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Cruise Mode: bagged E28

13 November 2017



1984 BMW 520i E28

Name: Heino Wendzich // Age: 25
Location: Auckland // Occupation: Director, Autostance

NZ Performance Car: Hi, Heino. How’d you come to own your E28?
Heino: Hey. I’ve owned a few BMWs over the years and a couple of E30s, but always liked the shark-nose fronts and grilles on the C-pillars, etc. So, I kept an eye out for one and found this down in Christchurch in good condition.

It’s very clearly not at stock height any more — what’s the go there?
It’s on bags. No one does bags any more, I’m not sure why, and I really wanted to lay frame in it and spark while driving down the road. We did the install ourselves at Autostance, in collaboration with GT Refinishers. They are made from BC Gold coilovers with airbags replacing the springs, and an Air Lift [Autopilot] V2 digital system to control them. Grant from GT Refinishers ran all the hard lines and installed the tank in the boot.

It gets it right on the ground, too. Does it make for a good cruiser?
Oh yeah, it’s super comfortable to drive on. Since you’re effectively on coilovers, you don’t get that floaty feeling with heaps of body roll, and the bags help absorb any harsh impacts from the road. Unless you drive with it aired right out, of course …

Looks good, drives good, what else could you ask for? You mentioned that it’s had an engine build …
[Laughs] Yeah, when I bought it off the previous owner, it wasn’t running right. Turned out to be an easy fix, so I did a celebratory skid and blew the motor up. I was building a 2.8-litre stroker to replace it, but decided that, with my VK45 S14 on the go, it was too much tied up in cars. I got the M20 rebuilt instead; it’s not fast, but it’s fast enough.

And we have to ask: aired up or aired out?
Always aired out.

Good choice. Cheers for the yarn, Heino.

Engine: BMW M20B20, 2000cc, six-cylinder; reconditioned head; new cam belt, tensioner, and head gasket; modified sump; custom RX-7 radiator; viscous fan
Drivetrain: Five-speed; new clutch and flywheel
Interior: Factory; Infinity tints by Nick at Autotintz
Exterior: Resprayed in factory silver, custom pinstripe by Ben Phillips at GT Refinishers
Wheels/tyres: 17×8.5-inch (+15) and 17×9.5-inch (+20) BBS LM replicas
Suspension: BC Gold coilovers, converted to airbag suspension, Air Lift Autopilot V2 digital system, hard line and tank install by Grant at GT Refinishers


This article originally appeared in NZ Performance Car issue No. 250 — you can get your grubby mitts on a print copy by clicking the cover below