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F10 / F11 (2011 - Current)
The new chapter in the highly successful story of the BMW 5 Series Sedan (F10) and wagon (F11)

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  #1  
Old 10-09-2010, 03:46 PM
sambb sambb is offline
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will BMW fix the steering?

I have owned a few 5s (540i, 530xi) and a 335i. I am strongly considering the f10, but after a few test drives in it, and its competition (mercedes, infiniti, audi), i am downright shocked at how un-BMW the steering is... I drove a 535i and the 550, and I am really a little turned off, almost lexus-like in its steering. At speed, the competitors are better, but that is an opinion.
Nevertheless....
I am sure that BMW does r&D and has done the market research, and this is where they want to go. I have no problem with that, but for the "enthusiast", does anyone think it will be changed back, rather than pander to the masses?

I understand that BMW has to market the car to a wide variety of tastes, and there are probably fewer enthusiasts than there are others who like the numb and dead feel, but is there any recourse for us... It is a tough issue to look at, because maybe the enthusiast is a different target than the masses, and a company probably needs to market to the masses.
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  #2  
Old 10-09-2010, 03:51 PM
jimefam jimefam is offline
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This exact thread has been posted about 30 times most with the same title just use the search button.
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  #3  
Old 10-09-2010, 03:59 PM
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A quick test drive may give you an impression of "too easy" effort at lower speeds. At speed, 50+ or so, it tightens up and effort is good, IMO. I've had my 535i for 3 weeks and the steering feels very natural now. And, I haven't experienced any on-center "vagueness" as some have reported. I owned an '05 330i and '08 335i previously.
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  #4  
Old 10-09-2010, 04:23 PM
abmwc abmwc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
A quick test drive may give you an impression of "too easy" effort at lower speeds. At speed, 50+ or so, it tightens up and effort is good, IMO. I've had my 535i for 3 weeks and the steering feels very natural now. And, I haven't experienced any on-center "vagueness" as some have reported. I owned an '05 330i and '08 335i previously.
So do you think it compares favorably with the 335i? Did you have the sport package?

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  #5  
Old 10-09-2010, 04:37 PM
tadtaggert tadtaggert is offline
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Originally Posted by abmwc View Post
So do you think it compares favorably with the 335i? Did you have the sport package?
I had an 07 335i with the sport package, and the steering in it was definitely stiffer, or more resistance when turning it. Feedback as different between the two cars, but after getting to know the F10 as good or better feedback.

No doubt they feel different tho.
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  #6  
Old 10-09-2010, 04:44 PM
abmwc abmwc is offline
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Originally Posted by tadtaggert View Post
I had an 07 335i with the sport package, and the steering in it was definitely stiffer, or more resistance when turning it. Feedback as different between the two cars, but after getting to know the F10 as good or better feedback.

No doubt they feel different tho.
Thanks for the feedback (he, he). I really love the steering on my 335i, my wife even likes it (and she is used to driving the Volvo). Thinking about the 535i or 550i now, but I am a bit concerned I will miss the 335i, especially the steering/responsiveness. I guess a test drive should help.

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  #7  
Old 10-09-2010, 05:06 PM
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Another pointless thread. The same usual suspects will chime in with the same anti- or pro-F10 comments.
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  #8  
Old 10-09-2010, 05:21 PM
tadtaggert tadtaggert is offline
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Another pointless thread. The same usual suspects will chime in with the same anti- or pro-F10 comments.
And the same pointless trolls
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  #9  
Old 10-09-2010, 05:24 PM
solstice solstice is offline
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If you don't like the steering feel now you will not like it later. Your description is how it feels and continous to feel for drivers like myself that think it lacks in feedback and resistance.
Will bmw fix it? Who knows, but if the new A6 will dominate the F10 in handling and fun to drive factor my guess is that the chances will go up considerably.
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  #10  
Old 10-09-2010, 05:25 PM
sambb sambb is offline
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I dont think the thread is worthless. There are several congratulatory and negative threads in forums. Several car enthusiast magazines have commented on the steering, and no doubt when the car is driven this IS an issue to SOME (not all) people. Clearly, BMW is going for a different feel, more mainstream perhaps like a toyota or honda or other kind of vehicle aimed at a broader demographic. I think this undoubtedly makes business sense, and after all, BMW is a business. But maybe those of us desiring a more of a sports sedan are going to be sacrificed as BMW moves to a more mainstream feel.

The question is, whether or not there will be adjustments for the minority of us who are enthusiasts. Additionally, if BMW reads these boards, it would be nice for them to get regular feedback.

Thanks for the opinions. And yes, the 335i is great steering, but i dont expect a 5 series to be a 3 series. Nevertheless, the steering and feel of my older 5s was subjectively superior and at the "enthusiast" target. I hope BMW will remember us, maybe it will be be just for the M5, while the others are more of a generic steering product.
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  #11  
Old 10-09-2010, 05:51 PM
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1HOT BMR 1HOT BMR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sambb View Post
I have owned a few 5s (540i, 530xi) and a 335i. I am strongly considering the f10, but after a few test drives in it, and its competition (mercedes, infiniti, audi), i am downright shocked at how un-BMW the steering is... I drove a 535i and the 550, and I am really a little turned off, almost lexus-like in its steering. At speed, the competitors are better, but that is an opinion.
Nevertheless....
I am sure that BMW does r&D and has done the market research, and this is where they want to go. I have no problem with that, but for the "enthusiast", does anyone think it will be changed back, rather than pander to the masses?

I understand that BMW has to market the car to a wide variety of tastes, and there are probably fewer enthusiasts than there are others who like the numb and dead feel, but is there any recourse for us... It is a tough issue to look at, because maybe the enthusiast is a different target than the masses, and a company probably needs to market to the masses.
It will never be fixed - guaranteed! Just go and buy a car that has the steering feel you like and forget these new BMWs with "un-BMW" steering. I'm a member of "the masses" who happens to like the new "numb and dead" steering and that is why I'm buying my first BMW ever. In the end we all end up buying what we like so I'm sure you will do the same.
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  #12  
Old 10-09-2010, 06:08 PM
solstice solstice is offline
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I don't think you can gurantee that it will not be improved but I agree with 1HOTBMR. Don't count on it when you buy. I would likely have ended with a V6 Panamera or maybe an X6 if I could do it allover.
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  #13  
Old 10-09-2010, 06:49 PM
sambb sambb is offline
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I don't think you can gurantee that it will not be improved but I agree with 1HOTBMR. Don't count on it when you buy. I would likely have ended with a V6 Panamera or maybe an X6 if I could do it allover.
very interesting opinions, and thanks.
I think it is really a personal preference, but I am sure this 5 series will sell very well, but i guess fundamentally it is less "sports" and more "sedan". It creates a dilemma for the enthusiast.

I wonder if there are statistics on repeat owners - i.e. people who have had sports oriented 5s in the past, and if they re****, and what their opinions are. Forums like this can help with that discourse.
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  #14  
Old 10-09-2010, 07:02 PM
richschneid richschneid is offline
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Before I would make up my mind I would try to test drive a car with the combination of integral active steering and dynamic handling package. The steering effort with the DHP can be set by the driver to a higher level of steering effort. And it may even be more programmable with the IAS. IAS should certainly improve the handling and maneuverability, but I have never driven it so I can't say how it affects the "feel" and "feedback". I did have active steering on my 650i. It had two settings, sport and normal. The difference was dramatic. I alway drove it in sport because the "feel" was more BMW like. The RWD F10s are available with IAS and it's not that expensive. I would give it a try before making any decision, if you can find one to test drive. Make sure the car has DHP and put it into "sport" mode when you drive it. Find out if the IAS has any additional programmability beyond putting the car into DHP sport mode.
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  #15  
Old 10-09-2010, 07:33 PM
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Actually I agree with Rich on this one. The F10 steers better in Sport Mode in a F10 with DHP and IAS. The F10 steers 98% as good as my 2008 550i E60 with the M-sport package when it is at 50+ as abmwc pointed out. However I believe that BMW will implement a software upgrade, much like they with the E60. I am sure that the steering will be improved beyond the software fix, but when?
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  #16  
Old 10-09-2010, 08:46 PM
sambb sambb is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richschneid View Post
Before I would make up my mind I would try to test drive a car with the combination of integral active steering and dynamic handling package. The steering effort with the DHP can be set by the driver to a higher level of steering effort. And it may even be more programmable with the IAS. IAS should certainly improve the handling and maneuverability, but I have never driven it so I can't say how it affects the "feel" and "feedback". I did have active steering on my 650i. It had two settings, sport and normal. The difference was dramatic. I alway drove it in sport because the "feel" was more BMW like. The RWD F10s are available with IAS and it's not that expensive. I would give it a try before making any decision, if you can find one to test drive. Make sure the car has DHP and put it into "sport" mode when you drive it. Find out if the IAS has any additional programmability beyond putting the car into DHP sport mode.
very interesting indeed
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  #17  
Old 10-09-2010, 08:53 PM
Nedmundo Nedmundo is offline
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I'd bet BMW will change the steering feel. When the current generation 3 Series was introduced, it had light steering that got poor reviews in Car & Driver, etc., and it was addressed for the next model year. At a minimum, they might provide different feel with the Sport Package. BMW isn't alone in getting criticized for numbness in its electrically assisted steering. I've read similar comments about this in Audis, and Acura's TSX and TL have been hammered for it, especially the TSX. Acura revised the TSX's steering response/feel for 2010, and I bought one. It's still somewhat numb, but has a good linear response and decent weight, so overall it's not too bad. If Acura responds to criticism about this, I'd expect the same from BMW.

I'd really like to know exactly why electrically assisted steering seems prone to poor feel/feedback, so much so that even BMW and Audi have issues with it.
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  #18  
Old 10-09-2010, 09:12 PM
sambb sambb is offline
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I hope they do change... from car and driver:
Spooky Steering

Unfortunately, the 528i also shares with the rest of the 5-series its new electric power steering. While weighty, the setup feels artificial and provides zero feedback. Its imperturbable tracking and smooth feel will likely endear it to more laid-back buyers, but we consider this a frightening departure from what made BMW great. Fishing in the mainstream may be profitable, but it nets the kind of buyers who painted Toyota as an unapologetic killing machine.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:14 PM
solstice solstice is offline
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very interesting indeed
Be absolutely sure to test it first. IAS is reported more than once to reduce the communictive aspect of the steering. Both rich and pharding compares the F10s steering with IAS equipped cars. I had a none IAS E60 and I can tell you that for me the difference is astronimical in favour of the E60 or pretty much any other car I owned.
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  #20  
Old 10-09-2010, 09:28 PM
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I ordered my car with IAS after driving both. I liked the regular steering fine but I liked it more with IAS. The difference is noticeable and much to my liking - the turning radius is just amazing for such a big car - but I'm coming from a car with the worst turning radius of any car ever - the 2005 - 200X Acura RL. I'm not sure if IAS makes it more BMW like, but I suspect not since I never really liked the steering of most BMWs until I drove the F10.
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  #21  
Old 10-09-2010, 09:31 PM
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I am also interested in driving the x-drive models to see how their hydraulic steering compares to the electric steering on the RWD F10's. Historically I have always preferred a RWD sedan, as I enjoy using the throttle to steer / rotate the rear end. But from comments others have made (even Rich), I suspect the hydraulic steering may tip the balance in favor of a x-Drive model when our 2008 X5 comes off lease next summer. I am really hoping I like it, as I'd rather stay with BMW than go back to Audi or Mercedes.
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  #22  
Old 10-09-2010, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by sambb View Post
I dont think the thread is worthless. There are several congratulatory and negative threads in forums.

[snip]

The question is, whether or not there will be adjustments for the minority of us who are enthusiasts. Additionally, if BMW reads these boards, it would be nice for them to get regular feedback.
And my point was that this topic has been discussed to death already in case it wasn't clear the first time around. I would love to hear what additional value this thread brings besides rehashing the same points over and over.

Search is your friend:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=481248

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=485066

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=478645
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  #23  
Old 10-09-2010, 11:04 PM
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markl53 markl53 is offline
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Originally Posted by abmwc View Post
So do you think it compares favorably with the 335i? Did you have the sport package?

Thanks,
abmwc
I did not have the sport pack in my 335i. The steering in the 535i is definitely "different", especially at low speed. However, I find I like it. At highway speeds, it is more taut, and for me, good on-center feel. Yes, on the highway I think very similar to my 335i. However, the F10 is a totally different car from the 3 series, it isn't just a larger version of a 3. Even though the suspension in my non-DHP set up feels taut and doesn't wallow, it rides MUCH quieter and smoother than my non-sport 335i. Once I got used to the physically larger size, and now having driven it for a few weeks, I have to say it doesn't feel "big" or heavy when driving. There are several areas of highway construction where I drive to work every day where you have to curve around some work areas at 60 mph or higher. My 535i handles these as nimbly as my 335i, without lean or sloppiness. All in all, I think BMW did a great job with the 5.
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  #24  
Old 10-10-2010, 06:04 AM
sambb sambb is offline
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can someone offer a comparison of the xi steering and the base i steering, and i steering with the option$?
After reading all the 5 series reviews, esp. from car and driver (who love BMWs), it would be nice to get some comparo opinions from enthusiasts who desire a sports sedan. I am more on the car and driver "side" of what i like to drive, rather than on the "lexus" side, so it would be interesting to see some comparisons.
I have a call into my CA to see if we can do a comparo. He sold me my other 5s and told me upfront that things are pretty different with this model. However, I am encouraged that BMW has changed the steering before.. i forgot about that! It is nice to know that they do acknowledge that mistakes can happen, that is a lot more than most other car companies! Nevertheless, i suppose these are the vagaries of first year models... at least the auto mags have prepared us.
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  #25  
Old 10-10-2010, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by enigma View Post
And my point was that this topic has been discussed to death already in case it wasn't clear the first time around. I would love to hear what additional value this thread brings besides rehashing the same points over and over.

Search is your friend:
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=481248

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=485066

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=478645
This topic is a big deal and if BMW Enthusiasts want to to continue to talk about here so be it. If someone doesn't want to participate for whatever reason so be it.
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