Meet the M3 GTS-alike 330i E92 with a real taste of North East humour to go with the Fire Orange paint.
For as long as anyone can recall (and I am old and soaked in the lore of Ancient Bass my young Padawans…) there has been a Bassmechanix Oop North. North East to be exact, and while the legendary installs have rolled, one after another, down the years, their legend grew.
Driven by one of the most persistently, even annoyingly cheerful and ebullient souls I have ever met, Monty, is a bearded geezer in a turban who is a force of nature and a joy to be near. He’s a fuggin’ hoot. Not one word of exaggeration, this is a simple truth and I have known him well for years, despite my living in London. I reckon we have shared three dozen or more events at car audio things down the years.
So I can tell you that Monty’s style has more panache than most. For while pretty installs and good work are more available in the UK in good installation houses these days than in history, his stuff has fun as well. Not as insane as ‘Fishman’ Rivera of the USA, whose every demo job had a poor suffering goldfish in a tank in it, but always fun. And more than this, he makes sure the job will fit the owner like a condom. Snug.
And meet Matty McDonald, a lad with some styling urges and a crew he is a piece of, with a car he could afford to put an all-new system in.
However, after looking at the car and the owner, Monty suggested the addition of a quality boot build alone, with sound-matching and OEM-blending by a cunning thingummy called an RE-Q made by MTX of America. It takes the speaker level from the factory system, beats the equalisation curve flat again – as these are usually messed around with by the car makers for their own reasons – and then puts out a nice signal-level RCA output to feed amplification. In this case a really high quality, but not silly, big amp by Rockford Fosgate.
It drives two Punch P2 series tens. These have two coils each, so one mono amp is hooked by cunning devices to all four two-ohm voice coils. It’s what’s called series-parallel hook-up and is about running that amp HARD at two, not four ohms. That means Matty gets his 250 watt and the rest, since these top-end brand amplifiers from the aristocracy of Yankee car audio, typically drop up to a third more power and way more on peak.
So, when a sudden boom go pow, Matty has a half kilowatt of bass in his kidneys. Nice.
This makes his other speakers feel good. They need do so much less. No silly sod is asking them to do deep bass any more and so they go louder, sound better and way more than just adding a thud, the seriously well-tuned subwoofer, integrated by furry ears that are in fact golden under that turban, makes the whole system sound lovely.
From my point of view it is a bit depressing for speaker makers as the old adage that “ALL OEM speakers are rubbish” is over. Because a lot are not. Yes, you CAN upgrade BMW stock speakers and lots of kits will drop in but this subwoofer installation, done this way will make 95 percent of everyone, let alone other Bimmer Bwoys, pig sick with envy if they cop a bellyful of Matty’s tunes. And the rest of the car ain’t bad either. From the M3 GTS-inspired styling, to those carbon dipped GTS style rims and of course that lairy paint. This BM is truly orangey boom!
OWNER: MATTY MCDONALD
TECH SPEC: BMW E92 330I
The car’s BMW original audio equipment front end drives all its watts into just the front speakers and there is an MTX RE-Q processor taking the audio from the rear speaker leads and shaping it to feed a Rockford Fosgate PRIME R250X1 monoblock bass amplifier. This is installed with a Rockford 4-gauge wiring kit and drives two Rockford Fosgate Punch P2 two-ohm, dual voice coil, 10-inch wide subwoofers in a ported enclosure in the boot. Perfectly balanced, the driver has a Punch EQ control to increase the weight and kick at will.
These cans are ‘DFA’s. The clear lid with the emergency alert is not really for smashing as it is plastic and the ‘Bru cans were covertly pierced and their contents sucked out like the yolk from a holed egg, by Monty before installation.
Made to look like an M3 GTS, but just slightly better than a stock one, subtle and clever. Carbon fibre splitter, AC Schnitzer roof and rear boot spoilers, M3 body kit, with welded-in rear arches by Carl McGorie. GTS style wheels with carbon dipped finish.
Lowered by 30mm on replacement springs and Matty cannot for the life of him recall their brand –
just that it is 30mm and they were made, not butchered.
BMW seats, most things that can be unclipped and painted Fire Orange, have been. This is a genuine BMW shade and was only on GTS M3s.
Pipercross panel filter on air intake, stainless steel Powerflow exhaust with AC Schnitzer quad rear pipes.
Monty at Bassmechanix, Summer Maddness and Carl McGorie for the
Words Adam Rayner Photos Chris Wallbank