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F30 / F31 / F32 / F33 (2012 - current)
The sixth generation 3 series, chassis code F30. 2013 model year 328i and 335i sedans now in production. Read the F30 frequently asked question thread for all your basic question and dive into all the details in the ultimate F30 information thread.

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  #1  
Old 08-15-2012, 09:56 AM
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tim330i tim330i is offline
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CONFIRMED - F30 xDrive with Adaptive M Suspension Does NOT Lower Ride Height

BMW F30 3 series all wheel drive - xDrive

For model year 2013 BMW released the F30 3 series with their all wheel drive, xDrive system. There has been some confusion about the suspension options available for xDrive F30s. The 2013 3 series ordering guide is clear that BMW is not offering the sport suspension on the xDrive F30. BMW however is offering the Adaptive M Suspension and the Dynamic Handling Package, which also includes the Adaptive M Suspension. The Adaptive M Suspension offered for the rear wheel drive F30 includes a 10mm lower sport spring, the same spring that is offer on the sport suspension.

On the xDrive all wheel drive variants of the 3 series the Adaptive M Suspension will NOT lower the ride height of the car. Regardless of package and options all xDrive F30s will have the same ride height. We believe this is to keep the front drive axle CV joint angles as straight at possible as additional lowering would put them outside of allowable factory specifications.

I know this will be a disappointment to some of you that have an xDrive F30 in your future.

Last edited by tim330i; 08-15-2012 at 10:02 AM.
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  #2  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:01 AM
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rtgirard rtgirard is offline
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Tim... thank you for confirming this. Not the outcome I was hoping for, but sure is good to finally have an answer.
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  #3  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:15 AM
sr5959 sr5959 is offline
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I was thinking of adding Sport wheels to my baseline, but I was worried how they would look without the lowered suspension. Now I just have to find an X-Drive Sport and check it out...
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  #4  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:31 AM
samualcc samualcc is offline
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Originally Posted by sr5959 View Post
I was thinking of adding Sport wheels to my baseline, but I was worried how they would look without the lowered suspension. Now I just have to find an X-Drive Sport and check it out...
http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=635940

Still looks hot, but something about the ride height takes away from the aggressive look, especially from the rear.
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  #5  
Old 08-15-2012, 10:40 AM
bmwf30 bmwf30 is offline
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I on the other hand am very happy about this. Area where I live has lots of speed bumps and steep driveways. Whatever the terrain, id hate to scrape the bottom with a lowered height. Moreover it would really suck if the drive areas that usually cleared without a problem with my lexus will have problems with my bimmer. On top of that a red embarassing face if someone saw it....
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  #6  
Old 08-15-2012, 06:35 PM
kosmo kosmo is offline
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Great news for people who drive on imperfectly plowed snowy roads! Hoping this carries over to the wagon version we should see shortly.
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  #7  
Old 08-15-2012, 08:34 PM
VLing VLing is offline
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I originally wanted to order a 2013 F30 Sedan xDrive. Both of my current vehicles (Honda) are all wheel drive and wanted the same assurance that I would be able to get up the hill to my house; during the few days of black ice and few inches of snow we get in the Pacific Northwest.

The dealer CA talked me out of the xDrive and here was his logic:

1) You don't need xDrive that often and you should drive your other all wheel drive on the days you need get up that hill.
2) The xDrive was $2K more than the RWD
3) You will get lower MPG in the xDrive. He said 2-3 MPG lower. However the EPA just tested the xDrive and it actually test 1 MPG lower.
4) xDrive will add 230 lbs to the weight of the car.

Since there was no F30 Sedan xDrive to test in 2012 (new for 2013) I could not evaluate the RWD verses the xDrive. But to me the RWD has a perfect 50/50 balance and did not know whether it would be the same for the xDrive.

Decided the go with the RWD and the $2k difference was applied to get the lighting package and HK sound.
No regrets.....

Last edited by VLing; 08-15-2012 at 08:36 PM.
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  #8  
Old 08-15-2012, 08:45 PM
fb88 fb88 is offline
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Is F30 xdrive system the same as in E90?
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  #9  
Old 08-15-2012, 09:03 PM
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boltjaM3s boltjaM3s is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VLing View Post
I originally wanted to order a 2013 F30 Sedan xDrive. Both of my current vehicles (Honda) are all wheel drive and wanted the same assurance that I would be able to get up the hill to my house; during the few days of black ice and few inches of snow we get in the Pacific Northwest.

The dealer CA talked me out of the xDrive and here was his logic:

1) You don't need xDrive that often and you should drive your other all wheel drive on the days you need get up that hill.
2) The xDrive was $2K more than the RWD
3) You will get lower MPG in the xDrive. He said 2-3 MPG lower. However the EPA just tested the xDrive and it actually test 1 MPG lower.
4) xDrive will add 230 lbs to the weight of the car.

Since there was no F30 Sedan xDrive to test in 2012 (new for 2013) I could not evaluate the RWD verses the xDrive. But to me the RWD has a perfect 50/50 balance and did not know whether it would be the same for the xDrive.

Decided the go with the RWD and the $2k difference was applied to get the lighting package and HK sound.
No regrets.....
+1

Good decision, I did the same 5 years ago on my E93 and learned a valuable secret: With a good set of snow tires, your F30 RWD will handle about 90% as well as if it had AWD.

XDrive is a great hip-pocket extra bit of insurance to have on a terribly nasty day but it's really all about the snow tires. And not that this will bring you any comfort because they might crash into you, but RWD on snow tires will make you safer than 90% of the other cars on the road who are using AWD and all seasons.

Either way, for those taking the F30 with XDrive, you'll love it. I just did 30 months in an XDrive E90 M-Sport and it handled like a dream in all conditions; that 10mm isn't very noticeable so don't fret.

BJ
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Last edited by boltjaM3s; 08-15-2012 at 09:05 PM.
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  #10  
Old 08-15-2012, 09:26 PM
dtc100 dtc100 is offline
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Audi Quarttro does not have the height limitation, they seem to sit quite low, yet people buy them for snow driving more so than other brands.
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  #11  
Old 08-15-2012, 09:38 PM
VLing VLing is offline
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Just think about the Sport Suspension being 10mm lower. Question... when parking up against a curb or concrete tire block in some parking lots, does the lower sports suspension cause any scraping of the front body? I see many folks backing into parking spots in Bimmers; so their rear of the car is against the curb. Any input would be great. Hate to learn the hard way when my new ride is delivered and I hear a scraping sound when parking. It would ruin my day.....being slightly OCD about my vehicles.
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  #12  
Old 08-15-2012, 09:49 PM
dtc100 dtc100 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VLing View Post
Just think about the Sport Suspension being 10mm lower. Question... when parking up against a curb or concrete tire block in some parking lots, does the lower sports suspension cause any scraping of the front body? I see many folks backing into parking spots in Bimmers; so their rear of the car is against the curb. Any input would be great. Hate to learn the hard way when my new ride is delivered and I hear a scraping sound when parking. It would ruin my day.....being slightly OCD about my vehicles.
Oh yeah, my E90 does not have lowered body, and it scrapes.
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  #13  
Old 08-15-2012, 09:56 PM
sf_loft sf_loft is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boltjaM3s View Post
+1

Good decision, I did the same 5 years ago on my E93 and learned a valuable secret: With a good set of snow tires, your F30 RWD will handle about 90% as well as if it had AWD.

XDrive is a great hip-pocket extra bit of insurance to have on a terribly nasty day but it's really all about the snow tires. And not that this will bring you any comfort because they might crash into you, but RWD on snow tires will make you safer than 90% of the other cars on the road who are using AWD and all seasons.

Either way, for those taking the F30 with XDrive, you'll love it. I just did 30 months in an XDrive E90 M-Sport and it handled like a dream in all conditions; that 10mm isn't very noticeable so don't fret.

BJ
+1 I agree with BJ. It's all about the tires and with the highly intrusive traction control of the BMW, 90% of RWD owners will be just fine with the right set of tires. They have to be winter tires though since not all all-seasons are great. Get the XDrive if you don't want to keep two sets of tires and use all-seasons year round.
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  #14  
Old 08-16-2012, 07:39 AM
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floydarogers floydarogers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
Audi Quarttro does not have the height limitation, they seem to sit quite low, yet people buy them for snow driving more so than other brands.
Audi is also a FWD-based car and they didn't have to compromise the front drivetrain design.
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  #15  
Old 08-16-2012, 07:59 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtc100 View Post
Audi Quarttro does not have the height limitation, they seem to sit quite low, yet people buy them for snow driving more so than other brands.
The 3 series as you know is primarily a RWD car and was designed with this in mind. The Audi on the other hand is primarily an AWD car and was designed that way.

(Sorry, I didn't read post 14 before writing this. I don't know if the A4 was designed as a FWD car or an AWD car. I'm sure there are other factors like the overall design of the AWD systems.)

Last edited by Michael Schott; 08-16-2012 at 08:02 AM.
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  #16  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:04 AM
dtc100 dtc100 is offline
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Originally Posted by floydarogers View Post
Audi is also a FWD-based car and they didn't have to compromise the front drivetrain design.
I am increasingly leaning towards AWD for reason different than most AWD buyers. I like the fact it has twice the contact patches on the asphalt/concrete, helps out at autoxes. The xdrive's body height becomes a negative point.
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  #17  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:04 AM
sunny5280 sunny5280 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VLing View Post
I originally wanted to order a 2013 F30 Sedan xDrive. Both of my current vehicles (Honda) are all wheel drive and wanted the same assurance that I would be able to get up the hill to my house; during the few days of black ice and few inches of snow we get in the Pacific Northwest.

The dealer CA talked me out of the xDrive and here was his logic:

1) You don't need xDrive that often and you should drive your other all wheel drive on the days you need get up that hill.
2) The xDrive was $2K more than the RWD
3) You will get lower MPG in the xDrive. He said 2-3 MPG lower. However the EPA just tested the xDrive and it actually test 1 MPG lower.
4) xDrive will add 230 lbs to the weight of the car.

Since there was no F30 Sedan xDrive to test in 2012 (new for 2013) I could not evaluate the RWD verses the xDrive. But to me the RWD has a perfect 50/50 balance and did not know whether it would be the same for the xDrive.

Decided the go with the RWD and the $2k difference was applied to get the lighting package and HK sound.
No regrets.....
It's already been determined safety is the most important factor therefore AWD with snows is the way to go. No other option is acceptable.
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  #18  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:22 AM
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tim330i tim330i is offline
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I have to disagree. AWD does not let you corner or brake better, snow tires do. Accidents in the winter are seldom from the inability to accelerate.

Anyways on the Audi lowering issues. The Audi engines are mounted transverse which gives them better front half shaft packaging then the BMW has for sure. Having the passenger side shaft run through the oil pan cannot be the most efficient.

Tim
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  #19  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:30 AM
dtc100 dtc100 is offline
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Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
I have to disagree. AWD does not let you corner or brake better, snow tires do. Accidents in the winter are seldom from the inability to accelerate.

Anyways on the Audi lowering issues. The Audi engines are mounted transverse which gives them better front half shaft packaging then the BMW has for sure. Having the passenger side shaft run through the oil pan cannot be the most efficient.

Tim
Spring height issue aside, most people want lowered body mainly to cover the gap between the rubber and fender. It can be easily resolved by designing fenders specifically for the xdrives to cover the gap.
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  #20  
Old 08-16-2012, 08:41 AM
sunny5280 sunny5280 is offline
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I have to disagree. AWD does not let you corner or brake better, snow tires do. Accidents in the winter are seldom from the inability to accelerate.
That's why I said AWD with snow tires. Everything else is a non-starter.
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  #21  
Old 08-16-2012, 09:31 AM
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tim330i tim330i is offline
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Snow tires on RWD seems more then adequate to me. I won't buy AWD for 3 days out of 365.
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  #22  
Old 08-16-2012, 09:38 AM
sunny5280 sunny5280 is offline
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Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
Snow tires on RWD seems more then adequate to me. I won't buy AWD for 3 days out of 365.
You have to take it up with BJ. He was the one who determined safety was the number one factor and AWD with snows delivered it better than any other combination of power train / tire combination.

Last edited by sunny5280; 08-16-2012 at 09:41 AM.
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  #23  
Old 08-16-2012, 10:00 AM
kevins950 kevins950 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VLing View Post
I originally wanted to order a 2013 F30 Sedan xDrive. Both of my current vehicles (Honda) are all wheel drive and wanted the same assurance that I would be able to get up the hill to my house; during the few days of black ice and few inches of snow we get in the Pacific Northwest.

The dealer CA talked me out of the xDrive and here was his logic:

1) You don't need xDrive that often and you should drive your other all wheel drive on the days you need get up that hill.
2) The xDrive was $2K more than the RWD
3) You will get lower MPG in the xDrive. He said 2-3 MPG lower. However the EPA just tested the xDrive and it actually test 1 MPG lower.
4) xDrive will add 230 lbs to the weight of the car.

Since there was no F30 Sedan xDrive to test in 2012 (new for 2013) I could not evaluate the RWD verses the xDrive. But to me the RWD has a perfect 50/50 balance and did not know whether it would be the same for the xDrive.

Decided the go with the RWD and the $2k difference was applied to get the lighting package and HK sound.
No regrets.....
+1 At the end of the day, what matters is that your happy with your decision. If your happy with the results, you've made the right choice. I have no doubt that you'll get years of satisfaction from your BMW. Congrats & enjoy your new ride.
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  #24  
Old 08-16-2012, 10:06 AM
Michael Schott Michael Schott is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tim330i View Post
Snow tires on RWD seems more then adequate to me. I won't buy AWD for 3 days out of 365.
Exactly right Tim. I value light weight and nimble handling in my 328i. AWD is the antithesis of these.
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  #25  
Old 08-16-2012, 10:08 AM
sunny5280 sunny5280 is offline
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Exactly right Tim. I value light weight and nimble handling in my 328i. AWD is the antithesis of these.
You don't value safety?
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