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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know it varies a lot, but I'd like an idea. By brother owned the car for 18K miles, and supposedly babied it. Most of those miles were highway. SInce the car is underpowered (it's the heavy 323 cabrio), I believe him.
I've put almost 2K miles, and been very easy on the clutch. I'd be crazy to race anybody on this thing anyway. I just enjoy the ride.

So what's the current mileage on your clutch? Ever replaced it? Please include your average kind of driving: normal, moderate, or hard.

Thanks.

JC
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You're probably right getrag and ZF only make the transmissions, but they probably have different clutches as well. 328/330s got to be beefier. I'd love to have the same clutch as the other more expensive cars, but that's unusual for manufacturers to give "freebies" like that. Does anybody know for sure?

Hey, I'd still like to know your mileage on clutches so far.
 

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Sachs makes the OEM clutch discs. ZF makes the 328/330 AND the steptronic transmissions while Getrag makes the 323/325 manual transmission.

I've got ~45,000 miles on my clutch, about 90% highway driving although for 6+ month it was spent in heavy L.A. rush hour traffic. I am moderately aggressive, with the average shiftpoint between 3,500 RPM and 4,000 RPM, and on average take my car all the way up to redline once a week. I have done several casual clutch dumps at 3,000 RPM with minimum wheel spin. I've done one track school, and one Malibu Canyon run.

I think if I take my clutch disc apart now, I'd guess I would still have over 75% of the pressure plate left, if not more. The clutch feels as solid as the day I picked up the car.
 

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If the replacement of a clutch wasn't so labour-intensive, I'd love to put in one with a much higher clamping force that could take some serious abuse. Something that would live through multiple hard launches daily. Then again, I think worrying about the clutch life keeps my acceleration levels in check. :confused:

Oh and on-topic, I have 40-something thousand KM's on my clutch. I should really learn to memorize the odometer for threads like this. :banghead:
 

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xi's also get a ZF transmission, but not the same model as 328/330 i/Ci's...

The HACK said:
Sachs makes the OEM clutch discs. ZF makes the 328/330 AND the steptronic transmissions while Getrag makes the 323/325 manual transmission.

I've got ~45,000 miles on my clutch, about 90% highway driving although for 6+ month it was spent in heavy L.A. rush hour traffic. I am moderately aggressive, with the average shiftpoint between 3,500 RPM and 4,000 RPM, and on average take my car all the way up to redline once a week. I have done several casual clutch dumps at 3,000 RPM with minimum wheel spin. I've done one track school, and one Malibu Canyon run.

I think if I take my clutch disc apart now, I'd guess I would still have over 75% of the pressure plate left, if not more. The clutch feels as solid as the day I picked up the car.
 

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I have a 2000 323i and drive it really hard. Redline all the time... etc. It has 54,000 miles on it and the clutch and engine have never felt better... it really does get better every day. Too bad I'm turning it in this week to pick up my 330i. If I didn't want that 330i so bad I would keep my 323i forever....
 

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Mystikal said:
If the replacement of a clutch wasn't so labour-intensive, I'd love to put in one with a much higher clamping force that could take some serious abuse. Something that would live through multiple hard launches daily. Then again, I think worrying about the clutch life keeps my acceleration levels in check. :confused:
All ya' gotta do is take out the transmission. Easy DIY :D
 

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When my entire driveline and rear axle was removed at 27K miles, the clutch looked brand new. But, according to technicians and NA field reps the clutch will show very little wear before failure. BMW clutches tend to explode or start slipping badly to show replacement, they don't degrade slowly. That's what they said, and that's what I have experienced.
 

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the e46 clutch was said to be not as heavy duty as the e36 clutch. also there were some people that fried thier clutches and flywheel from a few hard launches. so don't do'em.
 

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My clutch was fried at 2.2K miles under circumstances that involved a new driver, a steep hill and a 3rd gear launch. I wasn't there for it. :p

I'm honestly not sure what happened, because my current clutch has tolerated many VERY hard launches and a great deal of general abuse. (i.e. driven by someone looking for an excuse to upgrade it. :p)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Question to Hack.

Thanks for all the great responses.
I'm glad to hear BMW clutches are well put together. Ultra expensive clutch replacements was what kept me from manual transmissions, but I'm glad it should last a long time with proper care. Probably not as long as an automatic tranny,which shuold last over 100K miles, but not as bad as I thought.

Somebody mentioned clutches sometimes failing without showing much wear. That's probably due to the springs on the pressure plate losing strenght (and it makes sense, right?). It'd be nice to know how long they should last, since it seems not to be related to mileage. But if that's the case, how about valve springs?

Hey Hack, so the clutch on all 3's is the same? How about the M3?

Thanks.
 

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the clutch changes based on engine size. The 323/325 have a different clutch than the 328/330. I'm 99% certain the M3 has a better clutch than the 330s.
The real grey area is what clutch the 325xi has. :p It has a bunch of equipment that does not normally appear in a 325. (ZF transmission, possibly a 5 series, or partly 5 series drivetrain based on the existence of the CDV.)
 

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Re: Question to Hack.

JuanCarlos said:


...snip...
Somebody mentioned clutches sometimes failing without showing much wear. That's probably due to the springs on the pressure plate losing strenght (and it makes sense, right?). It'd be nice to know how long they should last, since it seems not to be related to mileage. But if that's the case, how about valve springs?

...snip...
A common failure item on BMW clutchs is not the clutch disc itself but the something-something bearing (sorry, early morning, no coffee, and a very, very sore neck). Also, the spring that pushes apart the pressure plate will wear quicker, if you tend to keep your foot clutched in while stopped at a light.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Great info guys, but isn't unbelievable that we'd have to fork out hundreds of bucks prematurely for a $10 bearing? It's a common problem on other brands as well, but I'd think BMW being the "king" of manual cars was different.

For the record, I never keep the clutch in at stoplights,and also don't use the clutch when stopping: just wait until the rpm's are at idle level and push the stick to neutral from whatever speed it's in (I've always done this, so I'm used to it).

Later guys.

JC
 
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