"In this Special Series, I document his experiences with the new S65/S85 Clubsport Manual Transmission Package from TTV Racing.
It's a new option that creates interoperability for common S85 manual conversions and a proper, complete upgrade for the S65 and V10 USDM manual guys.
In this entry, I chat the original E60 M5 manual transmission and Eugene from Yevs Builds unboxes & installs the kit. I take you through the products' features along with inputs from Ben at TTV Racing."
Hindsight is 20/20
Much is made about the E60 M5 in 6spd manual these days, yet as with anything E60, the polarity is mindblowing. A recent prime example iis Bring A Trailer fetching 127,000$ for a 10,000 miles E60 M5 in late 2022 while well maintained SMG M5s can be had in the 20,000$ range.
I understand the market dynamics: only 1,366 E60 M5s were ever produced in manual over 20,548 units. It's a vastly different market to the M3 V8 with a ratio of 2:1 DCTs to manual transmissions where there are little price differences.
The SMG3 wasn't 100,000$ bad, nor was the manual 100,000$ good - but I understand the desire and need to row gears on a V10. It's an undeniably special feeling.
[...] but it was a marketing bandaid.
The E60 M5 was introduced in 05' by BMW M's marketing department as the descendant to the F1 car - it had to be special. For once, BMW M beat Porsche at something: they drank their own koolaid by releasing the M5 V10 exclusively with a D mode.
Gerhard Richter, the development chief of BMW's M division "practically gnashed his teeth in frustration" when he told MotorTrend the M5 would be made available with a six-speed manual transmission in 2007.
The E60 M5 got a manual transmission in 2007 to the behest of North American M customers.
They nerfed it.
They took their GS6-53BZ manual transmission fitted to the N54 and N62 powered series cars and bolted it to the S85 - without any modifications.
It was considerably slower than the SMG as it retained the 3.62 final drive and it lacked a 7th gear. To top it off, it had un-defeatable traction control, lacked an oil cooler and was fitted with the signature, rubbery and high shifter.
By all professional accounts back then, the manual transmission fitted to the E60 was crap. Edmunds overheated their demo car after 12 minutes of aggressive driving.
For as much some hate the SMG3, it was fitted with its own oil cooler with air channelled via NACA ducts in the flat under-tray.
The M3 V8 evolution.
The GS6 was also used in the E9x M3, fortunately it had an oil cooler and was fitted with a different rear end than the DCT (3.85 v 3.15). This made for a more responsive and durable powertrain.
Still, there were issues: the entire flywheel and clutch package was revised in 2009, forcing 2008 owners to replace both when the clutch wears out.
Both of these are true: BMW M either continuously improves upon their first MY or screws over their first year buyers.
A new performance package.
TTV has developed a complete package for anyone using the combination of an S65, S85 and the GS6-BZ manual transmission, of any years.
Unfortunately, I don't own a manual V8 M3 anymore. I couldn't test this on my own and I wanted someone that could document his installation and impressions to quality standards.
Eugene from Yevs Builds is documenting his journey as he builds an E46 M3 with an S85 V10 and GS6-BZ on his own, in his garage along with a few friends.
I have been following his build since I bought my E60 M5 V10 in 2021 as he took apart, refreshed and honed his S85 in his own garage - he's mad, mad cool!
Eugene is your next door M enthusiast: he owns a street E46 M3, amongst a few others.
One of those is the legendary E39 M5. His entire YouTube playlist rebuilding the heads of his S62 videos are here.
But the big ticket here is his in progress build on a 2nd E46 M3 with an S85 V10, E9x M3 6spd transmission with the goal of building a track beater.
We had been chatting for a while on and off until he asked whether anything existed in regards to S85 flywheels - a virtual handshake deal later and that was that.
Eugene got the kit earlier in August and posted his initial impressions here and later uploaded his unboxing and installation video to his YouTube channel.
I highly recommend you subscribe to his channel if you're into in-depth, detail oriented yet fast paced DIYs. Eugene keeps it fun, and chill at all times.
The pictures below were taken by his friend. The section below is co-edited by Eugene and I to showcase his impressions, along with technical features provided by Ben at TTV Racing.
TTV Racing packages their flywheel very well. In over 100 sets + provided over the years, DHL has yet to damage any in transport.
The kit comes in two boxes as to avoid transport damage between the clutch components and the flywheel. While it's a lightweight kit, it's still heavy.
The complete kit includes the pressure plate, floater plate and clutch plate along with clutch discs and the flywheel along with the bolts to assemble the clutch to the flywheel.
The complete kit is labeled "Performance" as it is very light, coming in at 14.5 kg. The OEM S85 flywheel weighs 14.3 kg for comparison.
As usual, TTV machines their flywheels from forged carbon steel. Yet, this design is weight optimized as it is matted to a TTV specific race clutch. As always, the assembly is dynamically balanced by TTV in-house.
The flywheel is further machined down to reduce weight compared to the lightweight flywheel that fits with the OEM S65 clutch.
The twin disc clutch.
The twin disc clutches are also machined from carbon forged steel with the spline being made from stronger material than the Genuine BMW components.
They are labeled for proper orientation when installing to avoid premature wear.
The friction materials are a cerametallic high temperature compound specifically chosen by TTV Racing for this application. The clutches are able to hold beyond 850 ft lbs.
The two discs are separated with these drive plates. They are designed and machined to reduce weight while meeting the necessary requirements to hold it all together.
The pressure plate.
The pressure plate is also a custom design from TTV Racing yet remains compatible with the OEM throwout bearing. You'll also find the signature "Made in England" engravings on this section.
On comments about weight, Ben at TTV Racing was adamant the "Performance" moniker shouldn't keep you away thinking this would be a ridiculously heavy clutch.
"I would expect it to feel heavier rather than lighter but a lot of people say this clutch feels like stock. That’s the beauty of a twin you don’t need such a strong spring :)"
The kit does not come with crankshaft bolts. It uses Genuine BMW S55 crankshaft bolts (SKU: 11227520706). You will need to source these separately.
It's a rebuildable kit.
The pressure plate, floater plate, and both drive plates are the only wear items in the kit. The replacement parts are just under 1,000$ - at worst.
Ben at TTV Racing was again very confident in the product, stating the parts to be rebuilt would be evaluated with customers.
"This would be on a case by case basis the clutch is very durable we rarely sell spares for them."
It's easy as [...]
Eugene has had the engine in and out of the E46 chassis for test fitment and adjustments to various parts. He bolted the flywheel in no time. First things first, he aligned the proper bolt hole with the starter.
This is done by matching the slightly uneven hole on the flywheel, with the one on the crank.
The teeth on the flywheel and the gap are precisely machined for the crank position sensor DME calculations. If this was wrong, the car wouldn't crank..
The clutch components were assembled and mounted to the flywheel. The clutch bolts are torque to is 22NM /16lbft tightened in a criss cross pattern. Instructions are included in the box.
Tadam! From this angle, you can better see how TTV reduces the package's overall rotating diameter to 215mm - it's how it reduces its overall weight, and rotational inertia.
Up next: Eugene wraps up his build and starts her up.
We'll loop back in with his driving impressions specific to the lightweight drivetrain package.
His E46 M3 will be a track beater. It will be a great test of driving and endurance.
You can source the kit for your S65 or S85 6spd year long here.