19 October 2015

Warning Triangle and Easter Eggs

The M coupe did not come with any "Easter egg" surprises really.  Unless you count "hey, the windows don't go all the way down" or "No, for the 8th time, it's not an M3, it's an M coupe" or "why doesn't the sunroof switch light up?".  The car is basic and purposeful without any frilly treats.  I'm fine with that, and I suspect you are too.

But, when you buy a used one, you might just find an Easter egg or two like I did.  You might find a few unwelcome surprises as well...  One of the unwelcome ones was finding that the battery did not have the proper vent tube installed.  It was just gone.  I replaced it with new parts from BMW, readily available and easily installed.  In the process of having the rear hatch pieces out, I discovered the 2 surprise Easter eggs on this particular car: a new, never-used blue box OEM BMW warning triangle, and the right hand side tool kit holder.  This car was run in Germany for a few years, so there is a chance the warning triangle was required to be there in order to operate in Germany.  LeatherZ sold many triangles over the years.  We used to trade our parts for Euro-only parts like triangles and first aid kits with an enthusiast in Sweden.  There is a chance on the of the previous owners bought the triangle from us, I suppose.

BMW USA did / does sell warning triangles, but they are not the exact part number spec'd for the M coupe.  They are generic ones.  The trick is, the correct warning triangle is only reflective on one side.  Therefore, if you are a jackass, and BMW or the US DOT evidently thinks US drivers are, you might put the warning triangle facing the wrong way in an emergency and it will not be effective.  The Europeans apparently, let the driver assume the responsibility of some actual thought.  The generic BMW triangle is reflective on both sides so theoretically it is impossible to set up wrong.

The tool kit plate, while unfortunately missing the Z3 jack and lug wrench, was not stock on the M coupe.  Normally there would be a plate that would allow you to store the owner's manual in that location.  I had planned on upgrading the tool kit plate anyway, so both were a nice surprise.  When I bought the car, I was so focused on looking for rear subframe damage, I didn't even notice the tool kit plate!

I do not have an original European first aid kit for this car yet.  But I do like to carry first aid kits.  I bought one similar to the European unit from Amazon for about $17 and I am using that until I can find an original.  The Amazon kit is similar and size and fits into the proper location.

Aftermarket first aid kit installed in factory location

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