Current progress so far
Links to parts and information websites
Where I will be building my diablo
Where most of the important bits come from
The stuff it all bolts to
What makes it go
What makes it pretty
The cars nervous system
Where you sit
The gubberment bit
Who really cares?
Stuff that will not fit anywhere else
Other diablo replica websites


Due to the size of these pages, I have split them over a number pages for quicker loading. You can click on some of the images to link to a larger version:

» Index Page Introduction, About the BMW M70 V12
» This Page Engine removal
» Page 2 Fault finding, condition checking
» Page 3 Stripping and cleaning
» Page 4 Re-assmebly, Timing chain & heads
» Page 5 Ancillaries

Engine removal

First I think that I ought to point out that if you want to source a donor car and are thinking of removing the engine yourself, make sure you have at the very least a range of socket extensions and universal joints. Clearance is limited around the engine, so small hands are also an advantage. I would warn against anyone who thinks they can pull this engine on their driveway in a weekend with nothing more than a B&Q socket set.

Note: Several of the components used in this engine are of the torque to yield variety. This means that they will need replacing during reassembly. You can refer to the torque table here for relevant settings.

Here's a picture of the engine before major work began. The silver boxes in the bottom left hand corner of the picture are the two Motronic fuel computers and the EML unit. The missing box is the ABS/Traction control computer. You can see from the picture that the engine bay is really quite clean. At this point the bonnet is still installed on the car, and its one of the first things you ought to remove. Its also worthwhile raising the car a few inches to make it easier to work on. I had the benefit of a two poster ramp so I could place the car at any height I desired. Before I did anything else, I made a point of moving around the car and disconnected every single computer and module on the car, and made sure that the engine would still turn over without fault lights. My greatest concern was that the transmission control computer or vehicle alarm would cause problems, but to my great relief, the engine runs fine without any of them. At one point there were only a handful of relays and three fuses fitted to the car.

Next photo shows the engine shortly before removal. It helps greatly to remove the exhaust manifolds before attempting to get to the bell housing bolts. The flywheel is held to the torque converter with three bolts, a small access panel on the front of the engine allows access to these. You can see from the photos that all the cables and engine loom are draped across the top of the engine. This allows you to see if there are any other wires that should go to the engine that are still connected and could potentially snag the engine on its way out. The air conditioning needs to be evacuated now unless you want to remove the compressor and tie it out of the way. My air con system was empty due to a holed air con radiator, so I could just pull the lines and clutch wires from it without any problems. When removing a section of loom in this way, the best thing to do is not cut a single wire unless you are absolutely sure you don't need it. For remote items such as the throttle potentiometer etc, make sure you cut the wires past the components connector, you can reuse these and it makes future replacement a whole lot easier.

Here the engine is clear of the BMW. Its difficult to see, but this engine is pretty compact considering its a V12, its seems to be only a bit longer than the Rover v8, and its certainly more modern looking. The sump is an odd shape to accommodate the steering gear on the BMW, but will not be a problem in my application. The viscous fan at the front of the engine can be discarded as it will not be used. Examination of the engine at this point revealed a few interesting points. First was that the spark plugs at the rear of the engine on the right hand side (passenger side), had NEVER been changed. I found this amusing as the car had full BMW service history. The reason that they had never been touched is the brake servo is so close, limiting access to tools. Secondly, I discovered a broken HT lead and a bodged repair to another of the HT leads. It surprising the car ran as well as it did considering these faults with the ignition present.