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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 02-04-2013, 06:48 AM
theresearcher theresearcher is offline
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550i Options: Can I go wrong with these?

I am preparing to submit an order for a 550i custom build and have a question on some specific options/packages. I have done a forum searched and read about these options but my question is a bit more focused. Aside from cost, are there any downsides or negatives to the following options?:
* Integral Active Steering
* Dynamic Damper Control
* 8-Speed Sport Automatic Transmission

I have already made up my mind on getting M-Sport and the Executive Package (along with a few other goodies). Any thoughts are appreciated!
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  #2  
Old 02-04-2013, 06:54 AM
jjsC6 jjsC6 is offline
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Nothing wrong with them. I think the first two will not likely bring any value at resale time as most buyers don't care about them. For me they would be worth something - but like the regulars on the forum we are the small percentage of hard-core performance enthusiasts. But like I said, I see no downside other than the cost.
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  #3  
Old 02-04-2013, 07:02 AM
kthankzbye kthankzbye is offline
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I would get Dynamic Drive/ARS instead of IAS. The ARS makes the car flat around the corners and bends. I have ARS and coupled with either Dinan or ACS springs will make the car feel super planted (what body roll?). The DDC is worth it too, with DDC, ARS, and some lowering springs, you'll enjoy the car much more. The 8 Speed SAT only gives you a nicer shifter and some paddles. Having the sport shifter looks much nicer than the regular shifter. I don't use the paddles as much as I should.
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  #4  
Old 02-04-2013, 08:02 AM
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getz getz is offline
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I would skip the ARS, but the absolutley musts in my book where the DDC and the sport Automatic as well as the M-Sport package. Add a Dinan stage 2 tune and possibly the shock ware and you should be good to go. Oddly enough the Car and Driver review mentioned the ARS wasn't worth the dough as well. The sport automatic actually allows for more aggressive shift mapping with quicker shifts (it isn't just cosmetic).
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Last edited by getz; 02-04-2013 at 08:03 AM.
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  #5  
Old 02-04-2013, 08:12 AM
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cordoor cordoor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kthankzbye View Post
The ARS makes the car flat around the corners and bends. I have ARS and coupled with either Dinan or ACS springs will make the car feel super planted (what body roll?)
I have ARS and DDC coming on my 550 order. I don't want to deal with adding aftermarket springs. Will my vehicle still be relatively flat when corning hard? Or are aftermarket springs an absolute must? I really don't want to have to get them, but I don't want the vehicle rolling over during a turn, either.

-Corey
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  #6  
Old 02-04-2013, 08:27 AM
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getz getz is offline
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A stock non sport 550 without either would likely perform at 9/10ths driving better than 99.9% drivers whom pilot these cars. Do not worry about your car flipping over.
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  #7  
Old 02-04-2013, 08:47 AM
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cordoor cordoor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by getz View Post
A stock non sport 550 without either would likely perform at 9/10ths driving better than 99.9% drivers whom pilot these cars. Do not worry about your car flipping over.
Haha.

I didn't mean "roll over." I meant "lot's of body roll."

I want the vehicle to corner relatively flat. I don't need it to be super-duper-double-dog-flat. Just flat to very flat. Will I get this with only ARS and DDC? Or will I *have* to get aftermarket springs?

-Corey
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  #8  
Old 02-04-2013, 08:52 AM
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Decboy Decboy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theresearcher View Post
I am preparing to submit an order for a 550i custom build and have a question on some specific options/packages. I have done a forum searched and read about these options but my question is a bit more focused. Aside from cost, are there any downsides or negatives to the following options?:
* Integral Active Steering
* Dynamic Damper Control
* 8-Speed Sport Automatic Transmission

I have already made up my mind on getting M-Sport and the Executive Package (along with a few other goodies). Any thoughts are appreciated!
I have the latter two in our 550. DDC is really a personal preference. I like to have the option to adjust the dampers for different ride comfort. For MY13 without DDC, you get the M Sport Suspension and some folks here will tell you they like that setup. There are a lot of mixed write ups and opinions on ARS. I suggests test drive the 550 without ARS if you haven't already done so and do a few hard corners to see how you like it.

SAT is a no brainer, get it.
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  #9  
Old 02-04-2013, 11:29 AM
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Keyser Soze Keyser Soze is offline
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I'd save the money on the DDC/IAS and spend it on the fancier Nappa leather seats and the seat heater (since the 550 comes with the multi-contour seats already.)
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Last edited by Keyser Soze; 02-04-2013 at 11:32 AM.
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  #10  
Old 02-04-2013, 11:33 AM
bubbahead bubbahead is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cordoor View Post
I have ARS and DDC coming on my 550 order. I don't want to deal with adding aftermarket springs. Will my vehicle still be relatively flat when corning hard? Or are aftermarket springs an absolute must? I really don't want to have to get them, but I don't want the vehicle rolling over during a turn, either.

-Corey
You will be perfectly fine. I have DDC and ARS. Don't bother with anything else unless your tracking it You'll see for yourself once you get it.
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  #11  
Old 02-04-2013, 01:03 PM
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cordoor cordoor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyser Soze View Post
I'd save the money on the DDC/IAS and spend it on the fancier Nappa leather seats...
Some colors don't come in nappa. I wanted Venetian Beige. No nappa option.

The individual leathers cannot, by default, be ordered with M sport. You can special order them with M sport, but then they cost an arm and leg (whereas if you get them in the individual package, they only cost an arm).

You could also special order a nappa leather from the 7 series. Again, you'd be into arm and leg territory.

-Corey
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  #12  
Old 02-04-2013, 01:03 PM
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cordoor cordoor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bubbahead View Post
You will be perfectly fine. I have DDC and ARS. Don't bother with anything else unless your tracking it You'll see for yourself once you get it.
Sweet! Rubbing my hands together...

-Corey
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  #13  
Old 02-04-2013, 04:17 PM
Stonehauler Stonehauler is offline
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Asking us what to get without telling us a bit about yourself and your driving habits will get you a whole bunch of responses about what we, as individual responders, like. Please tell us about your driving habits, driving style, what you will be using this for mostly (daily driver, weekend car, occasional driver, etc), what kind of roads/speeds you will be driving on mostly, previous cars, and what you like/dislike about them. Also, discuss your thoughts on manual vs automatic transmissions and why you don't want the manual (other than gas guzzler tax)

My F10 is a great car...for me. I got it with everything I wanted and nothing I don't. That said, what I wan't won't exactly be what you would want. Also, if you have a budget, please talk about that too. It's nothing to be ashamed of, we all have a budget of some sort or another. Having a price point you don't want to go over will give people an idea on what to mix and match.

Look forward to your next post.
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Last edited by Stonehauler; 02-04-2013 at 04:19 PM.
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  #14  
Old 02-04-2013, 06:28 PM
pharding pharding is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bubbahead View Post
You will be perfectly fine. I have DDC and ARS. Don't bother with anything else unless your tracking it You'll see for yourself once you get it.
I have IAS, DDC, and ARS. DDC and ARS will give you no to extremely little roll on corners at speed. ARS works quite well.
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  #15  
Old 02-04-2013, 07:56 PM
bmguy bmguy is offline
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Im also in the DDC and ARS camp, I thought it was a very big improvement over base models cars. I didn't however have the fixed sport suspension to compare it to when I got the car...

However... I upgraded the springs to Dinan to get a slinky lower profile, and it was exactly enough for me, and still kept all the wheel travel... It was a very nice upgrade in my case...

I later added the Dinan shockware update, which can be done without or without the Dinan suspension upgrade..

I don't think I would have been happy without the ARS/DDC as I like to change the way the car drives based on how I'm feeling and who's with me. If the shockware was available before I did the suspension update I would have tries that first before the suspension upgrade to see if I was happy with it....

Basically, as others have noted without knowing what you like how you drive etc, its hard to recommend... But I can say that if you are not sure and want options on how it drives... Fr sure get the ARS/DDC... You can decide if you need more, add shockware, and if you need even more add springs etc on top of that if needed...
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  #16  
Old 02-04-2013, 09:16 PM
kthankzbye kthankzbye is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmguy View Post
Im also in the DDC and ARS camp, I thought it was a very big improvement over base models cars. I didn't however have the fixed sport suspension to compare it to when I got the car...

However... I upgraded the springs to Dinan to get a slinky lower profile, and it was exactly enough for me, and still kept all the wheel travel... It was a very nice upgrade in my case...

I later added the Dinan shockware update, which can be done without or without the Dinan suspension upgrade..

I don't think I would have been happy without the ARS/DDC as I like to change the way the car drives based on how I'm feeling and who's with me. If the shockware was available before I did the suspension update I would have tries that first before the suspension upgrade to see if I was happy with it....

Basically, as others have noted without knowing what you like how you drive etc, its hard to recommend... But I can say that if you are not sure and want options on how it drives... Fr sure get the ARS/DDC... You can decide if you need more, add shockware, and if you need even more add springs etc on top of that if needed...
+1 ARS and DDC does the job. If you need more, add shockwave and/or springs.
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  #17  
Old 02-04-2013, 09:59 PM
Tuffyboy Tuffyboy is offline
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I have DDS and ARS. The ARS is significant if you want a car that feels more nimble (doesn't toss you around as much in the seats). Love the DDS too with wife and kids- otherwise it's S+ and drive it hard.

Have ACS but not yet installed- I drive more aggressive than most so want a tighter feeling car.

Also I love the paddle shifters primarily for fast downshifts- feel the knob shifts faster for some reason than the paddles. Either way it's no double clutch but "gets you in the game" and more engaged when you want it
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  #18  
Old 02-05-2013, 06:23 AM
theresearcher theresearcher is offline
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Thanks all for your feedback. I currently drive a 2006 E90 330i with the sport package. It is a great car that handles very well. I love the 5-Series but worry that it won't be as fun to drive without some of these extras. I am looking for the most sporty set up possible without adding complex, repair prone options. It is a lot to think about!
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  #19  
Old 02-05-2013, 07:04 AM
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jmfan jmfan is offline
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Coming from an E90 you will immediately notice the increased size of the F10. It took me several months to adjust and it does not bother me anymore. The added luxury and size are a plus over the E90 in my opinion. Others seem to be unable to deal with more isolation from the road feel but I feel the F10 is a great car. The sport trans is a must.
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  #20  
Old 02-05-2013, 07:20 AM
Stonehauler Stonehauler is offline
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It just so happens that my wife owns an 06 330i, and I own a 550i (2013 M Sport, ARS, Dynamic Damper Control, Sport Transmission etc)

First off, these are two COMPLETELY different cars. You will not get the same driving feel out the 550 that you get from the 330.

My car background - Prior to the 550, I owned a '04 Lexus GS430 (300 hp/315 ft-lbs NA engine). My wife owns a 2006 330i. I looked at the 04 330 and the 04 M3, but went with the Lexus (same price/hp, lots more room, lot more comfortable)
Prior to the '13 550, I would often drive my wife's 330. It was fun...over short distances. Travel any real distance (say more than 50 miles), and my butt and back starts to get tired, beat up, and sore. It handles like a dream, has great road feel, and is generally a blast to drive, but only short term over good roads.

the 550 is much more of a highway cruiser, and no amount of options is going to change that. It will not have the same ground hugging feel, the same feedback through the steering wheel, and it is a MUCH bigger car and feels harder to stop. It will have more body roll, no matter what options, and the weight distribution is not exactly 50/50. Even with the options you want (DDC, IAS), it won't give you that same feel. In fact, IAS won't give you better steering at any speeds over 30 MPH when it goes into the dead zone. Now, what the 550 does have is power (tons of it), and a LOT more comfort. It gives me more room, has better seats for my back, and in general, is in my opinion, the better car. Ask my wife, and she would say that her car is better, and she would still go with the 3 series over the 5 as she feels it gives her what she wants.

What is your reason for moving to the 5? It seems like you like the 3 a ton, so why not look at the F30 335?
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Last edited by Stonehauler; 02-05-2013 at 07:23 AM.
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  #21  
Old 02-06-2013, 01:29 AM
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mryakanisachoad mryakanisachoad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmfan View Post
Coming from an E90 you will immediately notice the increased size of the F10. It took me several months to adjust and it does not bother me anymore. The added luxury and size are a plus over the E90 in my opinion. Others seem to be unable to deal with more isolation from the road feel but I feel the F10 is a great car. The sport trans is a must.
Good post
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  #22  
Old 02-06-2013, 01:36 AM
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mryakanisachoad mryakanisachoad is offline
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Speaking from lots of experience: putting the right tires and wheels on your f10 550 will have far more impact on overall handling dynamics than any of the factory suspension gadget - gimmicks.

The unsprung weight of the factory wheel and tire set is at minimum 13 pounds too heavy. The factory wheels plus the Goodyear run flats weigh in at 63.5 lbs. That's a ridiculous amount of unsprung weight. Obese! You can easily get 25lb wheels and superior 25lb tires, which I'm doing. I already have the wheels and will carefully choose a new tire to match.

Last edited by mryakanisachoad; 02-06-2013 at 02:00 AM.
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  #23  
Old 02-06-2013, 08:16 AM
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cordoor cordoor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mryakanisachoad View Post
Speaking from lots of experience: putting the right tires and wheels on your f10 550 will have far more impact on overall handling dynamics than any of the factory suspension gadget - gimmicks.

The unsprung weight of the factory wheel and tire set is at minimum 13 pounds too heavy. The factory wheels plus the Goodyear run flats weigh in at 63.5 lbs. That's a ridiculous amount of unsprung weight. Obese! You can easily get 25lb wheels and superior 25lb tires, which I'm doing. I already have the wheels and will carefully choose a new tire to match.
The reduced unsprung weight is nice, but the benefits are minimal without also stiffening your suspension and roll bars. The biggest advantage of reducing unsprung weight is that you can stiffen your setup but maintain the same ride quality you had before the reduction.

The problem is this gets very costly.

-Corey
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