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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
The E9X is the 4th evolution of the BMW 3 series including a highly tuned twin turbo 335i variant pushing out 300hp and 300 ft. lbs. of torque. BMW continues to show that it sets the bar for true driving performance! -- View the E9X Wiki

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  #1  
Old 03-09-2013, 12:04 PM
beeky beeky is offline
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how stiff is 328 xdrive steering supposed to be?

I just drove a 2011 328 with xdrive. I was quite surprised at how stiff the steering is. The stiffness is not objectionable but I was expecting silky smooth, minimal resistance steering. When I started the car and turned the wheel to pull out of the parking space I thought something was wrong with the steering. I have never felt power assisted steering that had that sort of stiffness. When I mentioned the stiffness to the salesman who was with me in the car, his response was that BMW steering provides more feedback than most other cars and the stiffness helps damp out some of this feedback. Sounds like bs to me but he made a point of comparing BMW to a typical Japanese car that allows 'one finger' steering.

So, is this steering stiffness the norm for xdrive or 328 or BMW in general?
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  #2  
Old 03-09-2013, 01:58 PM
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Orient330iNYC Orient330iNYC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beeky View Post
I just drove a 2011 328 with xdrive. I was quite surprised at how stiff the steering is. The stiffness is not objectionable but I was expecting silky smooth, minimal resistance steering. When I started the car and turned the wheel to pull out of the parking space I thought something was wrong with the steering. I have never felt power assisted steering that had that sort of stiffness. When I mentioned the stiffness to the salesman who was with me in the car, his response was that BMW steering provides more feedback than most other cars and the stiffness helps damp out some of this feedback. Sounds like bs to me but he made a point of comparing BMW to a typical Japanese car that allows 'one finger' steering.

So, is this steering stiffness the norm for xdrive or 328 or BMW in general?
yup, its normal. the steering feels unboosted compared to a japanese/american car.
minimal resistance is something you will not find on a bmw. the newer F30s have electrically boosted steering that can be switched to lower resistance, but even at that level, the steering on a toyota or lexus will still be much lighter.
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  #3  
Old 03-09-2013, 08:56 PM
hellosopo hellosopo is offline
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I have to say I found my arms were sore the first few days I owned the car. I guess I was using muscles that I don't often exercise. One person I've let drive it asked with complete seriousness, "Does it have power steering!?"

If you want that "one finger" light steering then I would recommend the Chevy Cruze. I find the heavy steering is sometimes annoying in parking situations (to exit my driveway I have to go full right then full left... it's a bit of a handful) but otherwise I really like it.
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  #4  
Old 03-10-2013, 11:43 AM
Venom_e92X Venom_e92X is offline
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Once you get to speed the steering is weighted pretty much perferct..just use some muscle in the parking lot!
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  #5  
Old 03-12-2013, 03:21 PM
328Avenger 328Avenger is offline
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I have a 328i coupe 07 and my steering is pretty darn stiff. At first it was a bit tough to turn, but now I am used to it.
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  #6  
Old 03-14-2013, 09:03 PM
brandt2025 brandt2025 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosopo View Post
I have to say I found my arms were sore the first few days I owned the car. I guess I was using muscles that I don't often exercise. One person I've let drive it asked with complete seriousness, "Does it have power steering!?"

If you want that "one finger" light steering then I would recommend the Chevy Cruze. I find the heavy steering is sometimes annoying in parking situations (to exit my driveway I have to go full right then full left... it's a bit of a handful) but otherwise I really like it.
My 2011 328 is in the shop right now, and I am driving a rental Chevy Cruze. The first thing I noticed was how little effort was required to turn the wheel. My impression having driven the car for almost two weeks is that there is little to no feedback from the road, and it seems to require constant input to keep the car centered.

While my 328 may require a bit more strength, I certainly prefer it to the near Cadillac-like easy to spin steering wheel of the Cruze.
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  #7  
Old 03-14-2013, 09:05 PM
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captainaudio captainaudio is offline
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I think some of you guys need to spend more time at the gym. I never found the steering in my E93 to be overly stiff and neither does my wife who has a chronic shoulder injury. I can remember driving full size American cars that did not have power steering or power brakes. Those cars took some effort to maneuver.

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Last edited by captainaudio; 03-14-2013 at 09:07 PM.
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  #8  
Old 03-14-2013, 09:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainaudio View Post
I think some of you guys need to spend more time at the gym. I never found the steering in my E93 to be overly stiff and neither does my wife who has a chronic shoulder injury. I can remember driving full size American cars that did not have power steering or power brakes. Those cars took some effort to maneuver.

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  #9  
Old 03-17-2013, 05:30 PM
BMWdewd BMWdewd is offline
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Agree, the steering on the x drive is hard. But ..it's awesome- that's what she said.
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  #10  
Old 03-17-2013, 05:54 PM
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If you think the steering on an E9x is too hard there is an inexpensive and easy to implement solution.



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  #11  
Old 03-17-2013, 05:58 PM
mdintx mdintx is offline
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I just bought a 335i without xDrive but all the ones I test drove before had it. It's definitely tighter. I like it though it didn't feel linear. I went without it. Though the launch is better with xDrive, I don't need it in Texas. Plus, I have a 75-90 mile commute right now and need every mpg I can get.
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  #12  
Old 03-17-2013, 06:47 PM
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Weird thing was that I got in a Ford Fusion today and the steering was so light it felt WEIRD (it was also weird not having to hit the clutch). I have become so accustomed to the great control I get from my 3 that anything else just feels like a toy...
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  #13  
Old 03-17-2013, 07:25 PM
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3284me 3284me is online now
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OP you will get used to the steering quickly. In fact once you do and get into another car you will oversteer it like the steering wheel is going to fall off.
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Last edited by 3284me; 03-17-2013 at 07:27 PM.
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  #14  
Old 03-17-2013, 07:43 PM
drboomer drboomer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brandt2025 View Post
My 2011 328 is in the shop right now, and I am driving a rental Chevy Cruze. The first thing I noticed was how little effort was required to turn the wheel. My impression having driven the car for almost two weeks is that there is little to no feedback from the road, and it seems to require constant input to keep the car centered.

While my 328 may require a bit more strength, I certainly prefer it to the near Cadillac-like easy to spin steering wheel of the Cruze.
I got a 11 328i xdrive with 14k miles a few days ago and this is the first thing I noticed. The steering is weighted but it seems the car stays more centered while on the road. I owned a Mazda before this car and the steering was easier but it seemed like a constant struggle to keep the car aligned, maybe its just me thinking too much. Is this what youre trying to say?
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  #15  
Old 03-17-2013, 08:32 PM
Multipower Multipower is offline
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I have no problem with the steering and I think its normal for BMW x drive.
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  #16  
Old 03-18-2013, 02:02 PM
Red bull Red bull is offline
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Drive a new 3 with electric steering you won't like it. The old 3 drives like the go cart you used to drive when you were 10 years old. Now that's a real BMW.
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  #17  
Old 03-18-2013, 03:11 PM
ctuna ctuna is offline
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Buy a Jap car if you want wimpy steering

In 01 BMW tried to introduce wimpy steering and the people that got it were quite surprised
and complained to the point that BMW actually retrofitted there vehicles with a 328 steering
box. This subject keeps getting revisited and statistics keep telling marketing that wimpy steering is what people want . Eventually there will be nothing to distinguished a BMW from any other car.
But the answer is simple variable steering boost, as in a a dial to set it to your preferences.
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  #18  
Old 03-18-2013, 03:45 PM
drboomer drboomer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ctuna View Post
In 01 BMW tried to introduce wimpy steering and the people that got it were quite surprised
and complained to the point that BMW actually retrofitted there vehicles with a 328 steering
box. This subject keeps getting revisited and statistics keep telling marketing that wimpy steering is what people want . Eventually there will be nothing to distinguished a BMW from any other car.
But the answer is simple variable steering boost, as in a a dial to set it to your preferences.
Do you have a source for this?
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  #19  
Old 03-18-2013, 04:03 PM
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Inline Sixer Inline Sixer is offline
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Originally Posted by 3284me View Post
OP you will get used to the steering quickly. In fact once you do and get into another car you will oversteer it like the steering wheel is going to fall off.
My only problem is that now that I'm used to this steering feedback and general awesomeness, BMW decides to take it away for all the new models
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  #20  
Old 08-12-2013, 12:35 PM
abhiwan abhiwan is offline
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I'm resurrecting this post. I recently picked up a 2011 e91 with xdrive and i have to say the steering wheel does feel almost as if there is no power steering, it reminds me of an old alpha romeo spyder (no power steering) i had driven years ago. In any case i truly thought something was wrong having driven an e92 m3, a z4 m coupe and several e46 m3's and even a 535i with xdrive and my wagon had the stiffest steering of them all. I even had a friend drive it (the owner of the z4 m coupe) and he even said it was much stiffer then his car at low speeds. I go back and forth driving a mkvi GLI (my wife's car) and the wagon and it seems like i cant get use to the stiff steering. I just find it odd that the steering was even stiffer then the 5 series with xdrive. I took it to a dealership and they said nothing was wrong. I think i just need to drive another e9x with xdrive to fully convince me that there's nothing wrong with the car. the steering feels great at speed but around town (where i do most of my driving) it can get a bit cumbersome. thats my .02
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  #21  
Old 08-12-2013, 12:40 PM
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BiHoTTo115 BiHoTTo115 is offline
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Originally Posted by abhiwan View Post
I'm resurrecting this post. I recently picked up a 2011 e91 with xdrive and i have to say the steering wheel does feel almost as if there is no power steering, it reminds me of an old alpha romeo spyder (no power steering) i had driven years ago. In any case i truly thought something was wrong having driven an e92 m3, a z4 m coupe and several e46 m3's and even a 535i with xdrive and my wagon had the stiffest steering of them all. I even had a friend drive it (the owner of the z4 m coupe) and he even said it was much stiffer then his car at low speeds. I go back and forth driving a mkvi GLI (my wife's car) and the wagon and it seems like i cant get use to the stiff steering. I just find it odd that the steering was even stiffer then the 5 series with xdrive. I took it to a dealership and they said nothing was wrong. I think i just need to drive another e9x with xdrive to fully convince me that there's nothing wrong with the car. the steering feels great at speed but around town (where i do most of my driving) it can get a bit cumbersome. thats my .02
Maybe you could try doing a few weight exercises for your shoulders, upper and lower arms?

The steering is fine, and you get used to it. However, if you drive a boosted steering wheel car, you'll never really get used to it, for obvious reasons.
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Old 08-12-2013, 12:54 PM
abhiwan abhiwan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiHoTTo115 View Post
Maybe you could try doing a few weight exercises for your shoulders, upper and lower arms?

The steering is fine, and you get used to it. However, if you drive a boosted steering wheel car, you'll never really get used to it, for obvious reasons.
As long as there's nothing wrong with the car. the steering feels great when driving at speed. its just around town its a bit tiring. I guess we just have to get rid of the jetta and get another e9x with x drive.

hitting the gym always helps!
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  #23  
Old 08-12-2013, 06:35 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Originally Posted by 3284me View Post
OP you will get used to the steering quickly. In fact once you do and get into another car you will oversteer it like the steering wheel is going to fall off.
^^^^ THIS!
The SO's car is a Mercedes E430 Sedan. The first time I drove it after getting the E93, I darn near put it in the front yard of a house down the street from us that is at the apex of a sharp curve. The very nice thing about the BMW's steering is with it's super tight turning radius, you can make U-turns from one inside lane to the inside lane going the opposite direction without ever hitting the brakes. I'll take the "hard" steering of the BMW any day over the loose steering of its competitors.
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