If the Bavarian spice is not enough for you, these are the names to know. Take a look at our selection of the best BMW tuners available in the global market
M is a very powerful letter for BMW fans. It represents Motorsport, the division that creates performance versions of all its cars. We can summarize its importance by stating it has authored legends like M3 and M5. However, we also have to say that there are more companies that do it. What great news that is!
As it turns out, there are several other companies around the world that specialize in BMW tuning. That is to say, they deeply study its cars so as to identify the best ways to make them even more exciting in terms of design and performance. Here, we are going to present ten BMW tuners that deserve your attention.
Based in the German city of Aachen, this company also works with Mini and Land Rover vehicles. Decades ago, it was even related to a racing team. Nowadays, it specializes at BMW cars and does an amazing job at that. The blue i4 shown below is only one of the most recent examples of AC Schnitzer’s expertise.
As usual, the tuner offers both individual items and full tuning kits. The latter are very interesting because they enhance the original design rather than changing it. The fact that it uses materials such as aluminum and carbon fiber helps make its tuning lightweight, which is essential when your goal is performance.
- Schnitzer Motorsport had a long-lasting racing partnership with BMW until 2020.
- Besides BMW and those other makers, AC Schnitzer also works with motorcycles.
- The tuner’s building also houses some car firms, boutiques, and a luxury restaurant.
This is the most popular BMW tuner besides Motorsport. It was founded in 1965 and has only deepened its connection with the automaker over time. Nowadays, it executes some production activities at BMW’s own plant, such as the B7’s production. That has granted it the status of car manufacturer in Germany.
Their relationship comes from decades of excellence. Alpina started by developing a new carburetor for a BMW car, and its quality earned a certification from the company. While its racing operations came to an end in 1988, the company is now a reference in BMW tuning. It was acquired by the German maker in 2022.
- Alpina used to be a typewriter company and once tried its chances in the textile industry.
- Since Alpina is listed as a manufacturer, its cars are registered with that brand, not BMW.
- The tuner makes sure to hand-build many components, even though it limits its capacity.
Based in the North American state of Virginia, this is actually a sports car team. However, it only operates with BMW and also supplies all kinds of replacement parts for its vehicles. Both divisions were founded by James Clay and are independently owned by him to this date, which is quite rare to see in this industry.
As we once wrote, automakers often preserve a close relationship with racing. The investments there yield results that can easily be adapted to urban cars, and that is productive from both marketing and technical points of view. Bimmerworld can also build racing cars for regular customers, in case you are interested.
- The team usually runs with BMW’s 3 and 4 Series, especially in their M3 and M4 versions.
- After starting with sprint races, the team has diversified to many other forms of motorsports.
- It also participates in End Alzheimer’s, a charity race that raises funds for medical research.
Another USA company, this time from Alabama. Steve Dinan’s company was founded in 1979 and sells its aftermarket parts through authorized repair shops, its own website, and even some BMW dealerships. The tuner’s overall quality makes the car retain its warranty and qualify for the Certified Pre-Owned program.
Dinan Cars has traded hands a few times over the years. While the founder stepped out in 2015, his name was preserved. The tuner has a history of building racing engines for BMW cars to compete in the Grand Am Rolex Sports Car Series Daytona Prototype class. It also offered Mini performance parts up to 2006.
- The company was originally founded in Morgan Hills, CA. It went to Opelika, AL in 2018.
- Some of its performance packages require over 30 hours of work to be properly installed.
- The Dinan 8, based on the first BMW 8 Series, had a production run of fifty units in 1991.
Founded in the German region of Neu-Isenburg, the tuner went through an impressive expansion process over the years. It started developing individual performance parts for BMW cars like silencers, then slowly went up to full projects. It now operates in Aichach, a city located in the Bavarian region of the country.
Nowadays, G-Power works with Mercedes-Benz cars as well, but BMW tuning remains its primary object. It builds turbochargers, software modifications, widebody kits, chassis alterations, and many other improvements. G-Power’s latest big project is the Hurricane RR: it is based on the BMW M5 F90 and reaches 232 mph.
- The X6M Typhoon uses several propietary hardware and software upgrades to reach 750 hp.
- In 2014, G-Power tuned the BMW M4 with custom turbochargers to reach 680 hp and 330 kph.
- In 2012, the 1 Series M coupé reached 600 hp and became the fastest of its kind in the world.
Richard Hamann founded his tuner 37 years ago in Laupheim. The initial goal was to work only with BMW tuning, but the venture eventually expanded into many other carmakers. Nowadays, it can offer cosmetic accessories, aerodynamic upgrades, performance parts… It even acquires crate engines to improve them.
Once the company began to tune whole cars, it became a big branch of its work. You can specify between discreet and flashy design, but they all make sure to preserve the base car’s identity. Hamann has become one of the most prestigious automotive tuners in Europe, with its projects exposed in international shows.
- Hamann once built a BMW M3 with a turbocharged 2.3L engine which generated 348 hp.
- The tuner can also reinterpret the original body, adding visual items of its own concoction.
- In its vast history, Hamann has tuned car models from Fiat, Lamborghini and Porsche too.
While this tuner is no longer active, its work remains interesting for us to know. Herbert Hartge founded it in 1971 in the German city of Merzig and moved to Beckingen in 1974. The tuner would also operate with Mini, Juno, and Range Rover vehicles, and provided high-quality tuning upgrades of all types for them.
In terms of BMW cars, its specialty was to fit engines of large cars into smaller ones, such as applying the 5 Series’ to the 3 Series. An interesting touch is that, just like Alpina nowadays, Hartge once reached the status of manufacturer. Its tuning projects could be officially registered as Hartge cars rather than BMW.
- Another similarity with Alpina is the use of one specific rim design in all projects.
- That engine swap would be irrelevant these days, since many cars share a few engines.
- Hartge made many projects on 1980s cars, a time when BMW had many iconic models.
Before founding the tuner in 1987, Horst Lumma showed his passion for vehicles by building a racing kart on his own. Lumma Design started its operations focusing on converting urban cars into cabriolet or pick-up. The former was particularly common among BMW fans, because everyone appreciated their final look.
Over time, the company expanded its operations by upgrading performance parts and refining its classic conversions. The latest projects feature improvements of all kinds, such as engine tuning, widebody kits, and even new styling elements. The German tuner specializes at BMW, Porsche, and Range Rover models.
- All procedures at Lumma follow the latest ISO standards to pursue high overall quality.
- Lumma performs several experiments with its body kits to ensure pedestrian safety.
- Besides full cars, the tuner also sells aerodynamic parts for many cars, even classic ones.
At a first glance, this tuner offers more of the same. Decades of experience, focus on German automakers, and a variety of modifications available. However, Manhart turns out to have a strong “philosphy”, to use their term, as well. That is centered around optimizing the car’s power-to-weight ratio with their tuning.
This tuner believes that design and performance are not tied. You can request a project to be as powerful as you want, yet completely flashy or discreet. If you want, the tuner is also open to work on custom cars, with multiple bespoke improvements. Manhart was founded in 1986 by Günther Manhart in Germany.
- Just like Alpina and Hamann, Manhart has become a global reference in BMW tuning.
- Audi, Land Rover, and Porsche are some of the other companies with which it operates.
- The M3 has been used several times. One was for the MH3 V8 R Biturbo, with 743 hp.
This tuner started with high-luxury cars like Rolls-Royce and sports cars like Ferrari but, later, opened itself to other brands. Over the years, it has grown enough to acquire part of Rinspeed and create a global network. It has become famous for its flashy designs and for the boldness to execute them on exotic cars.
Founded in the German city of Brand, the tuner gradually grew and moved a few times up to the current city. It currently employs 182 professionals and has partnered with other companies over time. This is yet another global reference in terms of BMW tuning. Its projects are frequently featured by the press.
- Besides many European countries, Mansory is also present in China, North America, India, and Japan.
- It usually tunes its cars with flashy paint jobs on the outside, using colors like turquoise or bright red.
- In 2012, Mansory partnered with Lotus to take care of its cars’ bodywork, service, and trim services.
BMW tuners in a nutshell
|BMW tuner||Home town||Foundation Year|
|AC Schnitzer||Aachen (Germany)||1987|
|Bimmerworld Racing||Dublin (USA)||N/A|
|Dinan Cars||Morgan Hill (USA)||1979|
|Hamann Motorsport||Laupheim (Germany)||1986|
|Lumma Design||Winterlingen (Germany)||1987|
|Manhart Performance||Hückelhoven (Germany)||1986|