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X3 F25 (2011 - current)
The latest X3 brings some added style and some new features to the BMW SUV family. Talk about the new F25 now!

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  #1  
Old 08-28-2011, 05:18 PM
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Palantirion Palantirion is offline
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New X3 owner...

Our new X3 has arrived, in an unprecedented 3w1d since ordering. Overall it's very nice. The RFTs ride poorly and tramline irritatingly on concrete freeways, and the steering is as "70's Lincoln" as I remember from the test drive. But the chassis and drivetrain are superb, and the newest version of iDrive is excellent. Our combination is Alpine White with Nevada Chestnut leather and Fineline Wave Wood trim. M Sport, premium, etc. etc. Pics to follow as soon as I can FTP again (Godaddy reset my password without telling me).
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  #2  
Old 08-28-2011, 05:31 PM
Zeke77 Zeke77 is offline
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Dump those RFTs. Seriously. For four years, I drove on the OEM RFTs on my 650. I had heard the bad ride reviews, but I almost didn't switch when the time came to replace the tires--I just thought "BMW must have put these on for a reason." Just about everyone on the 650 board told me I would be crazy not to switch off the RFTs, so I gave Michelin Pilot Sports a try. Wow, what a difference--both in road noise and fuel economy (both improved tremendously)

If I could do it over again, I'd take the RFTs off as soon as I got the new car home, store them for resale (if anybody should want a completely "stock" version of the car) and put on a nice set of non-RFTs.
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  #3  
Old 08-28-2011, 05:50 PM
michael T michael T is offline
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Hi Zeke77,
When you switched to the Michelin Pilot tires, were you able to use the same wheels? Also, what did you do if you had a flat tire? TIA
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2011, 03:56 AM
GingerJay GingerJay is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Palantirion View Post
Our new X3 has arrived, in an unprecedented 3w1d since ordering. Overall it's very nice. The RFTs ride poorly and tramline irritatingly on concrete freeways, and the steering is as "70's Lincoln" as I remember from the test drive. But the chassis and drivetrain are superb, and the newest version of iDrive is excellent. Our combination is Alpine White with Nevada Chestnut leather and Fineline Wave Wood trim. M Sport, premium, etc. etc. Pics to follow as soon as I can FTP again (Godaddy reset my password without telling me).
Yes, please post pictures of exterior and interior. Almost the exact same setup I want to order. Thanks!
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  #5  
Old 08-30-2011, 02:55 PM
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Palantirion Palantirion is offline
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So after a few days of driving I have more feedback about the X3. First, the stock RFTs are a crap choice for this car. I've aired them down to 36psi (from the factory's 40psi), but they still ride roughly and tramline a lot. They do nothing positive for the car dynamically, and I can't wait to ditch them.

The trunk has a TON of small, large and thoughtful storage areas and methods. The center console will hold a lot, but the lack of a "small storage" area in the front makes it difficult to store small items like chapstick, eye drops, etc. They get lost in one large open area. Not to mention that the things you want within easy reach are often things you do NOT want in the same area as electronic! But that's where the Aux Input is located, so you have no choice. It would be better for us if the Aux was located under the dash center like it is on the E85/6 Z4. Then we could locate our iPod or phone (for mp3s) in a more ergonomic location.

The sport seats are very comfortable, for my 270lb frame and my much smaller wife. We haven't done a long distance drive in the car yet, but I believe the tunnel shape/location will not be irritating to my right knee/leg when driving.

The panoramic sunroof adds a lot of weight, but is awfully cool and works well.

Unlike my last new BMW (E86 MC), the X3's owners manual packet fits in several different places inside the vehicle.

The backup camera system works very well, but I still prefer to have more awareness by scanning around the vehicle manually. Sightlines are good. The backup camera is most useful when backing out of a friend's curving driveway.

The latest version of iDrive is complex due to the total of functions contained within, but is about as ergonomic as any system can get. The rest of the controls are well thought out too. I do wish there was an "on" light for the stereo, because it is occasionally confusing at-a-glance to figure out if it's on or simply set to an optional input channel.

I've had the chance to push the X3 hard in a variety of turns and while the "Normal" mode is OK the "Sport+" sharpens everything! The transmission holds gears longer and shifts more quickly. The throttle mapping is more aggressive but not too touchy. The dynamic torque vectoring is awesome! Twice I've had the opportunity to drive hard in 270 degree onramps - both with and without passengers. While understeer is easily reachable with excessive entry speed the X3 rotates beautifully off-throttle. It's a very easy car to throttle steer. The driving balance is clearly RWD with mild assistance from the front tires when appropriate.

And now pics...
Exterior








Engine






Interior








Trunk














And now let's discuss mod #1...
I have a set of perfectly good RG-Rs that I used on my Z4 M Coupe. Recently I found a set of Apex wheels that fit the M Coupe (and it's StopTech BBK) better than the RG-Rs. I was curious to see if the RG-Rs would fit the X3...and they DO. They are 18x8.5 and 18x10, which match the optional OEM summer wheel/tire width for the X3. Finding good tires that come in the right sizes to match the OD of the stock 19s was a trick, but the Continental ContiSportContact 3 seems suitable. My wife was on the fence about changing anything but two points convinced her very quickly:
1) We will keep the stock wheels and tires, so reverting to stock would be easy.
2) EACH stock wheel/tire combo weighs 73lbs! So swapping to RG-Rs and CSC3s would reduce rotational unsprung weight by 86lbs! If we went with Pirelli's PZero Rosso the X3 would shed an additional 10lbs.

Here is a very quick-and-dirty PShop of the X3 comparing RG-Rs and stock 19s:
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  #6  
Old 08-30-2011, 03:21 PM
No12 No12 is offline
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As to your post of air pressure, the door sticker says F-32, R-38. Myself, I am running F-32 and R-35 and I find it good. Not harsh and little/no tramlining. I am assuming these are the Goodyear LS all-seasons (agreed, not the best tire).
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  #7  
Old 08-30-2011, 03:27 PM
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Palantirion Palantirion is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by No12 View Post
As to your post of air pressure, the door sticker says F-32, R-38. Myself, I am running F-32 and R-35 and I find it good. Not harsh and little/no tramlining. I am assuming these are the Goodyear LS all-seasons (agreed, not the best tire).
-Perhaps mine were overfilled at the dealer? I suspect your lack of tramlining is due to having fewer sections of CA-style concrete freeway surface.
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  #8  
Old 08-30-2011, 04:33 PM
No12 No12 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Palantirion View Post
-Perhaps mine were overfilled at the dealer? I suspect your lack of tramlining is due to having fewer sections of CA-style concrete freeway surface.
Dealers often over fill the tires. Don't follow the logic of it, though.

And true, we have little concrete road surfaces up here, mostly asphalt paving. Much nicer and quieter than concrete. I hate I5 south around Seattle (for example) for that very reason.
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2014 MINI Cooper S, Thunder Grey, 6MT
Gone: 2012 135i Coupe, Jet Black, MSport, 6MT
Gone: 2012 135i Coupe,LeMans Blue, MSport, DCT, Prem
Gone: 2011 X35i, Vermillion Red, MSport.
Gone: 2007 328xiTouring, Barbera Red, Lemon, 6MT.
Gone: 2009 M3 Sedan, Alpine White, Black Novillo, M-DCT.
Gone: 2008 535xi, Alpine White, Black Dakota, MSport.
Long Gone: 11 other BMWs between 1971 and 1986.
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  #9  
Old 08-30-2011, 04:56 PM
Zeke77 Zeke77 is offline
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Originally Posted by michael T View Post
Hi Zeke77,
When you switched to the Michelin Pilot tires, were you able to use the same wheels? Also, what did you do if you had a flat tire? TIA
You can absolutely use the same rims. I have done so with my 650, and there is no reason why you can't do the same on the X3. Also, I have not yet had a flat tire since the switch...However, I carry a Slime kit in my trunk. I've used them before and they work well.

Also, be aware that you can still get a "flat" with RFTs. It's much harder to do, but it can happen. When I was in my dealership a couple years back, a 650 was being towed in after the right front tire hit some sort of industrial debris (concrete/rebar chunk, I think...) The whole sidewall of the tire was ripped. Of course, his rim was also trashed.

P.S. When I ordered my new tires from TireRack, a sales rep called me back to confirm the shipping address. As he was confirming the details, he said "It doesn't seem like anybody re-orders runflats. We used to make a point to double-confirm with customers to make sure they knew they were ordering non-RFTs when RFTs were standard with their vehicle, but now we make a point to confirm the other way around for the rare instance when somebody wants the exact same tires. We say, are you really sure you want to go with RFTs again?
"
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2004 X5 4.4i (retired)

Last edited by Zeke77; 08-30-2011 at 05:07 PM.
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  #10  
Old 08-30-2011, 05:58 PM
h0mersimps0n h0mersimps0n is offline
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Planatirion,

EDIT: Nevermind, I noticed the "performance control" is included in the m-sport package (for the torque vectoring, split-torque, etc) and the only difference if I added the DHP would be the variable steering which I don't care about at all.

Despite the fact that my order is submitted I'm still torn between the alpine white and Carbon Black Metallic- just gotta trust my choice and stick with the Carbon Black no matter how many beautiful Alpine photos are posted here between now and October.

Hope you love your machine - can't wait to take delivery on mine.

Last edited by h0mersimps0n; 08-30-2011 at 06:18 PM.
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  #11  
Old 08-30-2011, 07:35 PM
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Palantirion Palantirion is offline
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Originally Posted by h0mersimps0n View Post
Planatirion,

EDIT: Nevermind, I noticed the "performance control" is included in the m-sport package (for the torque vectoring, split-torque, etc) and the only difference if I added the DHP would be the variable steering which I don't care about at all.

Despite the fact that my order is submitted I'm still torn between the alpine white and Carbon Black Metallic- just gotta trust my choice and stick with the Carbon Black no matter how many beautiful Alpine photos are posted here between now and October.

Hope you love your machine - can't wait to take delivery on mine.
-Black should look very good with the non-M bumper trim. The flat black will contrast nicely with the gloss black paint
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  #12  
Old 08-30-2011, 11:03 PM
michael T michael T is offline
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Thanks Zeke77. have you ever used the Slime Kit or known of anyone who has? I remember when I was a kid ( a long time ago), the "tire repair" in a can was a novelty. The liquid didn't distribute properly causing a very unbalanced tire. Thanks again for the info.
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  #13  
Old 08-30-2011, 11:15 PM
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Originally Posted by michael T View Post
Thanks Zeke77. have you ever used the Slime Kit or known of anyone who has? I remember when I was a kid ( a long time ago), the "tire repair" in a can was a novelty. The liquid didn't distribute properly causing a very unbalanced tire. Thanks again for the info.
-I've used Dynaplug with good results. And all of our BMWs have an M Mobility Kit. I've used Slime-type products in the past with success. The key is driving the car soon and for sufficient distance that the material coats the inside of the tire evenly.
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  #14  
Old 08-31-2011, 02:39 AM
BruceOmega BruceOmega is online now
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Originally Posted by h0mersimps0n View Post
..... the only difference if I added the DHP would be the variable steering .....
DHP adds dynamic dampers. There have been several posts reporting the part number for replacement dampers for M-Sport vehicles without DHP is the same part number for the dampers in the base car.
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  #15  
Old 08-31-2011, 06:50 PM
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Got the X3's windows tinted today by TW Tint in Santa Ana. It's all Ceramic, with "clear" on the windshield, "light" on the front windows and moonroof panels, and "medium" on the rear windows and tailgate. This went on top of the mild factory tint. The temperature difference is very noticeable! I left the X3 outside for the afternoon on a 90+F day, with the moonroof shade open, and the car was only slightly warm inside at 6pm. TW did a great job, were prompt with their appointment scheduling, and did the whole job while I took a lunch break with my 3-year-old.

Before/After pics:




Outdoor shots:




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Old 09-01-2011, 01:40 PM
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johnbmw6 johnbmw6 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by No12 View Post
As to your post of air pressure, the door sticker says F-32, R-38. Myself, I am running F-32 and R-35 and I find it good. Not harsh and little/no tramlining. I am assuming these are the Goodyear LS all-seasons (agreed, not the best tire).
Goodyears are crap.You need Conti's or Michelin they drive much better.
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  #17  
Old 09-01-2011, 02:59 PM
No12 No12 is offline
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Originally Posted by johnbmw6 View Post
Goodyears are crap.You need Conti's or Michelin they drive much better.
Well, maybe so, but the Goodyears came with the car, and I am going to use them up before I replace with something better. I go to dedicated wheels/winter tires for about 4 months anyway.
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2014 MINI Cooper S, Thunder Grey, 6MT
Gone: 2012 135i Coupe, Jet Black, MSport, 6MT
Gone: 2012 135i Coupe,LeMans Blue, MSport, DCT, Prem
Gone: 2011 X35i, Vermillion Red, MSport.
Gone: 2007 328xiTouring, Barbera Red, Lemon, 6MT.
Gone: 2009 M3 Sedan, Alpine White, Black Novillo, M-DCT.
Gone: 2008 535xi, Alpine White, Black Dakota, MSport.
Long Gone: 11 other BMWs between 1971 and 1986.
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  #18  
Old 09-01-2011, 04:24 PM
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Palantirion Palantirion is offline
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Today I swapped the OEM RFTs for my Z4's RG-Rs and had new PZeros mounted on them. The car rides MUCH better, and doesn't pull to the right any more I guess the RFT's excessive tramlining makes it pull with the road crown much more than the PZeros (which hardly tramline at all)? Anyway, the car feels transformed, etc. etc. This is not news to anyone who has gone from RFTs to "good" tires. The RG-Rs are 18x8.5 and 18x10. Their offsets are stock E86 Z4M. I may add 15mm spacers to the fronts to bring them back to the X3's stock offset. Right now they are a bit more tucked into the fenders.

And I can't stress this point enough...switching from the BMW 19s and RFTs to RG-Rs and PZeros dropped 90.6lbs of rotational unsprung mass from the car!

Comparison of mounted tires, OEM and PZero:


On the lift at Supreme Power in Placentia, CA:


3 BMWs, 3 sets of BBS wheels (RS-GT, RG-R, RG-R):


More pics:














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Old 09-02-2011, 12:14 AM
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johnbmw6 johnbmw6 is offline
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Originally Posted by No12 View Post
Well, maybe so, but the Goodyears came with the car, and I am going to use them up before I replace with something better. I go to dedicated wheels/winter tires for about 4 months anyway.
My dedicated wheels and tyres will be ( On ~Order) Team Dynamics 1.3 Pro-Race alloys Black with Dunlop winter sport 100v XL 3D run-flats 245/45/18 8.5" all round.
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Old 09-02-2011, 12:16 AM
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johnbmw6 johnbmw6 is offline
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Originally Posted by Palantirion View Post
Today I swapped the OEM RFTs for my Z4's RG-Rs and had new PZeros mounted on them. The car rides MUCH better, and doesn't pull to the right any more I guess the RFT's excessive tramlining makes it pull with the road crown much more than the PZeros (which hardly tramline at all)? Anyway, the car feels transformed, etc. etc. This is not news to anyone who has gone from RFTs to "good" tires. The RG-Rs are 18x8.5 and 18x10. Their offsets are stock E86 Z4M. I may add 15mm spacers to the fronts to bring them back to the X3's stock offset. Right now they are a bit more tucked into the fenders.

And I can't stress this point enough...switching from the BMW 19s and RFTs to RG-Rs and PZeros dropped 90.6lbs of rotational unsprung mass from the car!

Comparison of mounted tires, OEM and PZero:


On the lift at Supreme Power in Placentia, CA:


3 BMWs, 3 sets of BBS wheels (RS-GT, RG-R, RG-R):


More pics:














Looks great
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Old 09-07-2011, 08:05 PM
BMW 3-SERIES BMW 3-SERIES is offline
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Got a little PShop bored.








X3 M Proto-Type

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