Oh BMW cupholders. Have they ever made one that was good or in a convenient place? Probably not, because the Germans believe you should drive, not eat three double cheeseburgers with a 88oz big gulp on your way to work. That being said, us Americans love to have our favorite grande caramel low fat soy sugar free vanilla frozen frappe while driving our Bavarian masterpiece through the suburbs of our metropolitan city. Because of this many companies over the years have had great ideas to add cupholders to our older BMWs. The e30 chassis never came with cupholders from the factory, but what if I told you there is a company that sells one that looks like it came from the factory?
If you haven’t heard of Kooglewerks, you should take a moment out of your day and google their website or check out their Instagram. Forrest Koogle is one talented guy, with a craft that is slowly dying off in the wake of 3D printing. He is a designer, and fabricator making one off parts for just about anything you can think of. His claim to fame are handmade, custom aluminum air dams that will honestly boggle your mind when you see them in person. They are pure perfection, and to be hand made, with manual tools is complete artistry.
But enough with air dams, we came here to store our overpriced coffees. The Kooglewerks E30 cupholders are molded out of plastic with a beautiful texture to them that matches the interior of the E30 perfectly. The cupholder replaces the factory ash try/front cubby, and includes a marine grade 12V cigarette style outlet to charge your favorite electronic device. The product comes with the installation hardware, which only takes one screw. To install, you will need to remove two phillips screws to release the ashtray, and place the Kooglewerks cupholder in its place. Very cleverly, Forrest designed the cupholder hold down screw to be in the exact space as the factory hole, so the modification can be reversible. Nice touch.
So how does it work? Well let me preface by saying, since BMW never designed cupholders into this chassis that there is always going to be a give and take with whatever aftermarket cupholder you use. The Kooglewerks E30 cupholder looks aesthetically beautiful. It perfectly fits into the cubby and has the great texture found all over your BMW. The two cupholders come out far enough where they don’t hit the bottom of the HVAC unit when a beverage is in place. The downside is the size of the holes, although this is due to the size constraints Forrest was working with. The holes can easily fit your favorite can, or coffee cup, but will struggle fitting anything bigger, like a Gatorade bottle, or big gulp. For your convenience, the size of the holes are about 2.75 inches by 1.25 inches. The other downside is losing the cubby space for your wallet, change, or any other junk you want to throw in there. The plus side is there are huge map pockets on the door for those types of things, or you could still use the second cup holder for your change.
All in all, I am pleasantly surprised with this design. The quality is top notch, and Forrest did a great job solving an issue for us cars and coffee guys. If you are in the market for a clean OE looking cupholder for your E30, I really suggest you check out Kooglewerks. Tell him I sent you.
Build It. Race It.