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Lambow
01-02-2011, 06:46 AM
Deciding between 550i and 550ix. Live in Northeast and currently drive E39 M5 (use snow tires in the winter). Is there a difference in performance and handling in dry conditions (probably only need awd 10-14 days per year)?

I am getting the M Sport package so I assume I will need snow tires in either case.

Also, do you think by not having the ix in the northeast will impact resale when I sell?

Which car is everyone buying in the Northeast or in similar climate areas?

Thanks!

richschneid
01-02-2011, 07:40 AM
I had an E39 M5 from 2002 until 2005 when I got my '06 650i. I just got the 550i xDrive. The 650i handled better than the M5 but was not quite as fast off the line. The 550i xDrive is faster off the line than the RWD 550i because you don't get any wheel slippage. The 550i xDrive is a little faster off the line than the E39 M5, around 4.5s or 4.6s compared to 4.7s for the M5. The 1/4 mile times are almost identical, 13.2s @ 109 mph.

The xDrive, I think handles better than the RWD because understeer is almost eliminated by the instantaneous rear to front torque transfer. It's almost uncanny.

The only area where the M5 is better is the maximal lateral g forces because my M5 had summer max performance tires, Potenza S03 Pole Positions, and the 550i even with the sport package comes with grand touring tires. The xDrive 550i comes with all season grand touring tires. No optional tires are available. You can get better summer tires and use snows in the winter. I have Blizzak LM-25s performance snows on my 550i xDrive. I would not drive in the snow in Pittsburgh with all seasons.

My dealer tells me 80% of the 550i's he sells are xDrive and the resale value should be better.

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 07:48 AM
Deciding between 550i and 550ix. Live in Northeast and currently drive E39 M5 (use snow tires in the winter). Is there a difference in performance and handling in dry conditions (probably only need awd 10-14 days per year)?

I am getting the M Sport package so I assume I will need snow tires in either case.

Also, do you think by not having the ix in the northeast will impact resale when I sell?

Which car is everyone buying in the Northeast or in similar climate areas?

Thanks!

I live in upstate NY and have ordered the 550xi with M sport. I test drove the 550i, and felt the xi actually felt better to me from a pure driving feel perspective. It has a different steering setup than the 550i. It felt more grounded to me. However, there are some forum members who swear by the 550i with the IAS (and 6 spd) for the best BMW driving experience. When I tested the 550i, I was early on in my research and do not know if it had IAS. As you have an M5 (keeping?) you will want to pay close attention to the setups and options so you can decide what you want from the car. Is this an M5 replacement?

The M sport, 550 xi comes with all season tires. I believe it will have better resale in the northeast, but not necessary because it is better, but will be perceived so. With only a few weeks of need for all wheel drive you must live somewhere other than snow country here in upstate? Some members from Chicago area appear to use snow tires on 550i without a problem. Pharding (forum member) has posted some excellent info from his experiences.

I believe there is a difference in handling feel between 550i and 550xi, but this only comes from test drives. There are many here on the forum with better knowledge from owning and extended driving experience. It took me some time just to find the 550xi to test drive.
Mine is on order, but I have time to change and am continuing to learn and benefit from knowledgable members here. Extended test drives are a must. You don't say if you have test driven any cars? If I can find a 550i manual, I will drive it to re-evaluate.

Will be interested to hear your thoughts as you evaluate.

dalekressin
01-02-2011, 07:50 AM
I had an E39 M5 from 2002 until 2005 when I got my '06 650i. I just got the 550i xDrive. The 650i handled better than the M5 but was not quite as fast off the line. The 550i xDrive is faster off the line than the RWD 550i because you don't get any wheel slippage. The 550i xDrive is a little faster off the line than the E39 M5, around 4.5s or 4.6s compared to 4.7s for the M5. The 1/4 mile times are almost identical, 13.2s @ 109 mph.

The xDrive, I think handles better than the RWD because understeer is almost eliminated by the instantaneous rear to front torque transfer. It's almost uncanny.

The only area where the M5 is better is the maximal lateral g forces because my M5 had summer max performance tires, Potenza S03 Pole Positions, and the 550i even with the sport package comes with grand touring tires. The xDrive 550i comes with all season grand touring tires. No optional tires are available. You can get better summer tires and use snows in the winter. I have Blizzak LM-25s performance snows on my 550i xDrive. I would not drive in the snow in Pittsburgh with all seasons.

My dealer tells me 80% of the 550i's he sells are xDrive and the resale value should be better.

The E39 M5 is a beauty.
I'm surprised to read these compelling statistics for the 550XI as compared to E39 M5.
The M5 price/value ratio is getting quite high for most owners to justify. Reliability and warranty issues need a close look as well. For these reasons I understand the thought in going 550XI.

simonjb
01-02-2011, 07:56 AM
I had a 2008 550i and loved the car. However, the traction in winter and fall (leaves) was not that great. The new 550ix has been great so far in the snow and wet.

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 08:06 AM
I had a 2008 550i and loved the car. However, the traction in winter and fall (leaves) was not that great. The new 550ix has been great so far in the snow and wet.

Are you driving on the OEM tires or did you get snows?

Bruno008
01-02-2011, 08:35 AM
My last RWD was a 1995 MB C280. I loved it for 355 days every year and hated it for the 10 or so days when we had more than 1" snow on the ground. Snow tires offered only marginal improvement. I later owned a C320 (then an E500) 4matic with AWD and I stayed in love 365 days every year -- they were fantastic in snow with all-season tires. Five weeks, and one big snowstorm, into my F10 550ix, my total comfort with winter weather forecasts continue. IMHO, if you live in an area with more than two expected snow storms per year, there is only one way to go; unless you have a separate winter car. BTW, for those who might say the RWD BMWs are better in the snow than MB, my buddy has an E39 530i and his experience is very similar to mine from the RWD MB.

pharding
01-02-2011, 08:48 AM
In Chicago my 2011 550i with winter wheels and tires works great. This is my fourth 5er since 2001. Without winter wheels and tires, using summer high performance tires and wheels in the winter the car doesn't handle as well it should, but it is close to adequate. In the winter, winter wheels and tires are more than adequate for my needs. Personally I don't understand the need for x-drive 5ers in the Chicago area.

highyo
01-02-2011, 09:58 AM
as previously stated, i think that the Xdrive variant's steering feels much more connected. for that reason alone the Xdrive is worth the extra money. also it's probably faster off the line than the RWD if that floats your boat

Lambow
01-02-2011, 10:10 AM
Very interesting stats richschneid. Thanks.

Helpful comments all around!

I would have though that i would be quicker and more agile than ix since the i is lighter.

Trading in M5......LOVE the car, but it's time to replace it. I used Dunlop WS M2 in the winter without much problem.


M Sport Package includes performance tires on 550i and all-season on 550ix. I have always used performance tires in summer and snows in winter. Do those who have ix use the same all-season tires in winter?


I have only test driven 550i, but not ix. Is there a discernible difference in driving characteristics?

A bmw sales guy said the i would be closer to handing of M5.???????

dalekressin
01-02-2011, 10:17 AM
Very interesting stats richschneid. Thanks.

Helpful comments all around!

I would have though that i would be quicker and more agile than ix since the i is lighter.

Trading in M5......LOVE the car, but it's time to replace it. I used Dunlop WS M2 in the winter without much problem.


M Sport Package includes performance tires on 550i and all-season on 550ix. I have always used performance tires in summer and snows in winter. Do those who have ix use the same all-season tires in winter?



A bmw sales guy said the i would be closer to handing of M5.???????

:thumbup:
I have only test driven 550i, but not ix. Is there a discernible difference in driving characteristics?
I would not make the decision based on forum opinion alone. Find and XI and drive it.
I have a 330XI and my dealer CA said XI is a little harder on tires. Not my experience however.
:thumbup:

DXK
01-02-2011, 12:07 PM
Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
1) On the ice / snow, other than uphill and from the start, RWD with snow tires will outperform AWD with all seasons, but not AWD with snows.
2) AWD only comes with all-seasons tires. However, the performance tires on RWD are not the untra high performance type that you get with M5 or E60 sport.
3) AWD is higher off the ground.
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.
5) If you drive with all-season tires all winter, your tires will need replacement sooner than if you have dedicated winters.
6) RWD is faster from the rolling start and faster as the speeds increase, AWD is faster from the start to about 60mph.
7) AWD is more expensive.
8) AWD is heavier.

Lambow
01-02-2011, 12:35 PM
What do you mean that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not? Is this accomplished in RWD by changing driving mode (normal, sport etc)?

DXK
01-02-2011, 12:50 PM
Normal, sport refers to dynamic drive. Please make sure you understand the concept before you make your purchase.
In regards to steering, the hydraulic steering in xi is mechanical, but electric steering can be upgraded by software alone.

Lambow
01-02-2011, 01:08 PM
My understanding of Dynamic Drive is that it allows you to adjust the transmission (throttle response) and chasis (steering) to a more sporty ride (e.g. Sport/Sport+ modes tighten the steering and gives quicker throttle responses). Is this not right?

What software changes can you make to the steering of 550i?

DXK
01-02-2011, 01:31 PM
The software I refer to is done on the factory level, it's not driver adjustable. BMW is able to fix / change the steering feel and so on by software flash.

Lambow
01-02-2011, 01:34 PM
Thanks for clarification. Are you buying from Herb Chambers in Boston?

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 01:45 PM
Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
1) On the ice / snow, other than uphill and from the start, RWD with snow tires will outperform AWD with all seasons, but not AWD with snows.
2) AWD only comes with all-seasons tires. However, the performance tires on RWD are not the untra high performance type that you get with M5 or E60 sport.
3) RWD is higher off the ground.
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.
5) If you drive with all-season tires all winter, your tires will need replacement sooner than if you have dedicated winters.
6) RWD is faster from the rolling start and faster as the speeds increase, AWD is faster from the start to about 60mph.
7) AWD is more expensive.
8) AWD is heavier.

With regard to 3) I thought it was the xi was higher?
With regard to 6) Read the many thread debates on the forum. Has this been conclusive via track test times?
With regard to 7) If RWD is optioned with IAS, it is close in price to AWD.

Thanx. for the feedback.

DXK
01-02-2011, 01:46 PM
You're quite welcome.
No, the other Herb Chambers.

DXK
01-02-2011, 01:50 PM
With regard to 3) I thought it was the xi was higher?
With regard to 6) Read the many thread debates on the forum. Has this been conclusive via track test times?
With regard to 7) If RWD is optioned with IAS, it is close in price to AWD.

Thanx. for the feedback.

Yes, in item 3 I meant the other way around
6)No test track, just reference from different cars with the same weight difference. There is also something else involved in AWD that retards accelecration, but is neglegible. P cars are much better at it that BMW, not enough experience
7) Well, that's the 'If' and you get something extra besides 'feel'

grover432
01-02-2011, 02:42 PM
Normal, sport refers to dynamic drive. Please make sure you understand the concept before you make your purchase.
In regards to steering, the hydraulic steering in xi is mechanical, but electric steering can be upgraded by software alone.

Are you sure about this? the specifications page on the BMW Canada site and the brochures say EPS for all models. I drove a 535 X Drive and found the same vagueness in the "on center" position.

dunderhi
01-02-2011, 02:58 PM
Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
1) On the ice / snow, other than uphill and from the start, RWD with snow tires will outperform AWD with all seasons, but not AWD with snows.
2) AWD come with all-seasons tires. However, the performance tires on RWD are not the untra high performance type that you get with M5 or E60 sport.
3) AWD is higher off the ground.
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.
5) If you drive with all-season tires all winter, your tires will need replacement sooner than if you have dedicated winters.
6) RWD is faster from the rolling start and faster as the speeds increase, AWD is faster from the start to about 60mph.
7) AWD is more expensive.
8) AWD is heavier.

Let's see if I understand the differences between the 550i and 550i xDrive by rephrasing.
1) On the ice / snow, other than when already moving on flat terrain, AWD with all seasons will outperform RWD with snow tires. AWD with snows is the ideal winter solution.
2) RWD sport package F10's come with summer tires. Driving in the snow will require the purchase of a second set of wheels, negating any cost savings of the RWD.
3) RWD and AWD F10's have identical heights as published by BMW.
4) Most of the professional car reviewers have complained about the RWD's lack of steering feel with the electric steering, but BMW might create a software fix someday.
5) If you drive any car you will wear out your tires. If you have two sets of tires your replacement costs may be much higher.
6) AWD is faster 0-60 as measured by BMW. The rest is just speculation.
7) AWD costs about the same as RWD plus a set of winter wheels. AWD is cheaper, if you get OEM M Sport wheels for your winter set.
8) AWD is heavier, thus helping the snow traction.

DXK
01-02-2011, 03:08 PM
As far as I know EPS is not used on X drive cars at all. That does not mean though that non EPS F10 are necessary better.

richschneid
01-02-2011, 03:18 PM
[QUOTE=DXK;5737560]Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.

The steering on the xDrive version is absolutely, definitively adjustable. It varies with the DHP setting and is definitively speed sensitive.

The absolute best combination for snow driving is AWD and dedicated snow tires. I had Wintersport M3s on my RWD 650i and they were good, but there is no comparison whatsoever to xDrive with performance snow tires. But I would not drive in the winter on non run flat tires. I would never want to have to change a tire in a blizzard. The RFT Bridgestone Blizzak LM-25s are a little better in snow than the Dunlop Wintersport M3s. I switch to the Bridgestone because I wanted RFTs in the winter and the snow and ice traction is a little better. The Blizzaks handle and ride very well. I may use Potenzas in the summer instead of the standard grand touring all seasons that were OE, but the OEs are pretty good in good weather.

All in all the 550i xDrive is a much better car in almost every way compared to my E39 M5. But the E39 M5 was more "sporting", even though it was slower and didn't handle as well.

DXK
01-02-2011, 03:29 PM
Let's see if I understand the differences between the 550i and 550i xDrive by rephrasing.
1) On the ice / snow, other than when already moving on flat terrain, AWD with all seasons will outperform RWD with snow tires. AWD with snows is the ideal winter solution.
2) RWD sport package F10's come with summer tires. Driving in the snow will require the purchase of a second set of wheels, negating any cost savings of the RWD.
3) RWD and AWD F10's have identical heights as published by BMW.
4) Most of the professional car reviewers have complained about the RWD's lack of steering feel with the electric steering, but BMW might create a software fix someday.
5) If you drive any car you will wear out your tires. If you have two sets of tires your replacement costs may be much higher.
6) AWD is faster 0-60 as measured by BMW. The rest is just speculation.
7) AWD costs about the same as RWD plus a set of winter wheels. AWD is cheaper, if you get OEM M Sport wheels for your winter set.
8) AWD is heavier, thus helping the snow traction.
You can believe what you said and are free to make your purchase decision based on that.
For the benefit of others:
1) AWD with all-seasons will achieve the speed of 5mph from stop FASTER than RWD with snows, but its handling will be inferior at any speed, especially past that. If you want you can search Car&Driver for RWD vs AWD.
2 and 5 Wheels / tires are damaged in winter, thus one buys cheaper alternative. If you keep your OEM wheels and tires all the time, if will be more expensive in the long run.
4) I have no idea, I am just saying it is possible. Also, I have not seen a review where they recommended the x drive based on steering.
7) OEM sport wheels are $480 or so a piece. Anyway you need to believe that item 1 is true.
8) I was not aware that extra weight in cars is a good thing, thanks.
6) No, it's not speculation.
3) Please point me to the source, as it contradicts everything I've known.

DXK
01-02-2011, 04:12 PM
[QUOTE=DXK;5737560]Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.

The steering on the xDrive version is absolutely, definitively adjustable. It varies with the DHP setting and is definitively speed sensitive.


The absolute best combination for snow driving is AWD and dedicated snow tires.
The software flash, Rich. :) BMW can update steering software, there is some speculation that they already have, but I have no idea.


Sure, btw how are those Chinese wheels working out for you?
sorry, couldn't resist.

cmorv
01-02-2011, 04:19 PM
Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
1) On the ice / snow, other than uphill and from the start, RWD with snow tires will outperform AWD with all seasons, but not AWD with snows.
2) AWD only comes with all-seasons tires. However, the performance tires on RWD are not the untra high performance type that you get with M5 or E60 sport.
3) AWD is higher off the ground.
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.
5) If you drive with all-season tires all winter, your tires will need replacement sooner than if you have dedicated winters.
6) RWD is faster from the rolling start and faster as the speeds increase, AWD is faster from the start to about 60mph.
7) AWD is more expensive.
8) AWD is heavier.

This is complete nonsense, only points here that I agree with are , 2),7), and 8). The rest are simply not true.

DXK
01-02-2011, 04:26 PM
This is complete nonsense, only points here that I agree with are , 2),7), and 8). The rest are simply not true.

I didn't think you would. :) You still think Sport Auto only adds paddle shifters, correct?

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 04:49 PM
You can believe what you said and are free to make your purchase decision based on that.
For the benefit of others:
1) AWD with all-seasons will achieve the speed of 5mph from stop FASTER than RWD with snows, but its handling will be inferior at any speed, especially past that. If you want you can search Car&Driver for RWD vs AWD.
2 and 5 Wheels / tires are damaged in winter, thus one buys cheaper alternative. If you keep your OEM wheels and tires all the time, if will be more expensive in the long run.
4) I have no idea, I am just saying it is possible. Also, I have not seen a review where they recommended the x drive based on steering.
7) OEM sport wheels are $480 or so a piece. Anyway you need to believe that item 1 is true.
8) I was not aware that extra weight in cars is a good thing, thanks.
6) No, it's not speculation.
3) Please point me to the source, as it contradicts everything I've known.


Is the the Car and Driver article you are referring to?
http://www.caranddriver.com/features/archive/winter-traction_test_what_price_traction_-feature/the_bottom_line_page_3

If so, it's pretty hopeless where I live, in a hilly region with heavy snow and ice, that changes often and then is sometimes dry (this describes last few weeks). Need two cars.

DXK
01-02-2011, 04:55 PM
Yes it's a good read. But for you, like you said, and as mentioned in item 1, you need AWD with snow tires for best results.

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 05:02 PM
Yes it's a good read. But for you, like you said, and as mentioned in item 1, you need AWD with snow tires for best results.

Based on C & D article, yes, except when it happens to dry out. Thanks for the article tip.

DXK
01-02-2011, 05:35 PM
By the way, since this particular article was published, there appeared a new kind of winter performance tires, which do not degrade the performance on the dry surface as much and their speed rating is up to 149mph. They are available for F10 made by Dunlop or Pirelli

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 05:46 PM
By the way, since this particular article was published, there appeared a new kind of winter performance tires, which do not degrade the performance on the dry surface as much and their speed rating is up to 149mph. They are available for F10 made by Dunlop or Pirelli

I am looking at April Ed, so I have sometime to check them out. Thanx.

bmwarchitect
01-02-2011, 05:57 PM
I too live in New York. I have had all wheel drive cars since trading in my A4. I find them to be much much better in snow and they are worth the extra money. What part of New York do you live in by the way?

Central New York. Lake Effect snow country, but good white wines.

dunderhi
01-02-2011, 08:04 PM
You can believe what you said and are free to make your purchase decision based on that.
For the benefit of others:
1) AWD with all-seasons will achieve the speed of 5mph from stop FASTER than RWD with snows, but its handling will be inferior at any speed, especially past that. If you want you can search Car&Driver for RWD vs AWD.
2 and 5 Wheels / tires are damaged in winter, thus one buys cheaper alternative. If you keep your OEM wheels and tires all the time, if will be more expensive in the long run.
4) I have no idea, I am just saying it is possible. Also, I have not seen a review where they recommended the x drive based on steering.
7) OEM sport wheels are $480 or so a piece. Anyway you need to believe that item 1 is true.
8) I was not aware that extra weight in cars is a good thing, thanks.
6) No, it's not speculation.
3) Please point me to the source, as it contradicts everything I've known.

For the express benefit of others, I had made statements that I understand to be true and restated some of your statements with an opposing bias. Think of it as saying half-full, vice half-empty. Here are further clarifications:
1) From your C&D article, the RWD car with the studless ice and snow tire is inferior in acceleration, stopping, and handling when the road isn't covered with snow & ice. The snow superiority of the RWD in this article was based solely on this type of tire, so snow performance of high performance snow tires cannot be claimed using this article. The new high performance snows are a compromise tire, just like high performance all seasons. TireRack testing has shown they do not perform as well in the snow as studless ice and snow tires. I have used high performance snow tires since 2007, and in RWD cars I need to spin them to get up my snow covered driveway. Sipes can only do so much when fighting gravity.
2) Why cheap-out in the winter? A high quality wheel wouldn't suffer any more environmental damage than the finish on the car itself. Maybe people should consider driving a cheap Honda if they are concerned about the winter damage.
3) Links provided.
BMW 550i xDrive Sedan Specifications (http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Content/Vehicles/2011/5/550ixDriveSedan/Features_and_Specs/550ixDriveSedanSpecifications.aspx)
BMW 550i Sedan Specifications (http://www.bmwusa.com/Standard/Content/Vehicles/2011/5/550iSedan/Features_and_Specs/550iSedanSpecifications.aspx)
4) No, they haven't recommended the xDrive based on steering alone, they just complained about the 2WD 550i's lack of steering feel.
Car and Driver: "The steering in the 550i is by far its greatest downfall"
5) You still need to maintain/replace two sets of tires.
6) Please point me to the source, as I can't find the test data anywhere. BTW are we talking about dry, wet, or snow here?
7) Sport Wheels: 4 X $480 + tires + TPMS + mounting/shipping > $2,300.
7a) M Sport Wheels: 4 X $980 + tires + TPMS + mounting/shipping >> $2,300.
8) More weight equals more traction. Winter tires normally have a decreased width to maximize the downward force to facilitate better cutting through the snow. That's also why people with RWD cars put extra weight in their trunk during the winter.

I've owned both RWD and AWD cars over the past 25 years, and I understand the benefits and limitations of each. Sorry, but an AWD with the right A/S tires does work quite well in the winter. Anyway, my current AWD car needs replacing and I am buying another AWD. I live in hilly terrain, and I need one car that will dependably get me where I need to go when the weather is bad. Now I would hate to scare anyone here, but I'm thinking about using the stock M Sport wheels as my winter wheels with performance snow tires, since I have my eye on a set of BBS wheels. This will be the first time I put a snow tire on an AWD car, so I will see if it lives up to the standard set by my A6 Quartto with all seasons. That car could go almost anywhere!

DXK
01-02-2011, 08:45 PM
1) I have not; the article's conclusion is what it is. The reference to performance tires was an addiotional point of consideration.
2) One can spend as much as one wants. Mine cost $2500 The point is if you need to make seasonal changes, why pay more for x if you live where the roads are not all that bad?
3) Have you looked at the distance between wheels and body yourself?
4) Right. But not reviews. The one in German mag Build, picked it against Jag, S6, and MB 500. Lets see what they say about x
6) Will later
7) OK
8) sure helps in winter, but at other times?

What is the question then? If one lives in So Cal, does one get AWD? Probably not. In Upstate NY - Probably yes.
In Boston, no uphill driveway? 5-10 bad driving days? 365 days all-seasons or 230 days summers and the rest high performance winters? Or have 2 sets for x-drive like Rich and others. Those are the choices

dunderhi
01-02-2011, 10:22 PM
1) I have not; the article's conclusion is what it is. The reference to performance tires was an addiotional point of consideration.
2) One can spend as much as one wants. Mine cost $2500 The point is if you need to make seasonal changes, why pay more for x if you live where the roads are not all that bad?
3) Have you looked at the distance between wheels and body yourself?
4) Right. But not reviews. The one in German mag Build, picked it against Jag, S6, and MB 500. Lets see what they say about x
6) Will later
7) OK
8) sure helps in winter, but at other times?

What is the question then? If one lives in So Cal, does one get AWD? Probably not. In Upstate NY - Probably yes.
In Boston, no uphill driveway? 5-10 bad driving days? 365 days all-seasons or 230 days summers and the rest high performance winters? Or have 2 sets for x-drive like Rich and others. Those are the choices

It looks like we are getting closer to saying the same things, we are just approaching the issue from different perspectives. I fully agree with your summation, and that's why I initially chimed in; it all depends on your situation. My situation is very different than yours.

I'm a little disappointed in your reply on number 3. You asked for the source, and I provided "the" authoritative source. And yes, I have looked at both cars and haven't seen any difference between the two, and I can't measure it any more precisely than BMW. On BMW's international website, they have the measurements in millimeters and they are identical. Can you see or measure a difference?

I must say though, the actual test data for number 6 will be interesting, at least for curiousity sake. The stock test data won't really matter for me since the xDrive is already a done deal, and I will be going with Dinan, lighter wheels/tires, and maybe a more aggresive exhaust set up.

richschneid
01-03-2011, 02:31 AM
[QUOTE=richschneid;5737950]
The software flash, Rich. :) BMW can update steering software, there is some speculation that they already have, but I have no idea.


Sure, btw how are those Chinese wheels working out for you?
sorry, couldn't resist.

Every time I look at them and know they only cost $150 each I feel very smart. They look great, black with dark blue and beige interior and anthracite headliner. Get a lot of complements on the wheels. Have no problems with any aspect of functionality. And since they were so inexpensive I bought five wheels in case one is damaged.

Ran into a snow squall on the Route 30 in Indiana last week. Cars slippin' and sliddin'. The most important thing about dedicated snow tires is the stopping and turning ability compared to all seasons. Was able to maneuver safely around some spun out stopped cars in the middle of the highway. Will never drive in winter without dedicated winter tires.

Emilner
01-03-2011, 07:23 AM
Those who are deciding between RWD and AWD, here are few things to know:
1) On the ice / snow, other than uphill and from the start, RWD with snow tires will outperform AWD with all seasons, but not AWD with snows.
2) AWD only comes with all-seasons tires. However, the performance tires on RWD are not the untra high performance type that you get with M5 or E60 sport.
3) AWD is higher off the ground.
4) Whatever steering one prefers now, keep in mind that RWD electric steering is software adjustable, the AWD steering is not.
5) If you drive with all-season tires all winter, your tires will need replacement sooner than if you have dedicated winters.
6) RWD is faster from the rolling start and faster as the speeds increase, AWD is faster from the start to about 60mph.
7) AWD is more expensive.
8) AWD is heavier.

As your comments have been discussed back and forth I will bypass these and point out one major difference. There is a major difference driving the two cars in the rain. The ix is an absolute pleasure to drive in the rain with no wheel slippage in corners or off the line. After driving two E550 RWD cars for a few years I will tell you I will never go back to RWD for a vehicle driven in the rain. You can drive an AWD car 9/10ths of what you can in the dry (not saying you should) which makes for a much safer and rewarding driving experience.

In the snow my 550ix on stock a/s tires is a pleasure to drive. Yes, you have to watch your stopping distances and turns, but hey if you have been driving for a number of years that is engrained in your driving style. The major difference is off the line where my E550's, even with snows, would sit and spin. You would have to be careful not to hit the car or whatever next to you because if it was icy the car would want to sidestep. Not in the ix, hit the gas and go...

tdepetra
01-03-2011, 07:35 AM
As your comments have been discussed back and forth I will bypass these and point out one major difference. There is a major difference driving the two cars in the rain. The ix is an absolute pleasure to drive in the rain with no wheel slippage in corners or off the line. After driving two E550 RWD cars for a few years I will tell you I will never go back to RWD for a vehicle driven in the rain. You can drive an AWD car 9/10ths of what you can in the dry (not saying you should) which makes for a much safer and rewarding driving experience.

In the snow my 550ix on stock a/s tires is a pleasure to drive. Yes, you have to watch your stopping distances and turns, but hey if you have been driving for a number of years that is engrained in your driving style. The major difference is off the line where my E550's, even with snows, would sit and spin. You would have to be careful not to hit the car or whatever next to you because if it was icy the car would want to sidestep. Not in the ix, hit the gas and go...

Ditto. This is all so subjective to what every individual driver experiences, values, and is willing to pay for. Some of us even go the next step with our X-drives by adding dedicated winter wheels and rubber. But not all weather conditions, wallets, or personal preferences are equal. That said, the X-drive beats any AWD system I've experienced -- American, German, or Japanese.

DXK
01-03-2011, 09:38 AM
The ix is an absolute pleasure to drive in the rain with no wheel slippage in corners or off the line.[/B] After driving two E550 RWD cars for a few years I will tell you I will never go back to RWD for a vehicle driven in the rain. You can drive an AWD car 9/10ths of what you can in the dry (not saying you should) which makes for a much safer and rewarding driving experience.

In the snow my 550ix on stock a/s tires is a pleasure to drive. Yes, you have to watch your stopping distances and turns, but hey if you have been driving for a number of years that is engrained in your driving style. The major difference is off the line where my E550's, even with snows, would sit and spin. You would have to be careful not to hit the car or whatever next to you because if it was icy the car would want to sidestep. Not in the ix, hit the gas and go...

The rain part is true and is important, especially if RWD has ultra high performance tires.

vortexx
01-03-2011, 10:51 AM
I'm a little disappointed in your reply on number 3. You asked for the source, and I provided "the" authoritative source. And yes, I have looked at both cars and haven't seen any difference between the two, and I can't measure it any more precisely than BMW. On BMW's international website, they have the measurements in millimeters and they are identical. Can you see or measure a difference?

The xi and i variants of the F10 ride at the same height, and have exactly the same wheel gap. Not only is that the specification, but I verified this with two cars sitting side by side on a dealer lot.

This was NOT the case with the E60, where the xi sat higher.

cmorv
01-03-2011, 11:25 AM
I didn't think you would. :) You still think Sport Auto only adds paddle shifters, correct?

I stand by my comments, for both threads, but will keep my post directed to the subject at hand. Your "facts" are pure speculation, but do make good conversation.

DXK
01-03-2011, 11:54 AM
Ok. as far as you're concerned your facts are facts and mine are speculation. Let's leave it at that.

highyo
01-03-2011, 12:16 PM
Ok. as far as you're concerned your facts are facts and mine are speculation. Let's leave it at that.

you guys have both made decisions based on what you believe are the facts. at the edges im sure there is a difference, but the engine and the tires are probably the most important considerations regardless. so who cares!