N20 engine swap

image Ok I was a busy boy today,,,,I dropped that N20 motor and trans today,,,,I got the new motor today,,,,got the motor in 1 day because there was only one N20 engine in all of America ,,,,,so we got a rush on it before someone else got the engine.image This motor is very easy to remove,,,plenty of room in the engine compartment,,,,,hopefully I can do the job in the aloud factory time limit of 16 hour,,,,,today of 6 hours of work,,,,I removed the engine and trans,,,removed the old engine,,,swapped over the new engine,,,,and swapped over the intake manifold,alternator,a/c compressor and starter motor,,,,tomorrow hopefully I can finish it,,,,that would be nice,,,,,what to get done with this motor.

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30 Responses to N20 engine swap

  1. ninja_zx11 says:

    Good work my friend!!

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  2. An Lam says:

    did you have to calibrate the ecu for the new engine? I did an N20 swap on an F10 body and I can’t get the engine to start. It fouls plugs almost immediately

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    • No you don’t have to calibrate the dome for a new engine,,,,but did you calibrate the fuel injector for each cylinder.

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      • An Lam says:

        yes, I calibrated each injector, but it still won’t start. The plugs still foul out very quickly. it sounds like it wants to start and immediately shuts off. I’ve even put new injectors with new plugs and still fouls out very quickly. Before the original engine died, the computer went into limp mode and transmission is stuck in neutral. would that prevent the new engine from starting?

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      • Yes that could cause the problem,,,why is the dme in limp mode and trans in neutral

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      • An Lam says:

        I assumed the dme was in limp mode because the old engine died. Oil pimp chain broke and caused the engine to overheat and through a rod. Can it be cleared with the DIS tool or do I need to go to the dealer?

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      • You should be able to clear it

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  3. Lenny says:

    Is it an AWD chassis? Because KSD allocates almost 50 hours to engine r/r procedure in 328xi/528xi

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    • KSD only 16 hours for N20 engine swap,,,AWD can’t be that much more,,,,I don’t know anything that pays 50 hours,,,I rebuilt a N56 with a new block and pistons and swap over crankshaft only pays me 26 hours

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  4. UltimateDrivingMachine says:

    Hello BMW tech. I recently read an article that made me kind of mad. It was an article about engine reliability and engine failures. The article was fairly new too. It ranked BMW as the 2nd to last in engine failures. I thought BMW engines were pretty reliable and made to drive hard? How reliable is the N51/N52 engine in your experience? How many miles do they usually last? Thank you for your input as always!

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  5. UltimateDrivingMachine says:

    Good to know the engine is reliable. What do you think about the GM transmissions on the 328i coupes? Are they reliable?

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  6. Darren says:

    Hi, I did a engine swap on my n20 328i and now I have vibration only at 800-1000rpm revving up or rpmdown. The symptoms exist in P/N/D at the same rpm range. I replaced engine mount, checked downpipe fitment, replaced o2 sensors, crank pulley and belt tensioner.

    Do you have any clue what I can check next? The replaced engine was 3000miles old by the way.

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  7. turbocharged says:

    Hello, i got N20 with a broken timing chain. Should i rebuild it since its an interference engine, or just swap it out? if i swap it out, anything special i gotta do, in regards to reprograming anything? Whats the software for the injector calibration, e-sys? NCSexpert? thank you!

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    • I would rebuild it if there was no damage to the Pistons at the cylinder head and valves,,,,,if they are damaged then I would do a engine swap,,,you will have to calibrate injectors or swap over your old injectors and put them into the same cylinders

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  8. michalthenerd says:

    Hey bmwtechnician, thank you so much for all your helpful advice and information, especially with the N20 Timing chain/turbo oil feed line stuff.

    My 2013 X3 just seized up at 72k miles, i’m likely going to have to replace the engine completely. Do you know if there’s any compatibility issues between N20’s in terms of AWD -> AWD cars or RWD -> AWD?

    Got any advice for the replacement?
    I’m a mechanical engineer so I’ve got the affinity for it but I’d rather ask the seasoned professional/expert, your knowledge is much more valuable than anything else.

    Also, since BMW is in court this next week for the timing chain issue/oil pump again for an extension, do you happen to know if BMW had covered costs by people doing work themselves as opposed to going into a shop and having it done there?

    Thanks brother. Love from New York

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    • Yes I would stick with the same engine RWD with RWD and AWD with AWD nothing comes to mind but knowing BMW there probably is something stupid different with the engines,,,,lol,,,,,and no we haven’t heard anything with customers being covered on cost for doing there own repairs,,,,the only time BMW did that was on the E46 rear taillights would burn out due to a bad ground in the taillight,,,,I can’t see BMW paying anyone back if they don’t have to.

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  9. M W says:

    Hey BMWtechnician, Best BMW Blog on the net!
    So I bought a 2013 BMW F25 that’s had its engine replaced. Looking at the BMW dealer invoice, Exchange Short Engine p/n 11-00-2-420-311 is listed and although it has the word “short” in it and a lot of parts catalogs show a generic image of a cylinder block instead of an entire engine, is this p/n really a remanufactured long block?

    I’m inclined to think so as the cylinder head has a Feb2015 casting date on it and if I look in the oil filler hole, I see a bearing cap that appears to have an ’18 date stamp. I really want to know what this engine is – mainly to figure out if what kind of timing chain troubles I might be facing in the future… I might also guess that BMW contracts someone here in the USA to reman core returns… You happen to notice where those old engines get shipped to?

    Thanks a million… Cheers to 2021?!?!

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    • So it sounds like the used a reman short block and reused the old cylinder head,,,,now hopefully they installed a new timing chain and rails,,,,the reman engines are all done by BMW no outside contracts,,,,the only outside contract is for BMW seats are made by a outside company.

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  10. Ronnie Smith says:

    Can I use an N26 engine long block to replace my N20 that took a dump? Realize I will have to use components from my n20 2012 BMW 328i automatic

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    • No that will not work,,,wiring harnesses and DME are not a match,,,,also some of the other components from the N20 will not work on the N26

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      • Ronnie Smith says:

        Thanks and apologies for the double post. Didn’t think first one went through. Appreciate you clarifying. There a lot of misinformation floating around online. Glad I dug a little deeper.

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  11. Ronnie Smith says:

    Hello BMWtechnician.
    The n20 in my 2012 328i automatic took a dump and I’m looking to replace it with aN engine from a salvage car. Will a n26 long block work? Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

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