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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

View Poll Results: What percentage of time is your automatic in manual?
Never 3 17.65%
Less than 25% 10 58.82%
Around 50% 2 11.76%
More than 75% 2 11.76%
Voters: 17. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 05-07-2011, 09:07 PM
bimmernut1 bimmernut1 is offline
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Driving my Automatic as a Standard

I find myself driving my automatic more in the manual shift mode than in automatic. I thought I'd create a poll to find how you automatic owners drive.

I find there are several situations where the X3 is just in the wrong gear; at least not the optimal gear. To get it to change, I have to press the accelerator a considerable amount for it to kickdown, then the revs are too high. In manual mode, I can get it to a lower gear and the revs are perfect as well since I can control the revs with the accelerator pedal and the gear with the shifter. The functions are independent.

In particular, going up hill at a steady rate and I want to briskly accelerate, the X3 doesn't change gear unless I press the accelerator hard, then it sounds like I'm trying to race. Another situation where I find the X3 in the wrong gear is when slowing down then needing to speed up quickly, it doesn't drop down a gear. Not to say it moves away slowly, not just as briskly as if it was one gear lower.

Consequently I think I spend well over 75% of the time in manual shift mode. Basically the only time I'm in auto is in bumper to bumper traffic and on long stretches on the highway. Maybe the fact that all my other cars are manual has something to do with this as well.
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  #2  
Old 05-07-2011, 09:28 PM
ProRail ProRail is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmernut1 View Post
I find myself driving my automatic more in the manual shift mode than in automatic. I thought I'd create a poll to find how you automatic owners drive.

I find there are several situations where the X3 is just in the wrong gear; at least not the optimal gear. To get it to change, I have to press the accelerator a considerable amount for it to kickdown, then the revs are too high. In manual mode, I can get it to a lower gear and the revs are perfect as well since I can control the revs with the accelerator pedal and the gear with the shifter. The functions are independent.

In particular, going up hill at a steady rate and I want to briskly accelerate, the X3 doesn't change gear unless I press the accelerator hard, then it sounds like I'm trying to race. Another situation where I find the X3 in the wrong gear is when slowing down then needing to speed up quickly, it doesn't drop down a gear. Not to say it moves away slowly, not just as briskly as if it was one gear lower.

Consequently I think I spend well over 75% of the time in manual shift mode. Basically the only time I'm in auto is in bumper to bumper traffic and on long stretches on the highway. Maybe the fact that all my other cars are manual has something to do with this as well.
I use the selector a lot, especially on downgrades.

Last edited by ProRail; 05-07-2011 at 09:29 PM. Reason: typo
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  #3  
Old 05-08-2011, 07:36 AM
vern vern is offline
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The gas mileage is bad enough without using the manual.
cheers
vern
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  #4  
Old 05-08-2011, 06:31 PM
Mr. J Mr. J is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vern View Post
The gas mileage is bad enough without using the manual.
cheers
vern
mine is better using the manual,,,
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  #5  
Old 05-08-2011, 06:57 PM
bimmernut1 bimmernut1 is offline
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Originally Posted by Mr. J View Post
mine is better using the manual,,,
Mine is a little better as well shifted manually. I know typically standard shift cars get better mileage than automatics, but I wasn't sure if this applied to automatics shifted manually. I reset my trip computer with every fill up and consistently get 18.5-19 mpg whether I leave it in auto or not; typically slightly better shifting.

I think the key is not to do jack rabbit starts and rev the engine up to 5k rpm regardless of the stick position. For best gas mileage in the standard mode, I think shifting a little less than 3k rpm is the secret.
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  #6  
Old 05-08-2011, 07:41 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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I live it in Drive and go. Works for me and my driving habits 90% of the time. The Sport mode (auto shifting) works for the other 9%. I use manual mode only on longer/steeper gradients for stronger engine braking.

Do you have the 5-speed or 6-speed automatic? I find the 5 speed plenty responsive, probably a bit more than necessary but that might just be because I have the 2,5 litre.
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  #7  
Old 05-08-2011, 08:40 PM
bimmernut1 bimmernut1 is offline
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Originally Posted by AzNMpower32 View Post
Do you have the 5-speed or 6-speed automatic? I find the 5 speed plenty responsive, probably a bit more than necessary but that might just be because I have the 2,5 litre.
I have the 5 speed. I wish I had a 6th gear.
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  #8  
Old 05-08-2011, 08:55 PM
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AzNMpower32 AzNMpower32 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bimmernut1 View Post
I have the 5 speed. I wish I had a 6th gear.
The 6th gear doesn't lower highway revs. It just fills in the huge gap between 4th and 5th.

Do a search, try resetting the Adaptation values. I think it's something like, turn the electronics on but dont start the car, hold the throttle to kickdown for 20 seconds, then start the car.
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  #9  
Old 05-08-2011, 10:03 PM
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madurodave madurodave is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vern View Post
The gas mileage is bad enough without using the manual.
cheers
vern
I'm still getting 23 to 24 mpg. Not too bad.
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  #10  
Old 05-09-2011, 10:02 AM
bimmernut1 bimmernut1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzNMpower32 View Post
The 6th gear doesn't lower highway revs. It just fills in the huge gap between 4th and 5th.

Do a search, try resetting the Adaptation values. I think it's something like, turn the electronics on but dont start the car, hold the throttle to kickdown for 20 seconds, then start the car.
Thanks. I'll search adaptation values.
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