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E63 / E64 6 Series (2003 - 2013)
The E63/E64 BMW 6 Series builds on BMW's sporty heritage with aggressive lines and an incredible motor to back the design up. Available in coupe and convertible trims with a standard 4.8 liter engine producing 360 horsepower and 360 lb-ft of torque, the 6-series is a popular choice that exceeds expectations.

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  #1  
Old 07-30-2013, 12:23 PM
Karen1122 Karen1122 is offline
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Location: Philadelphia
 
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Mein Auto: 04-645Ci, 10-750iL, 03-M3
A question on the pop up roll bars

Hello,

I am interested in taking a 650 convertible on the track to learn to drive it at its limits. The local track requires that any convertible with pop up roll bars have the bars manually extended and the top down while driving.

I have seen this done on a 1 series and there are instructions on the web of how to manually retract the bars once they are extended for a 318, but I can not find any details on the 6er. Additionally, I get different advice from different BMW mechanics.

A few questions if anyone out there has any experience:

1) Are the pop-up bars spring loaded and can be reset or are they more like an airbag and a one time use thing.

2) Has anyone seen the bars extended the bars extended other than in an accident?

3) If anyone has any experience with meeting these qualifications to get a 6 vert on the track, your knowledge would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your help!
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  #2  
Old 07-30-2013, 06:01 PM
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TopDownInFL TopDownInFL is offline
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A question on the pop up roll bars

They are spring loaded and logic would dictate they can be reset but I've never seen it done.


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2012 650 Coupe - Alpine White / Black Interior / M Package / Premium Sound
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  #3  
Old 07-31-2013, 04:19 AM
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Yorgi Yorgi is offline
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After watching a YouTube E46 pop-up bar reset procedure I would guess the E64 system would be identical. After removing the plastic trim and headrest cover simply pull a lever to unlock and lower the loops. The guy in the E46 video seemed to fire the system using DIS - that requirement alone makes this whole idea a pretty big ordeal if you don't already have DIS up and running.

Personally I would just find a different track day organizer (or track) with more lax convertible rules. Are you sure this is the track itself requiring the deployment or just the organizer of the event (my guess).

I've taken my 6er to many track days and never had any restrictions related to the convertible. I've seen schools require the top be closed which is not a bad idea since your arms will be safer inside the car, but that's it.

Some general tracking advice. If this is your first time on the track I would HIGHLY recommend you attend a day that provides instructors. There are some basic concepts that should be taught to anyone who drives on a track and there is no better way to learn these than having an instructor sit beside you. Instruction will also greatly reduce your chance of having an accident.
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Last edited by Yorgi; 07-31-2013 at 04:26 AM.
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  #4  
Old 07-31-2013, 07:06 AM
Karen1122 Karen1122 is offline
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Location: Philadelphia
 
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Mein Auto: 04-645Ci, 10-750iL, 03-M3
Thanks for the quick responses. They are greatly appreciated.

It is good to know that the mechanism is spring loaded and resettable. Now just need to find a shop that is familiar with the procedure.

Yorgi - Your input on the track is spot on. A little clarification on my origional post. I used the word I a bit too much. The subject 6er is not mine, but a firiend's. He has seen the experience I have had with my E46 on the track and wanted to get in on the fun.

Your strong suggestion of going with an instructor is great advice. BMWCCA, PCA and the local track itself require in car instruction until such time as you have the necessary experience and are signed off to go solo. Beyond the requirement, an instructor talking you through the session is a great way to increase your skills very quickly. It is amazing at how helpful and dedicated the instructor crews with the local car clubs are. For little or no money, they volenteer to risk life and limb by jumping in to the car with a green strudent just to promote the sport itself. These people are truely dedicated and deserve our respect and thanks.

Back to the car itself. Each of the clubs and the local track have different local requirements for cabrios. BMW will not let a vert run - period. One chapter of PCA wants the bars extended and the top up. Another requires the bars up and top down but with arm restraints. The track itself can accept the top in either position, but the bars must be extended. This is a state law.

Yorgi - In your experience with the 6 on the track, how did the stock rotors and pads hold up? It is expected that fresh high temp fluid will be put in to prevent boiling but I was curious about the performance of the stock brakes with such a heavy car.

Thanks to all for your input.
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  #5  
Old 08-01-2013, 08:56 PM
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Yorgi Yorgi is offline
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Wow, state law!? At least in Philly you are within a 1.5 hour drive of 4-5 different states. Sounds like your local chapters are more strict than what I've experienced locally but then again I have not been out to those types of DEs in several years.

I started out with the PCA and BMW CCA events and I think they are the best foundation for anyone who wants to get into driving on the track. Very well organized and safe. These days I go to private events that are a lot more lax and less crowded but they are not a good idea for first timers.

Up until yesterday, I had only tried my 6er on large fast tracks, and they were a blast. Top-down cruising at 80% is a nice change once in a while compared to at-the-limit lapping in my track prepped M3. I brought the 650i to a tight track yesterday for the first time and it was not that fun (to me anyway). You really feel the weight in slow corners. The car is still well balanced and pretty flat if you have active roll bars.

OEM brake pads will be fine for anyone who is a beginner or intermediate track driver. I am advanced and went through a new set of OEM pads in one day. After the OEM pads I upgraded to StopTech Street Performance pads and they have held up great with about 50% pad left after several track days and two trips to the Tail of the Dragon. The OEM 6er rotors are awesome, the only thing better are two piece floating rotors you get in high-end BBKs.

If the track is hard on brakes I would keep the number of laps down to 5 or 6 max at a time. You will start to feel the brakes fade which is a good indication it's time to come in and let them cool off a bit or you will cook the pads. Make sure you tell your friend to do a proper cool down lap with no braking at all or they may end up warping very expensive rotors.
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