BMW 3 E46 Headlights

Do you own a BMW 3 E46, and you want to know exactly which headlight you have and what options are available to repair and improve your headlights? Don't look further, because this is where we will explain it once and for all. The BMW 3 E46 was and still is a very popular car. With probably the best headlights for Bi-xenon projector retrofits since the front lens can simply be removed by unclipping it. Some of us retrofitters wish they designed all headlights like this. You can find 12 different E46 headlights on the market, made by 2 different headlight manufacturers. Due to all the options, here's a list.

Model Manufacturer Type
E46 compact (all years) AL Halogen H7
AL Bi-xenon D2S
E46 saloon/wagon/ coupe/convertible Pre-facelift (1998-2001) AL Halogen H7
AL Single xenon D2S
AL Bi-xenon D2S
E46 saloon/wagon Facelift (2001-2005) AL Halogen H7
ZKW Halogen H7
AL Single xenon D2S
ZKW Bi-xenon D2S
AL Bi-xenon D2S
E46 coupe Facelift (2003-2006) AL Halogen H7
AL Bi-xenon

Which manufacturer? (ZKW or AL)
If you have an E46 saloon or wagon with xenon lights, you might not instantly recognize which headlight you have because they are almost similar on the outside. But here's how to find out. You can find the manufacturer of you headlight via the logo on the front of the headlight (ZKW) or the sticker on top;
  • Logo: Check the logo on the front of your headlight lens (see picture below).
  • Sticker: Check the sticker on top of the housing. A white/silver label is a ZKW headlight, a yellow label is AL. Don't be confused with the smaller WARNING sticker because this sticker is yellow on both headlights.
ZKW headlight BMW 3 E46

Single or bi-xenon AL headlights?

When you have AL headlights there is a simple way to see if they are single or bi-xenon. The bi-xenon version's notches are not fully circular, there are no notches above the projector. While the single xenon has smaller projectors and the notches are also added above the projector. In addition see the example pictures below; Left: Bi-xenon. Right: single xenon.

BMW-3-E46-single-xenon-bi-xenon-AL-headlight

Left: Bi-xenon. Right: single xenon.

What to buy?

Now you know what type of headlight you have and the brand, you can find our solutions here;
For the halogen headlight (AL or ZKW) this is the bi-xenon conversion kit; BMW E46 Halogen to bi-xenon

For the AL single xenon headlight this is the bi-xenon Aharon halogen to bi-xenon kit conversion kit BMW E46 Halogen headlight to bi-xenon

AL single xenon to bi-xenon conversion kit; BMW E46 AL single xenon to bi-xenon

For the ZKW bi-xenon headlight this is the Aharon bi-xenon repair / replacement kit; BMW E46 ZKW bi-xenon kit

For the AL bi-xenon headlight this is the Aharon bi-xenon repair / replacement projector; BMW E46 AL bi-xenon projectors