The Art of Heritage

Heritage -- it is the timeless legacy that runs deep as blood, bonds strong as family, and triumphs even when bonds and blood diminish. For Michael Richardson and his father, heritage, under the signet of the uncanny blue, black, and white of Bavarian Motor Works, has been utterly, gracefully, and deeply defined.

Hailing from Bavaria, Germany, the Richardson family have always had a deep connection to BMW: Even miles away from their place of birth, Micheal, the son, maintains his origins through a 2002 E46 330ci while his father does the same in a 2007 E92 335i -- both of which were tuned with and alongside one another.

BMW tuning seems to hold just as long of a history as BMW itself -- as such, Michael's E46 spent little time in its fully OEM condition. With a freshly rebuilt clutch, Michael installed a BMW performance shifter with weighted shift knob, BMW aluminum racing pedals, and aluminum gauge rings in the dash. Making our way outside, Michael explains his suspension setup: Meyle Heavy-Duty tie rods and front control arms in conjunction with polyurethane bushings navigate the E46 on H&R Cup Kit springs. He then proceeded to compliment the already gorgeous aesthetics of the E46 by installing Eagle Eye pre-smoked LED tail lights, 1157 LED switchback bulbs with load resistors, Xenon headlights with 8000K bulbs within the 6000K Orion V2 Angel Eye DRL's. In addition, Michael opted for flat black kidney grills, flat black headlight housing, smoked corner lenses, side markers, and reflectors. For stance, Michael favored a set of 18x8.5 et35 (front) and 18x9.5 et37 (rear) BBS LM-replicas, wrapped in Bridgestone Potenza run-flats in 225/40 and 255/35 profiles. These gorgeous wheels mutually accent and are accented by a set of drilled and vented aftermarket rotors, creating an overall function-orientated yet gorgeously elegant architecture.

Michael's father took a similar, function-based route when modifying his E92 as well. Under the bonnet, Michael's father installed a Dinan-tuned ECU, UUC light-weight flywheel, and Clutchmasters clutch kit -- all complimented by a UUC Motorwerks short shifter kit. Outside, the most dominant feature of the E92 is the staggered set of 19x8.5 and 19x9.5 (et35-squared) wheels, wrapped in 245/35 and 265/33 Continental ExtremeContact DWS -- subtly sitting on Eibach Pro Kit springs. Aesthetics that compliment the large-lipped wheels include smoke tail-lights, side markers, and reflectors, along with an ACS front-lip, M-tech II rear bumper, and paint-matched kidney grilles. A carbon fiber trunk lip, carbon fiber side-mirror overlays, carbon fiber front splitters, and carbon-fiber, Hamann-replica roof wing create an overall appeal that deeply compliment the beautiful factory lines while adding an athletic and aggressive undertone. Inside, a digital gauge from organically displays turbo boost, coolant temperatures, speed, and even 0-60 times.

While both Michael and his father plan for future mods, Michael intends to swap the M54 for an S54 and invest heavily in both cosmetic and performance modifications. Meanwhile, his father plans to do the same, accenting the cosmetics with a CF M3 GTR hood, ADV wheels, and subtle performance modifications. However, at their current states, Michael thanks Corey Thorpe, Dave James, and while his father thanks Corey Thorpe, Dave James, and everyone at Racing Trenz.

It's hard to deny that there is something everlasting when it comes to BMW's -- and this isn't simply because of the automotive craftsmanship that is deeply invested into every series of their cars -- nor is it the decades of tuning that the company has been associated with. Rather, the legacy of BMW (and manufacturers like it) is found in the heritage of people like the Richardsons, who sustain, fight for, and prolong the roots of a company while celebrating the art of tuning. Michael's own words best testify to this idea of the art of heritage: "My Dad and I are both addicted to Bavarian Motor Works; their famous 3 series is a part of our heritage and will probably run in our family years to come."

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