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Wildblue 12-31-2012 05:26 AM

More questions on dynamic driving/handling/whatever
I'm loving the 5-er GT, and really have a hankering to buy one for myself. If I did, I'd almost certainly do a special order, to get it just the way I want it--that's how I've bought my 3 other Bimmers so far.

The GT that my local dealer had, and I test drove, did not have any of the dynamic handling/driving/whatever options, and it drove wonderfully, so I'm surprised that it can get much better. But I've searched and read the reviews I've found here on those options, and do understand that you guys are seriously recommending them.

My question, though, comes because the details of these options are somewhat unclear and confusing. Current models allow you to add "Dynamic Damper Control" as a $1,000 stand-alone option, which "adjusts the dampening characteristics to suit the driving conditions and road quality." Then there's a $3,500 "Dynamic Handling Package" that includes the Dynamic Damper Control, and "Adaptive Ride". Some sources also say that this Dynamic Handling Package also includes "Active Roll Stabilization". To complicate things, in at least one place, I've also seen talking of "Dynamic Driving", and another ala carte item available is "Integral Active Steering" for $1,750.

So that's where it gets muddy, and it would help if any light could be shed on any of these features separately, to figure out what's what, and what the value added is. Those that have advocated for these options, are you talking about any one of them in particular? Would you say that the $1,000 DDC option is what's needed, or is it really worth the additional $2,500 to go for the whole package? I don't think I have the means to just add on every option, just because it's offered.

So what does each of those individual systems do by themselves? Are each of them worth it? Do you really need to get ALL of them?

Thanks in advance,

beevee 01-02-2013 03:02 PM

:eeps:I had the same issues in ordering our GT......we went with the 223 option which is the DDC. This gives you the different comfort levels for freeway driving and rough roads making the ride very comfortable when wanted. You can also put the car on Sport + which makes the car handle in corners like you would expect a BMW to handle. With DDC you get an extra comfort level which I can tell you is worth the money. The full ZDH package will give you an even tighter handling package for real M stlye sport handling on winding roads but if you are not looking for this feature it is not required to enjoy country roads and better than average speeds depending on your driving skills.....this car can hold the road just fine unless you want to shock other 535i drivers.....I do highly recommend the
ZMP package and the 456 Multi contour seats....:thumbup:

mpress 01-02-2013 05:54 PM

ok here goes, i will try and give you the essentials of each and the benefits.. i have driven gts with all or none of the options you question in both 335 and 550 engines... if you read any o f my posts you will fnd that i do seek the ultimate drive from my bmw and my opinion is likely to show through in this post...

DDC, gives you essentially ride only characteristic changes...from a soft and squishy ride in comfort to firmer suspension in sport...note ddc effects the suspension for the most part look at it as adjustable is not interactive with your driving...on comfort its soft all the time until you take it off of sport its stiffer all the time until you take it off..

DHP dynamic handling package, is far incorporates the concept of DDC but it is active (Adaptive Drive), the car adjusts to the road the stiffness or softness fluctuates with the road. DHP also includes ARS (active roll stabilization) utilizing stabilizers in the front and rear corners to work with the now adaptive shocks to stiffen or soften each corner of the car INDIVIDUALLY!!!! this greatly reduces body roll in the corners, nose diving when braking, rear squating on hard accelerations...and overall makes the car handle like a bmw should. it also incorporates a different shifting pattern to the engine in tune with everything else, definitely quicker as well..... there is no comparison in the handling of the car with DHP!

Lastly integral steering....a completely different issue...NOTE NOT AVAILABLE ON ALL WHEEL DRIVE!! it is pretty cool once you get used to it...however not nearly as important in my opinion as DHP... IAS at speeds below 30 mph, small turns of the wheel give you more turning the you would think...great when yo need to do a lot of manuvering at low speeds and above 30 the steering tightens up... BUT the big thing is the turning of the rear wheels.. at speeds below 30 the rear wheels turn in the opposite direction from the front wheels making u turns in far less space possible for example.....very very cool with such a big car as the gt. but even cooler is at speeds above 50 (i think its 50) the rear wheels turn in the same direction as the front wheels (only 2.5%) but it is very very 80 mph and above changing lanes feels like it is a horizontal move....IAS does also reduce body roll in turns or quick lane changes even more then DHP alone...

As i have said in a number of my early reviews as well as my 10K review... the GT deserves DHP and any one driving it with and then without will wish they had opted for it...

hope this helps... come join the club...still one o f my favorite cars i have owned....

Wildblue 01-03-2013 08:23 PM

Thanks, guys. That does indeed help clarify things. mpress, I had actually read your previous posts, and they were helpful too, but all this dynamic this or that is a bit confusing as to what each component is, and whether its worth the cost or not.

If I were to do this, I most likely would get the 535xi GT. For one, I live in Alaska. Took a 535xi GT out for a test drive, and was very, very impressed with the handling, traction, and performance. I'm pretty sold by you guys on doing the DDC, particularly since it's only $1k. I'm not sure, though, whether I'd be up for the additional $2,500 on top of the DDC cost, to get the entire DHP package.

I so want this car. I'm just hung up that my 2004 330i is still running strong, and I also love that car. It's got the special Performance Package with alcantara leather. It's getting older, and I'll need to replace it eventually. Mostly debating whether right now is the right time in personal finances and family planning.

jadnashuanh 01-03-2013 08:47 PM

If you do decide to order one, consider European is a neat opportunity to drive your car in the country of origin. They treat you quite well at the delivery center, and there is certainly lots of things to see in the area.

mpress 01-04-2013 06:33 AM

I totally understand your thoughts... i can say that i have a few friends that went down the same route, some opting to go smaller an d stay in a 3 series (as their only vehicle), they all now wish they had the handling and versatility of the GT, and two friends that opted to not get DHP, i can tell you the two of them regret it...not that they dont love their GT as is, in both cases the cars are leased and the small monthly increase detered them, until they compared their cars to ones with DHP.

My next door neighbor joined the club last month taking delivery of his GT 335ix with DHP and he loves it... the 335 engine kicks ass is plenty of power for just about any normal or abnormal driving situation... But it is the DHP that holds this car steady and level around turns or through evasive driving maneuvers.... there will never be a time that you ill say eh i didnt need to get the DHP, but there will certainly be times when you wish you did......often it will be as you recover from crazy turn to fast or a quick lane change because of the idiot that just cut you off, and right after you get your heart out of your groin, and you thank heavens you didnt **** in your pants you will sit back and say ....Damn that Mpress guy from bimmerfest just saved me a trip to the dry cleaners.....

what ever you do you will love the gt......


Fish23 01-04-2013 04:36 PM


Living in snowy Ottawa, Ontario I understand your preference for the x-drive version of the 535 GT. We just hsd three storms in 8 days snd I drove to Pennsylvania during one of them two days after Christmas. I too experienced the GT's excellent performance in adverse conditions. (I have Michelin Alpin winter tires). I travelled at the speed limit in the snow-covered left lane passing many cars and trucks going slower for whatever reason (timidity, summer tires, etc)

They must have thought I was crazy or driving a vehicle that could handle it. I hope they wondered whst I was driving. Never did I feel unsafe and my better half never asked me to slow down. If moved the wheel an inch either way I could 'feel' the road.

mpress, loved your post especially the material at the end. I laughed out loud but it is certainly spot-on.

mpress 01-04-2013 07:18 PM

fish...thanks..funny but true??

Fish23 01-04-2013 08:50 PM

You are welcome. Your description of the scenario (featuring twit drivers) in which the GT saves a pair if underwear was colorfully humorous. Well done.

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