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-   -   Tow Hitch (http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=664018)

Mntbimmer 12-14-2012 07:43 AM

Tow Hitch
 
[FHi all
We are leasing a X3, the car is currently at the factory and will be coming home to us at the end of the year. My question, we would like to put a tow hitch on the car, but obviously can't trash the bumper to do so since this is a leased vehicle. The tech at U-Haul said installing one of their tow hitches on a newer X3 is no problem and won't do any damage to the car. However, the dealer seems to be weary about the U-Haul installation and said we should think twice before going U-Haul vs BMW do the install. Thing is, a U-Haul installation is about $300, BMW is around $1800.
Does anyone have insight on the U-Haul tow installation?

Many thanks in advance,
kelli
ONT="Palatino Linotype"][/FONT]

scubapup 12-14-2012 06:28 PM

I think a search will help here

Have read posts where dealer sets some programming for the BMW tow hitch

scubapup 12-14-2012 06:32 PM

This one is from another forum though

http://x3.xbimmers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=674368

Mntbimmer 12-14-2012 06:50 PM

Thanks much for forwarding the thread, it was full of useful info.


colson79 12-15-2012 09:13 AM

I'd shop around at all the BMW dealers in you area because $1,800 seems really high. I paid $1,100 for my hitch and installation at my local dealer. There is a lot more to the BMW hitch than the hitch itself. There is a bunch of reprogramming done to the vehicle. It will automatically disable the rear backup sensors when you connect a trailer, it add's a zoom on hitch function to the backup camera (which makes backing and hooking up the trailer super easy), and it alters the stability control behavior to accommodate for towing when you connect a trailer (which is a safety issue). Plus it is a hidden design so you don't really see the hitch when you aren't using it.

Doug in NC 12-16-2012 07:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by colson79 (Post 7251485)
I'd shop around at all the BMW dealers in you area because $1,800 seems really high. I paid $1,100 for my hitch and installation at my local dealer. There is a lot more to the BMW hitch than the hitch itself. There is a bunch of reprogramming done to the vehicle. It will automatically disable the rear backup sensors when you connect a trailer, it add's a zoom on hitch function to the backup camera (which makes backing and hooking up the trailer super easy), and it alters the stability control behavior to accommodate for towing when you connect a trailer (which is a safety issue). Plus it is a hidden design so you don't really see the hitch when you aren't using it.

I agree, I had mine installed by BMW for <$1,000. A bunch of plastic has to be removed to install the hitch. I didn't trust U-Haul to do it. I couldn't find a plug in wiring harness so again, I wanted to leave this to BMW so that the warranty wasn't jeopardized. The receiver removes when you are not using the hitch so the visual impact of the hitch is minimal, the best I've seen on any competing vehicle. As stated above, the sensors and backup camera is reprogramed. To me, having BMW do it for $1,000 was worth the peace of mind. A hard pill to swallow when I installed my own class III hitch on my Ford truck for <$200.

Mntbimmer 12-16-2012 08:04 PM

Much appreciation for all of your information. Since this is a lease vehicle, I do not want to do any damage to the bumper. My husband thinks cutting a bit of the bumper to install the U-Haul hitch won't come back to haunt us when we turn in the car, but I have a feeling the BMW powers that be will ding us significantly. There is also the warranty issue...

invisihitch 01-13-2013 11:02 AM

Tow Hitch
 
5 Attachment(s)
If you absolutely do not want to cut anything on the vehicle, or if you want the benefit of using the OEM wiring harness, then the invisihitch is a good match. Full disclosure: I work for the company. The invisihitch is a re-branded execuhitch product, released as an "aftermarket" hitch for the North American version of the X3. In other parts of the world, it is the factory X3 hitch. It's a full class III hitch, and because it is the factory hitch elsewhere, it is available with the OEM wiring harness. Reprogramming the vehicle provides all the benefits listed by others (zoom mode on the backup camera, auto disabling of rear PDC sensors, dynamic trailer stability control). Plus, there is no cutting of anything required.

A clarification on 'No Cutting Required': Many people choose to trim a 4-inch wide notch in the plastic gravel guard underneath... enough to allow a ball mount or a bike-rack connector to be inserted upward into the invisihitch receiver with ease. But on the X3, the last 4 inches of the gravel guard is a separate, removable piece. So instead of notching it, you can remove it and save it. Then, when you want to return your X3 to its original factory condition, just screw the plastic underpanel piece back on.

Here are some photos. The gravel guard shown in one of the photos is a panel that was removed from the underside of the X3. It is not a structural piece by any means; it's just a gravel guard that can be removed/replaced easily with seven screws. You can see in the photo where we have drawn with red marker on this piece, showing where you would cut an opening if you prefer to cut-and-replace the gravel guard, rather than remove-and-save it for later. Either way, you get a very clean look with no evidence that the vehicle even has a hitch installed. And with the OEM harness, you get a premium tow hitch solution for the X3 that fully protects your warranty.

Cheers,
Daryl
daryl@invisihitch.com
678.400.0121 office
404.593.9887 mobile

deedward 01-14-2013 08:20 PM

I just installed (myself) the BMW hitch on my 2012 X3 M Sport.

The Invisihitch looks really nice too. I would not, however, leave the gravel guard off because it attaches to the bumper cover and it looks to me like it adds some strength and integrity to the lower edge of the cover.

I cut out a section of the gravel guard for the BMW hitch and this could be done for the Invisihitch also.

When it comes time to return your leased X3 you could simply take either hitch off and put the "cut" gravel guard back on since you can't see that it's been cut unless you get on the ground and look up, or just buy a new gravel guard from BMW and put that on. They can't be that expensive. Certainly a lot less than a new bumper cover.

Just my 2 cents worth!

Dan


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