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The Tire Rack - Performance Specialists

Interested in having us take a look at your E46 M3 products? Drop us a line at:

This install takes 5 - 10 minutes.
Click on the images for larger views.

Step 1: Getting the required items together

This install requires:
  • Turn Signal and/or Brake Bulbs
  • A BMW M3 (E46).
  • 5 - 10 minutes of free time.

Step 2: Releasing the rear light assembly

  • From inside the trunk, locate the light assembly at the rear of the trunk (directly behind the exterior lens).
  • Note the interior light located at the back of the assembly.
  • At the fender side of the interior light note the location of the release tab (see image).
  • Push the tab toward the center of the car - you will feel the assembly come free.

Releasing the Tab

Releasing the Assembly

Step 3: Inspecting the assembly

  • Pull the assembly back and let it lay on the trunk floor.
  • Note that there are 3 bulbs - 1 Orange (turn signal) - 2 Clear (brake) - see image.

What Goes Where

Step 4: Removing the bulb(s)

  • Press down gently on the bulb you wish to remove.
  • While depressed, rotate the bulb counter clockwise to release it from the socket.

Exposed Socket and Bulb

Step 5: Replacing the bulb

  • The bulb has three tabs along its base.
  • The bulb will only fit into the socket one way (no chance of a screw up!)
  • Rotate the bulb to align it with the recesses in the socket and gently push it in.
  • You will feel the bulb hit bottom and depress the bottom of the socket - at this point rotate it about a quarter turn to clockwise, until it stops.
  • Make sure the bulb is in place by giving it a gentle tug upwards.

Step 6: Reassembly

  • Note the holes inside the light lens assembly from inside the trunk.
  • Line up the bulbs with the holes and snap it back into place (see image for step 2 - "Releasing the Assembly").
  • You're done!

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