E30 M3 convertible
Production Data
Special Versions
Colors and Upholstery
Production Versions
BB01: European-spec without catalyst (200 hp), 06/88 through 09/88 & 04/1989 through 06/1989
BB05: European-spec with catalyst (195 hp), 07/1988 through 09/1988 & 03/1989 through 06/1989
BB05: European-spec with catalyst (215 hp), 03/1990 through 06/1991
What makes the E30 M3 convertible unique?
The E30 M3 convertible combines the drivetrain, chassis and much of the bodywork from the E30 M3 sedan with the open-top body style of the E30 3 Seres convertible.
Where was the E30 M3 convertible first introduced?
A six-cylinder E30 3 Series convertible prototype with M3 bodywork and all-wheel-drive was displayed at the 1985 Frankfurt motor show. The production version, with the four-cylinder S14 engine and rear-wheel drive chassis, did not appear until the middle of 1988.
Where was the E30 M3 convertible built?
Because of its low production volume, the E30 M3 convertible was assembled by hand at BMW M's Garching facility, much like the E28 and E34 M5s. Bodies were supplied from the normal E30 assembly lines, then fitted at Garching with the special drivetrain, chassis and interior.
Production Data
How many versions of the E30 M3 convertible were there?
There were three versions of the E30 M3 convertible, all in left-hand drive and all built to European specification. Cars produced in 1988 and 1989 use the standard 2.3-liter S14 engine in either non-catalyst (200 hp) or catalyst (195 hp) form. After nearly a year out of production, a second batch of catalyst-equipped cars was assembled starting in March, 1990. These have the later 215-hp version of the S14 engine.
How many of each version were produced?
BB01 (ECE, non-catalyst): 136 produced from 06/88 through 09/88 & from 04/89 through 06/89
BB05 (ECE, catalyst/195 hp): 174 produced from 07/88 through 09/88 & from 03/89 through 06/89
BB05 (ECE, catalyst/215 hp): 476 produced from 03/90 through 06/91
How is the E30 M3 convertible mechanically different from the hardtop version?
Aside from the structural reinforcements fitted to all E30 convertibles, the E30 M3 convertible is mechanically identical to the hardtop.
How is the E30 M3's chassis different from that of the closed version?
The E30 M3 convertible uses slightly different springs and shocks to compensate for the car's added weight (increased by almost 400 pounds over the coupe). The suspension, steering, brakes, wheels and tires are otherwise identical to those of the E30 M3 coupe.
How is the E30 M3 convertible cosmetically different from that of the sedan?
The E30 M3 convertible shares most of the coupe’s body panels, save for the trunk lid, which is a stock E30 convertible item and is not equipped with a rear spoiler. The convertible top is also identical to the one fitted to the regular E30 models and is power-operated as standard.
How is the E30 M3 convertible's interior different from that of the sedan?
Like the closed car, the E30 M3 convertible's interior features sport seats, an M steering wheel (in one of two versions) and the M instrument cluster. The convertibles were also fitted with the "M3" door sill plates used on the M3 Evolution models. Cars equipped with optional leather upholstery have the M tri-color stripes on both front and rear seats, as well as unique door panels with diagonal pleating.
What items were optional on the E30 M3 convertible?
The E30 M3 convertible was generally equipped with more standard features than the closed car. All were fitted with power windows and a power-operated folding soft top. The standard E30 M3 options were all available, as was a removable hardtop with rear window defroster and an extended leather interior including leather on the center console, door panels and door pulls. A number of special-order features not found on the usual option list (phone, fax, suede interior trim, leather dashboard, etc.) could also be requested due to the model's hand-built assembly.
Special Versions
Were there any special versions of the E30 M3 convertible?
There were no official special editions of the E30 M3 convertible. However, one example (VIN EB85020) has now been confirmed to have been fitted by BMW Motorsport with a 220-hp Evolution II motor. It remains unclear if this upgraded engine was fitted to the car during initial assembly or soon afterwards, though it is more likely the latter case.
Color and Upholstery Selections

The following chart lists all regularly available paint colors for the E30 M3 convertible.

Diamond Black metallic 181 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1991
Alpine White II 218 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1991
Misano Red 236 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1989
Nogaro Silver metallic 243 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1989
Sterling Silver metallic 244 BB0503/1990 through 06/1991
Macao Blue metallic 250 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1991
Brilliant Red 308 BB0503/1990 through 06/1991
Jet Black 668 BB0503/1990 through 06/1991

The following chart lists all regularly available upholstery colors for the E30 M3 convertible.

NOTE: Black extended Nappa leather and Silver extended Nappa leather were also available in conjunction with Nappa "Textil Webstruktur" leather (Option 785) starting from 3/90 production.

Anthracite cloth 0304 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 09/1988
Silver cloth 0305 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 09/1988
Anthracite Motorsport cloth 0344 BB01, BB0506/1989 through 06/1991
Silver Motorsport cloth 0345 BB01, BB0506/1989 through 06/1991
Black extended Nappa leather 0226 / 0318 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 09/1991
Silver extended Nappa leather 0227 / 0319 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1991
Natur extended Nappa leather 0231 / 0320 BB01, BB0506/1988 through 06/1991
Lotus White extended
Nappa leather
0462 BB0505/1991 through 06/1991