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X3 F25 (2011 - current)
The latest X3 brings added style and new features to the BMW's mid-sized SUV. Talk about the BMW F25 X3 with other X3 owners now!

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  #1  
Old 05-17-2015, 07:40 AM
burjoes burjoes is offline
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Mein Auto: 2014 i3 BEV and 2014 X3
Receiver hitch for Yakima bike rack

We just bought a 2014 X3 x28i for my wife. It has the backup camera and parking sensor, but not the foot wave thing. We have a Yakima bike rack that goes into the receiver hitch, which worked great on our last car, a 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee. It had a backup camera which was easily defeatable by pressing a button.

I am not really wanting to spend hours in the garage installing it, following up with software programming, dealing with possible warranty issues (it's a CPO vehicle, so a very long warranty), etc.

If we take it to the dealer and have them do it all, what should we expect? I see at http://www.shopbmwusa.com/PRODUCT/30...CenterId=32652 - is that the simple answer I'm looking for? There are several parts there, and it does not indicate implications of the backup camera and parking sensor.

I see plenty of bike racks out there, and really don't want to spend $1400 just to be able to reuse the one we have - but now I have to convince my wife of that.

We also have a garage, and we will have to remove not just the bikes, but the rack, each time we want to go in and close the door. I'm thinking if we had a different type of rack, we could remove the bikes, but leave the rack installed, and not have it stick out several feet.

Most of the time, it would be one adult bike and one kids (20") bike going on there. Occasionally, it might be two adult bikes and the child bike. The Yakima (I believe) only holds two bikes anyway, so that may be an issue with continuing to use it anyway.

I'm handy enough to do DIY work, but am extremely busy and don't feel like I have the time for hours of work and hours of troubleshooting. After spending $100 for a simple iphone cable, I'm expecting this to hit the wallet. Any suggestions welcome.
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  #2  
Old 05-17-2015, 08:17 AM
wingless wingless is offline
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This topic shows my Invisihitch installation on my 2015 X3.

It includes a 2" square receiver for a bike rack carrier.

This is a very good system that I do not hesitate to recommend.
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  #3  
Old 05-17-2015, 12:17 PM
Jetpilot747 Jetpilot747 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2016 X3 x35i
I bought a 2016 x3 and was surprised by the cost of the trailer hitch. The dealer gave me a certificate for $500 at their parts and accessories store, so I bought the roof rack base and one mountain bike rack to fit on the base, which was less then 500.00.(slightly). It allows me to remove the bike but leave the rack on and fit in the garage no problem. It locks so it's theft proof and I can open the back hatch. Something to consider if you have no plans to tow with it.
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  #4  
Old 05-17-2015, 12:18 PM
burjoes burjoes is offline
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Jetpilot747 - how hard is it to actually put bikes up on top of the roof? My wife is about 5' 5", but her bike is a nice light one. i am also thinking of ease of getting into the garage (would have to take them off before going in), too...
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  #5  
Old 05-17-2015, 12:25 PM
Jetpilot747 Jetpilot747 is offline
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The base is a bit tall as it has to clear the sunroof pop up action, so will be a bit of work, step stool might help perhaps. Might put some padding on your roof and see if she can lift the bike up there as a dry run before considering the roof rack version.
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  #6  
Old 05-17-2015, 01:25 PM
wingless wingless is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingless View Post
This topic shows my Invisihitch installation on my 2015 X3.

It includes a 2" square receiver for a bike rack carrier.

This is a very good system that I do not hesitate to recommend.
The low-cost option is to install a visible 2" square receiver hitch w/o an OEM trailer hitch electronic wiring module, like these Curt and Draw-Tite hitches. This might be sufficient for only using a bike rack.

The BMW and the Invisihitch both use BMW OEM trailer electronic modules and both require several hours of expert programming to inform all the other modules about this new module.

Last edited by wingless; 05-17-2015 at 01:27 PM.
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  #7  
Old 05-19-2015, 07:44 AM
HikerToo HikerToo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingless View Post
The low-cost option is to install a visible 2" square receiver hitch w/o an OEM trailer hitch electronic wiring module, like these Curt and Draw-Tite hitches. This might be sufficient for only using a bike rack.

The BMW and the Invisihitch both use BMW OEM trailer electronic modules and both require several hours of expert programming to inform all the other modules about this new module.
Just for bikes I would do the Curt or Draw-tie with no electronics, you still may want someone to do that for you.
We had that on our Murano
On our 2012 X3 we just got, bit the bullet and went OEM so I could trailer my motorcycle with proper electronics...and of course carry our bikes.

Found the oem hitch from BMW dealer on eBay for $550
local dealer installed for about $500
We also like to carry bikes on top, but no way my wife could do that by herself.
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  #8  
Old 05-19-2015, 08:08 AM
HikerToo HikerToo is offline
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and have the Curt hitch on my 328i with no wires, installed myself in less than 2 hours, did not want to try the X3 though.
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  #9  
Old 05-19-2015, 02:12 PM
jellyroll2 jellyroll2 is offline
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Invisihitch programing is remote and no cost now, I have not had that done yet. They even provide the cable to connect your car to your laptop. You will need wireless access for the laptop during programing. I suspect you will want the programing so you can prevent the rear hatch from opening with the bike rack on. To do that, once programmed you would plug in a 7 pin adaptor which your modify with load resistors (instructions are in if I remember the X5 threads under invisihitch) or buy one already made for German cars such as this: http://www.etrailer.com/Wiring/Tow-Ready/TR20141.html. I followed instructions for the install posted by Wingless which were excellent, but it took me a very long time. No way I could do it for the first time in the 3 hours invisihitch said a body shop would take. I agree with Wingless that the product is excellent. My only nitpick is that it is difficult to get the protective cap off the lock cylinder each time you install or remove the reciever, there is no good surface to grab on that cap. I like that the hitch maintains the rear collision integrity of the car, so the car absorbs a rear end collision as designed I also like the lifetime warranty. It is pricy.
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  #10  
Old 05-20-2015, 01:41 PM
tuatua tuatua is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HikerToo View Post
Just for bikes I would do the Curt or Draw-tie with no electronics, you still may want someone to do that for you.
Agree. A friend and I installed the Curt hitch on our 2015 X3 in 3 hours. Didn't do any coding, so with the bike rack installed the parking sensor beeps when in reverse. Doesn't effect the camera; I can see through the bikes when backing.

The hitch instructions say a professional can do the install in 1.5 hours so, if you wanted a body shop to do the install for you, I wouldn't think it would be that expensive.
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  #11  
Old 05-24-2015, 07:01 AM
invisihitch invisihitch is offline
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The invisihitch is available in a "Rack-Only" package also, which is considerably less expensive than the invisihitch full tow package because it does not include any electrics, programming, or ballmount for towing. At $419, the invisihitch Rack-Only package is priced a bit above the permanently-visible hitches from Curt/Reese/Drawtite, but it completely preserves the aesthetics of your X3. Plus, it properly engages the rear crumple zones of the X3 in the event of a rear-end collision. So you may have some price/feature trade-offs to consider, but $1400 for the OEM hitch is probably not where you want to go just to support a bike rack.

Daryl
sales@invisihitch.com

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  #12  
Old 05-25-2015, 01:19 PM
Lotus99 Lotus99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by invisihitch View Post
The invisihitch is available in a "Rack-Only" package also, which is considerably less expensive than the invisihitch full tow package because it does not include any electrics, programming, or ballmount for towing. At $419, the invisihitch Rack-Only package is priced a bit above the permanently-visible hitches from Curt/Reese/Drawtite, but it completely preserves the aesthetics of your X3. Plus, it properly engages the rear crumple zones of the X3 in the event of a rear-end collision. So you may have some price/feature trade-offs to consider, but $1400 for the OEM hitch is probably not where you want to go just to support a bike rack.

Daryl
sales@invisihitch.com

Hi, 3 questions:

1 - isn't the bike rack only version $575, as per this link?

http://execuhitch.com/tow-hitches/bm...nly-hitch.html

2 - Also, what's the class rating on it, and the tongue weight?

The Curt is a Class III with Towing Capacity:
350 Pound Tongue Weight
3500 Pound Towing

3 - Lastly, if buying the bike rack only version, can one buy the electrics later and add it, if you decide to tow a trailer?
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  #13  
Old 05-25-2015, 03:44 PM
invisihitch invisihitch is offline
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1. The $419 price that I posted is correct. The website has not been updated to reflect the lower pricing.

2. Our hitch is the only Class III hitch for the X3 in North America. Specifically, we support the full 5,500 lb towing capacity of the X3 (vehicle tow rating per BMW AG). The competing hitch that you mentioned is a Class II hitch.

3. Yes, you can upgrade later from our Rack-Only configuration to the full towing package by adding the wiring harness and ball mount.

Cheers,
Daryl
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  #14  
Old 05-26-2015, 10:15 AM
burjoes burjoes is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by invisihitch View Post
1. The $419 price that I posted is correct. The website has not been updated to reflect the lower pricing.

2. Our hitch is the only Class III hitch for the X3 in North America. Specifically, we support the full 5,500 lb towing capacity of the X3 (vehicle tow rating per BMW AG). The competing hitch that you mentioned is a Class II hitch.

3. Yes, you can upgrade later from our Rack-Only configuration to the full towing package by adding the wiring harness and ball mount.

Cheers,
Daryl
Hi Daryl - thank you for commenting on this. I was just being asked, again, by my wife about what "we" are doing about getting her a tow hitch for a bike rack!

I would like to order the $419 system you mentioned. Can you provide a custom link or coupon code to make it happen? I'm ready to order today.

Thanks again
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  #15  
Old 05-26-2015, 11:29 AM
invisihitch invisihitch is offline
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I should have included this in my earlier post: Until the website gets updated, to order at the prices I posted here you will need to phone in your order. And it wouldn't hurt to mention that you saw the pricing I posted on bimmerfest. Our phone number is (678) 400-0121, and the office is open Mon-Fri 8am-5pm Eastern.

Daryl
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  #16  
Old 05-26-2015, 12:49 PM
duamel duamel is online now
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Jump on this. I just got mine last week and am very happy (paid website prices)

Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
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  #17  
Old 05-26-2015, 12:50 PM
burjoes burjoes is offline
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thanks. what do you make of the $71 shipping? I checked fedex.com and it's $28 for a 55 pound box from there to here.
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  #18  
Old 05-26-2015, 04:12 PM
invisihitch invisihitch is offline
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The carriers all use what they call "dimension weight" on oversize boxes, which means once you exceed their standard box sizes the rate gets based on how much of their limited space you use up on their truck, not on the actual weight of the box.
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  #19  
Old 05-26-2015, 05:26 PM
HikerToo HikerToo is offline
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http://www.etrailer.com/hitch-2014_BMW_X3.htm
$133 shipped, but you would still need to pay someone a few hours to install it, unless you plan on doing th 1/2 day job yourself.
http://www.amazon.com/Curt-13107-Cla...014%3Abmw%3Ax3
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Last edited by HikerToo; 05-27-2015 at 03:04 AM.
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  #20  
Old 05-27-2015, 11:53 PM
Toast. Toast. is offline
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Daryl -
My local shop near los angeles quoted $200 for a hitch install.
Would install on invisi hitch be more difficult/require more time then a normal hitch install?

Thanks in advance, I think we spoke on the phone earlier this week and i am very close to getting one.

HikerToo
FYI - I spoke with etrailer and they recommended there brand of hitch said it was very similar to drawtite's hitch only cheaper.
I believe they offered free shipping on orders over $99.
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  #21  
Old 05-28-2015, 05:39 AM
invisihitch invisihitch is offline
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To the best of my knowledge, all X3 hitches on the market require removal/replacement of the rear bumper cover. So the installation process is quite similar, regardless of the hitch. I am not familiar with your local labor rates, but the job should take 1 hour (perhaps 2 hours if the shop is using "book time" or if it does this particular task very infrequently).

As for which hitch to buy, it is a price/feature trade-off decision:

Invisihitch is the OE hitch for BMW in other regions outside of North America (we did not win the bidding war for BMW's North-American business), so we meet certain standards that aftermarket hitches do not. Specifically,

1. The dealer hitch and the invisihitch are the only hitches for the X3 that properly preserve the rear crumple zones of the vehicle. Hitches absolutely must do this to be considered by BMW as an OE hitch. This may be critically important to you in the event of a rear-end collision.

2. The dealer hitch and the invisihitch are the only hitches for the X3 that are available with the OEM tow harness. BMW does not sell this harness as a separate part, so it cannot be paired with less expensive, non-compliant aftermarket hitches. Aftermarket hitches are available only with their own harnesses, all of which splice into the BMW wiring.

3. The invisihitch is the only Class III hitch available for the X3 in North America.

If you are only adding a bike rack, then you don't need a tow harness or Class III towing capacity. In that case, if you are willing to sacrifice your rear crumple zones and if you don't mind permanently seeing the hitch, there are less expensive alternatives. You will find advocates for such alternatives in these forums and elsewhere. I try not to argue with them. I believe each person should make their own price/feature trade-off decision based on their own situation and preferences. I just want you to know what features you are trading off.
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  #22  
Old 05-29-2015, 05:04 AM
burjoes burjoes is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by invisihitch View Post
The carriers all use what they call "dimension weight" on oversize boxes, which means once you exceed their standard box sizes the rate gets based on how much of their limited space you use up on their truck, not on the actual weight of the box.
I received the box today. It is 40" x 11" x 8" and weighs 45 pounds. I logged in to Fedex and the rate is $33.69 from Execuhitch to my home, including $500 insurance. So the $71 is more than double the actual shipping price.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.
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  #23  
Old 05-29-2015, 07:29 AM
invisihitch invisihitch is offline
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I can tell you that we do not randomly upcharge on freight. We generally use one size box for all our hitches and it accommodates our largest hitch. As a consequence, we ship a lot of air space on our smaller hitches and we get charged "dimensional weight" accordingly by the carriers. We also insure shipments to our published retail pricing.

I post heavily discounted pricing to the bimmerfest community (in this case $156 lower than our published pricing). It also sounds like your shipment went out in a smaller box.

I do wish you had either called our office or reached out to me directly if you were dissatisfied in any way after you placed your order. We've got a stellar reputation for customer service. My direct email appears in my signature below should you wish to contact me.

Daryl
daryl@invisihitch.com

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  #24  
Old 05-30-2015, 06:00 PM
burjoes burjoes is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by invisihitch View Post
I can tell you that we do not randomly upcharge on freight. We generally use one size box for all our hitches and it accommodates our largest hitch. As a consequence, we ship a lot of air space on our smaller hitches and we get charged "dimensional weight" accordingly by the carriers. We also insure shipments to our published retail pricing.

I post heavily discounted pricing to the bimmerfest community (in this case $156 lower than our published pricing). It also sounds like your shipment went out in a smaller box.

I do wish you had either called our office or reached out to me directly if you were dissatisfied in any way after you placed your order. We've got a stellar reputation for customer service. My direct email appears in my signature below should you wish to contact me.

Daryl
daryl@invisihitch.com

Daryl - as soon as I hung up with the person on the phone placing the order, I looked on your website for a contact email to discuss the high shipping cost. There was none, so I used the form at http://execuhitch.com/tow-hitches/co...xecuhitch.html. I did not hear back from anyone, so I commented here.

Regarding discounted pricing - you said that new pricing had not yet made it to your website, so I had no reason to think that the forum pricing was discounted.

I'm open to any other comments, but this is a world of transparent customer service, and had I emailed you privately, I still would have written about it here. I would appreciate someone looking into the overcharge for the shipping.

I am working on the install now, and looking forward to the end result. My wife is very pleased about the surprise box with her new trailer hitch. So I'm not all sour grapes here, just disappointed in a very high shipping charge.
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  #25  
Old 05-31-2015, 04:55 PM
HikerToo HikerToo is offline
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Geez, Burjoes, give them a break, either order and deal with it or move on and order form someone else, no need to drag them through a forum because you don't like their shipping rates...many companies charge more than what I think is fair...
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