Originally Posted by The X Men
I echo others in saying that, unless you are on a close track, you will not notice the performance difference between a AWD and RWD.
I continue to be surprised with this statement. I can easily feel if any car is carrying an extra 300 pounds and has increased understeer as does the XDrive. The difference in handling between RWD and XDrive is pronounced, easily noticeable in day to day driving.
Keep in mind the BMW AWD system is fairly unsophisticated, defaults to 40% front/50% rear (read, increase understeer at all times) and has open differentials front and rear. The system does not integrate torque vector steering or even an LSD. Thus, it simply cannot
improve handling - contrary to claims here. (Unless you are one of the few who actually believes front wheel drive improves handling over RWD, asserting the nonsense that FWD "pulls" the car through turns.
XDrive is great for straightline movement/acceleration on slippery surfaces and should be purchased by those more comfortable with such a system in the winter. It is otherwise extra weight, lesser handling, increased cost.