Going back a couple of months to Eurokacy 2011, I got the chance to meet up with Manolo Velasco in Montreal, Canada as he took home the trophy of the lowest ride at the limbo competition. 2 months later I was reunited with Manolo’s brother Carman at Vagkraft in Toronto and the rest is history.
Owning one of the most well known bagged BMW Z4’s (if not the only one) on Schmidt TH Lines, Manolo is one of the Velasco bros that decided to go original with his daily/winter beater project. Being a licensed truck mechanic, Manolo’s air suspension install was nothing too rough to him to install.
The project was just one of many as he’s also managed to bag a MK2 Jetta. Being in the scene for more than 10 years, his choice to lay frame in a Z4 was narrowed down pretty quickly due to the originality of it all.
This ride was an experiment from beginning to end to install air suspension due to the fact that no one had made a kit for it at the time he was looking to install it so there was a lot of trial and error in this build including blowing up some Firestone bags used on MK4 VW’s… I guess he learned the hard way on what not to do but looking at how the car sits today, it was well worth it. A custom setup of UVAir bags were pulled over Raceland coilovers up front and UVAir Air bags were custom attached to the rear.
To match the custom bags, a very simple custom set of switches were installed by Manolo to control the ride height of his bagged Bimmer. A 3 gallon tank, 1/4″ asco valves running 1/4″ lines throughout the car, and a glow shift digital air gauge round everything off.
Big shout outs go to TM Tuning for hooking him up with the 17×9.5” front and 17×10.5” Rear Schmidt TH Line wheels that accent this ride oh so perfectly. More thanks go out to everyone that helped him along the way including his Kool Haus peeps, his brother Carm, Marky Mark (scooch) for helping with the mounting fabrication , Kevin at AAC in Markham (couldn’t get the bags without him) and his friends Jaime and Paul for helping out a lot with the air suspension build.
Now to brother Carman’s E30.As I was talking to Ricky on our 6 hour road trip to Toronto this weekend about possible project cars we’d like to bag, my constant love for E30’s was never ending. Long story short we pulled in at our buddy Susannah’s pre Vagkraft party and noticed Carman’s ’87 BMW 325 laying low, before I knew it I was all over it. It was at that moment that we made our way to Carman to dig up more info on the ride that’s nearly impossible to beat in style.
Many mods including a full MTech 2 Body kit with a molded E36 M3 front lip onto the MTech one, full Bronzit beige metallic respray and blacked out shadowline are the esthetic markers of this stunning E30.
Rolling on staggered Keskin KT1 wheels in a gangster fitment, Carman added 5mm front and 15mm rear spacers to his 17×8.5 and 17×10 ET20 wheels to end them with a final 15mm front and 5mm rear offset.
Out of all the mods, a lot of them are under the hood boosting ponies with a 1994 M50B25TU engine swap, Getrag 255 transmisson, lightweight flywheel, SACHS’ sport clutch, and custom headers and exhaust.
All of these mods bring yet another beautiful and bagged E30 into the world but the thing that makes it stand out the most are the UVAir Aerosport front bags, relocated spring perches, custom strut mount and bearings and Bilstein sport struts with Uvair Air House 2’sout back coupled to Koni SA’s shocks, relocated air fitting on the bags and custom bag brackets. A simple 2 switch management setup pretty close from his brother is what’s used to make it go up & down. Here’s the breakdown:
- 3 gallon tank
- 3/8″ lines
- 4-valve system, Asco 3/8″ valves
- 3/8″ in-line flow controls
- ViAir 400cc compressor
- Everything is mounted in the spare tire well
- Toggle switches retro-fitted into centre console
- ViAir dual-needle gauge
From the AirSociety partners, you guys rock the BMW scene and we enjoy all the chats and time spent with you guys, can’t wait to party it up at H2O in September!