The hood release handle on the E36 (and E36/7/8) cars are flimsy, weak, plastic levers that really don’t convey the look and feel of a quality part.  They’re known to snap, leaving you to get creative when trying to pop the hood.  Fortunately there is an excellent and affordable solution.

Doug Whalen, the creator of the “Whalen Shift Machine” line of weighted shift knobs, also offers a hood release lever.  Like his shift knobs, these shift levers are CNC machined from solid metal, aluminum in this case.  He also offers them in either bare aluminum finish or a more stock-like black anodized coating.

I have one of these pieces already installed on my M Coupe, so why not upgrade the ’98 M3 Sedan as well.

Whalen Hood Release Front Whalen Hood Release Back

The lever is simple to remove and install, just held on with a phillips head screw.  The back of the lever is machined to match up to the stock mechanism.

Be sure to check out Whalen’s website for these and other cool parts.  Like his Z3 Delrin seat bushings, which my M Coupe also has.


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