Classic Italian ’60s style door handles in stainless steel


We have developed a set of classic 1960’s Italian style door handles which are designed to operate with the BMW Z3 door mechanisms.  Before digging too deep into the product why not download and review some of the thinking that has gone into the design and development of these handles. You can find it in our reference library here.

The key features are:

  • Beautifully styled and manufactured
  • Marine grade mirror polished 316L stainless steel (expect it to stay looking great)
  • Built in lever to actuate the Z3 door latch when the push button is pressed
  • Built in system to replace the conventional push button door lock opening system
  • Built in KEY UNLOCK (Check compatibility at the end of this description) facility to unlock the system (Behaves as if the internal door pull had been actioned)
  • You can use the same key to open the Grassbank Classic Italian style boot handle
  • Available for both RHD and LHD cars

Basic car kits often come with basic components. Door and boot handles often fall into this category: find something that will do the job and move on. Many kit car builders end up buying either plastic (boot handles) or chromed (door handles) or looking for something else to make things better.

We decided that the best approach for us was to create a set of handles which would look good, leverage the modern central locking features of the Z3 and that will last. Our new range of door and boot handles completely fulfill that remit and do so at a price point which is very similar to chromed versions that are already out there but which have not been designed to interoperate with the Z3 system. It’s important to emphasise the benefit of stainless steel. Chrome products occasionally arrive in tatty, bubbly condition and soon deteriorate further. A better quality chrome job can double the initial cost of the product. Mirror polished stainless will neither bubble nor fade. You may choose to polish it from time to time but it just works.

So we have two options and an installation kit. Choose between the basic “ENTRY” push button system and a “DRIVER’S” system which includes a driver’s side key lock.

The  ‘ENTRY‘ option includes a pair of handles each with a spring loaded push button and a built in lever which, when the button is pressed can operate the Z3 latch release. The second  “DRIVER’S” option replaces the driver’s side push button with a lock barrel, a pair of keys plus an additional lever which can be configured to operate the Z3 central locking system (specifically unlocking). This feature allows you to UNLOCK the car, the central locking is still used to LOCK the car, effectively this is a ‘get out of jail’ facility in case the central locking solenoid dies after 25 years of use or perhaps the battery is flat and therefore can’t operate the central locking system. The “INSTALLATION KIT” can be bought with either option and completes the job by providing all of the cables, cable guides and door end covers, see the list below and the associated images.

Choose the ENTRY option if you want a pair of handles which will operate the built in lever. You will have your own preferred method of attaching the lever to the door latch.

Choose the  DRIVER’S  option (Check compatibility at the end of this description)  if you want a regular push button on the passenger side and a key operated lock on the driver’s side. You might want this in case you have concerns about getting locked out of the car when the battery dies… It happens. With it you will have your own system for operating the push button latch release and for fixing the key operated lever to the central locking release on the Z3 door lock.

Choose the INSTALLATION KIT if  you want all of the bits and pieces to complete the installation in as simple a way as we could make it.(Check compatibility at the end of this description).

The installation kit includes all the (stainless steel) cables and stainless steel ferrules for fixing the cables at each end. A pair of matched cable guides which mount at the door lock mechanism end and which steer the push button and key operated lever cables to the corresponding mechanisms on the door lock assembly. We also provide a jig for setting everything up and a pair of shiny covers to make the door panel beautiful again while hiding any access hole that you might have made to mount everything. We also provide all of the fixings, pretty comprehensive eh?

If you already have a satisfactory pulley and cable management system then this kit isn’t for you.

If you’ve bought from us previously and want to upgrade from one option to another then give us a call and we’ll sort something out for you.

The INSTALLATION KIT  includes the following

  1. A pair of matching shiny stainless steel door end cover plates which hold the cable guides and hide the access hole
  2. A matched pair of cable guides which steer the cables from the handle levers to the actuators on the Z3 door latch
  3. A jig for fixing the cable guide before final assembly
  4. Flexible cable and ferrules for securely fixing the cables to the devices at either end
  5. Stainless steel fixings (Studs, Flange nuts and Screws)

Compatibility check

This is important. This check only relates to the driver’s side door lock. If you want to be able to unlock your driver’s side door with the key then you need to have the correct lock mechanism. Please refer to the last image in the photo gallery. We have circled the lever that the key operates. If your driver’s lock does not have this lever then you will not be able to unlock the car with the key.

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Additional information


Entry, Driver's, Installation kit