's is the LSD (not the Timothy Leary kind) and the 5 speed. Most is's show a rear spoiler and a front valance like the M5. Or have most people upgraded to the M5 style body stuff? The owner's manual doesn't give any specifications for an "is" - only gives specs for 528e, 535 and M5. I did pick up a 535is/M5 valance at the junkyard on friday though, $30 with fog lights. Someone got the easy part before I got there, the rear deck spoiler.

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    Sport seats came in the is model, vice the flat/

    wider seats with the arm rests. The rear spoiler and front valance were stock on the is as well.

  3. #3
    Joe in NJ
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    Re: Sport seats came in the is model, vice the fla

    Plus, the 535is had the M Tech suspension with Bilstein Sport Shocks and springs...

  4. #4
    THD
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    Not the "M5" suspension

    The 535is came with progressive rate springs and Bilstein shocks. Ride height is the same as the M5. The sway bars (aka anti roll bars) are the same as the 535i. I guess you can call this an M-Tech suspension... but it is not the same as the M5. The M5 had much larger sway bars, different rate springs and a self leveling rear suspension.

  5. #5
    Joe in NJ
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    Re: Not the M5 suspension

    BMW called it the M Tech suspension, not me...

  6. #6
    John
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    Re:sport shock are not shorter, just stiffer

    Amazing the long lasting untruth that Bilstein sports are shorter. Right now I have a set of rear HD and sports and they are the same length. The sports are stiffer and have 5 instead of 3 spring perches. I have the front Bilstiens that came out of my Euro 535 and some sports, and the sports in this case are longer and stiffer. Of course this could be debated but I have had many sets on the floor at once and am here to tell you they are the same length. Don't take my word, check with shox.com. The 535is had the same size sway bars as the regular 535 and the M5 had much larger bars.

  7. #7
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    Not exactly, Joe.

    "Plus, the 535is had the M Tech suspension with Bilstein Sport Shocks and springs..."

    No; it didn't. The 535is had a suspension identical to the 535i except for slightly more aggressively valved Bilstein shocks (NOT Sports, which are shorter, and NOT Heavy Duty, which are more firm) and a few (not all) had a *slightly* larger front antiroll bar.--
    C.R. Krieger
    '78 R100RS Motorsport

  8. #8
    Joe in NJ
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    Re: Not exactly, Joe.

    The 1987 5 Series Sales Catalog and tech information states that the 535is came with an M Tech Sport suspension.... Was that just sales mumbo jumbo? My car is stock, still has original shocks and it sits an inch lower than my stock (Still original shocks) 87 535i...

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    Sorry; I don't check in much.

    As for the "M Tech" suspension, yeah; that's about it. Puffery. Different shocks in most cases. A different antiroll bar in some. Otherwise just the same. Does your 'i' have gas shocks (Boge Turbo, f'rinstance)? That could be the difference in ride height.--
    C.R. Krieger
    '78 R100RS Motorsport

  10. #10
    Joe in NJ
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    Re: Sorry; I don't check in much.

    No, I have yellow Billstiens

  11. #11
    John
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    Re: 87 535i VS 87 535is?

    in all cases I've seen (a lot!) the is had front air dam, rear spoiler, sport seats, Bilstein sport shocks, auto or 5 sp., LSD (not the hard to find stuff) and an s behind the i on the trunk

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    Re: 87 535i VS 87 535is?

    Didn't the 'is' had the matching painted rear view mirrors?

  13. #13
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    Painted side mirror housings for '88 535is only.


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