BMW 3 E46 (1998-2005) bi-xenon – Halogen headlights (Bosch/AL)
This BMW 3 E46 retrofit kit contains everything you need to convert your halogen setup into powerful bi-xenon projector headlights. Featuring custom-made mounting brackets, all the correct wiring and a selection of OEM-style shrouds, it makes retrofitting quick and easy. And, most importantly, it will take your 3 to the next level – just check out the test pictures! This is way beyond what the majority of OEM projectors can achieve.
Of course, with the Mini H1 being such a common retrofit, there are plenty of cheap kits on the market, many of which are claiming superiority by labelling themselves version 6.0, 7.0, etc. But names are pointless here; what matters is the actual output, so we’ll let the test pictures speak for themselves.
You get what you pay for.
Retrofitlab’s Mini H1 series are without question the most popular bi-xenon designs in our range, and for good reason. These are in fact the very brightest projectors available for direct mounting in H4 and H7 reflectors! The Mini H1 Primo is our original design. It provides a dazzling light output unmatched by most OEM projectors. Yet, this is the more basic of the two models. The Ultimo is our new Mini H1 design. Going beyond even the Mini H1 Primo, it offers a further 20-25% improvement in light output! In addition to its superior reflector, the Ultimo also features improvements such as a rock-solid threaded bulb mount and an alloy steel lock nut. For a side-by-side comparison of the Mini H1 Primo and the Mini H1 Ultimo, check out this video. You can select the Ultimo or the Primo in the options menu above. No matter which model you pick, you will enjoy crystal-clear 2.5 lenses, color temperatures ranging from 3,000K to 6,000K and a wide low beam with a bright hotspot and sharp cutoff. The high beams are like the sun – truly impressive for a projector this compact.
Such a light output would not be possible without efficient ballasts, and the included Aharon digital ballast has – as opposed to many other aftermarket units – been tested to generate a full 35W. The Aharon comes in a rugged and extremely compact housing perfect for retrofitting, and its in-wire starter warms xenon bulbs in as little as five seconds. It is also Canbus-proof, so you won’t get any bulb failure readings on your display. This ballast is the perfect complement to the included BMW 3 E46 wire harness, which connects directly to the original wiring. A high beam splitter is also included, making for easy integration of the bi-xenon mechanism. Power supply is strong, steady and reliable.
The Aharon ballast ensures that you get maximum possible light output. However, any ballast with AMP connectors is technically compatible with this kit.
This complete BMW 3 E46 retrofit kit is inspected by our internal quality control prior to shipping and comes with a solid 2-year warranty. It also includes highly rated technical support from your lighting experts at Retrofitlab.com
Should you have any questions prior to purchase, please refer to our FAQ page or start a chat below. You can also download our free brightpaper on automotive lighting. Nothing beats making an educated decision!
We look forward to brightening your day (not to mention your night)!
This is a fairly easy retrofit that even complete novices can do, but those with more skills and experience will be quicker. Discounting removal and replacement of the headlights, you could expect the job to take anything from less than one to two hours.
You have to open the headlights, but with the E46 headlights, that's only a matter of opening the clips.
The video is not 100% complete, our apologies. Some additional info;
- The mounting of the shroud can be seen in this video. Please note that the fumes from glue (for example silicone) can react with plastics and/or chrome on the shrouds. So please be careful with the glue and don't seal the headlight too fast to prevent the fumes to damage something.
- In the original halogen headlights made by ZKW a custom mounting ring needs to be used (supplied), in the Bosch/AL version this is not used/needed.
- The projector must be mounted with the high beam solenoid (mechanical part on the projector) downwards.
- The H1 bulbs contain an adapter wire from H7 to 9006 (original H7 halogen connector to the 9006 oval connector on the ballast). There are E46 models with a 9006 connector instead of H7 and you can connect the original 9006 connector directly to the ballast and the H7 to 9006 part does not need to be used.
In general, please use gloves to prevent fingerprints (for example on the shrouds). And also to prevent that the bulb is touched with the fingers.
For instructions, please refer to the video and our general Mini H1 retrofit kit fitting instructions PDF
Want to have the kit installed by a professional? Check out list of installers
These products are not ECE-approved and must not be used on public roads in any exterior application. Use on public roads will invalidate both the operating license and insurance coverage.
The product images shown are for illustration purposes only and may not be an exact representation of the product. Actual products may vary due to changes in manufacturing/product enhancements.
The product/kit pictures can differ from what you have received/will receive because we use generic pictures for the kits. Because with all the different options/product changes etc. it's nearly impossible for us to take pictures for all the kits we have and with all the different options. For example, butyl sealant can be shown in the picture, but with headlights that are originally sealed with butyl, it won't be in the kit.
This complete kit has been especially developed to enable retrofitting at home, saving you the cost of installation. However, should you prefer to have a professional carry out the retrofit, you can simply mail your headlights to the nearest participating workshop. They will then perform the retrofit and return the upgraded headlights to you, ready for use.
Please note that, for professional retrofits, you should order your Retrofitlab kit or parts directly from the workshop in question (it saves you money on shipping).
To find the nearest workshop, please refer to Professional retrofitting