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BMW 740i

Getting the engine and gearbox out of the car

Part 1:

In part 1 I'm going to get everything out of the way to get the engine out of the car. Since I want to change the gearbox as well I decided to get the lot out as one piece. What it takes to make room to do that I'll show you.

So, let's get started.

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First of all I had to get the bumper off, not very difficult as it is held by 2 giant bolts up front and a handfull of 8mm screws to fix the plastic part.

The order in which I took the various parts out and off the car is not very important as long as it all comes out. In the next picture you see the airfilter box removed.

After that I took the headlamps out, some plastic, the crossmember and the fan in front of the radiator which provides extra cooling when needed, and which is also part of the airconditioning system.

Next up is draining the coolant from the engine.

I disconnected all hoses from the cooling system. Since I didn't want to let the compressed gas (R134a) out of the airco system into the environment I left it hooked up. That gave enough room to put the plastic bracket which holds a number of different cooling devices aside. To the right you see the cooling pipe of the power steering.

Now I got a clean look at the engine itself.

I moved on disconnecting the wiring harness.

Because the airco system was to be left intact I unscrewed the compressor from it's bracket.

At this stage I didn't want to disconnect the oilfilter so I strapped it to the engine.

Time to disconnect the fuel lines.

Everything in the engine bay is now disconnected, including air hoses, vacuüm lines and what have you.

This concludes part 1, in part 2 I'm going under the car because there is a lot more work to do before the engine and gearbox can come out.

Part 2:

In this part the engine and gearbox are coming out of the engine bay, not without fiddling around to get it done. First I'll disconnect everything under the car.

I'll start with the support bracket halfway down the exhaust system.


Then I loosened up the crossmember which supports the gearbox. I didn't take it out at this very moment because it keeps the engine and gearbox from tilting.

Got the bolts of the driveshaft out.

Disconnected the exhaust left and right.

Disconnected the main power supply from the battery to the starter motor.

Let the exhaust rest on a block of wood so it won't stress the mountings at the backside.

Took the gearlever off of the automatic gearbox.

Put a jackstand under the driveshaft so it won't fall to the ground when I move the engine forward. Yes, I still have to take the heatshield off.

After getting the bolts off of the engine mounts it was time to get the engine hoist out.

I made a rail for the hoist because it doesn't work very well in the gravel, this way it just does what it's supposed to do.

Right, first problem. The exhaust manifold doesn't clear the the steering box.

Taking the power steering lines out looked like the way to go, no such luck! As good or bad as it was I took the exhaust manifold off. Loosening the bugger is one thing, getting it out from in between the engine and the chassis is another one.


And out it is, took a lot of praying backwards (swearing) but eventually I got it out.

And there it is.

Looking good! Yes, it's already dark but I wanted to finish the job at hand.

Getting the engine past the compressor of the airco took some time as well but I succeded. I can already see the gearbox leaving the engine bay. Jeey!!

And out it is!

Then I was left with an enormous amount of open space in the engine bay. The jackstand did it's work and caught the driveshaft perfectly.

And there it is, the lump of metal is out!

Time for some well deserved rest and a beer, in the next episode of this saga I'll separate the gearbox from the engine and start stripping the engine down.

Last update : August 24th, 2017

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