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      11-20-2012, 02:14 PM   #1
dude987
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2013 335i xDrive MSport Pkg Review

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Finally got past the break in mode and got 4,000 km (2,500 mi) on bimmer. It came with the 18 Bridgestone Potenza S001 on the 400M mixed wheels. Recently swapped out the summer tires for a A/S non-RFT 18 Bridgestone Potenza RE970AS Pole Position on 18x8 Enkei Racing PF01 on all four wheels. The A/S wheel/tire combo appears to be about 6 lbs lighter per wheel for a total of 24 lbs less then the OEM wheels.

So, I finally took the bimmer out to the Black Forrest and stretched its legs on parts of the autobahn without speed limits and somewhat pushed the limits of performance. Some initial thoughts.

It was difficult to detect any noticeable difference between comfort and sport suspension during casual city driving in traffic. However when pushed beyond 120 mph on the autobahn, there was definitely some floating and wallowing in comfort mode. There was a clear sense of the chassis stiffening up in sport mode during high speeds. I could also feel the electronic steering tighten up during high speed driving. It felt planted, stable, and beefy.

The sport suspension handled like it was on rails when hitting it hard in the twisties of the Black Forrest. The chassis remained flat without any noticeable plowing and took the curves like it was on rails.

After a day of hard aggressive driving, the mileage was a decent 22.9 mpg. Not bad for unleashing its potential in both the twisties and the autobahn. I was averaging a little over 24 mph during the break-in period in city driving. Im hoping it will only improve as the bimmer continues to break in and get more efficient.

I went with the 18 wheels for two reasons. The previous 330i had RFTs and the suspension was a bit on the harsh side. The combination of this experience and knowing that 19 was more susceptible to roadside hazards, I decided to go with the 18s. However in all honesty, the suspension on the 18s with adaptive suspension is a bit on the soft side relative to my preference. Had I know this ahead of time, I probably would have opted for the 19s. The 330i was too harsh and the 335i is a bit too soft. The 19s may have been better for my personal preference.

The 330i had leatherette and the 335i has Dakota leather. In all honesty, the leatherette was mildly discomforting with clammy moisture build up between skin and seat. The Dakota is much softer, comfortable, and dry. It was well worth the additional cost. Very satisfied with leather and will never go back to leatherette.

The linear power delivery and acceleration from the xDrive is phenomenal. It hunkers down, grips the road, and catapults down the road like theres no tomorrow. Given the same tires, my gut instinct says that it will out perform a Audi S4 hands down.

The combination of extreme sport handling mixed genuine luxury touring capability is what really sets this car apart from so many others. It works great as a daily driver to and from work while thoroughly delivering on sport performance for the weekend sporting enthusiast.
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      11-20-2012, 02:39 PM   #2
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Congrats, and thanks for the review!

Just wondering, but I imagine both comfort and sport modes are equally stable from a road-safety perspective but simply feel different to the driver. My ride is still sitting in Bremerhaven so comments appreciated.

I've actually found the 18s to be incredibly nimble in comparison to 19s and was glad you got them. I hunted a good bit in test drives but didn't find a place that I favored the 19s.

I loaded up a 335 M Sport, but left off the leather on purpose. I may spent ~$2K+ US for aftermarket leather, which is obviously more than BMW charges for dakota but I'm going to shoot for something thicker and different. May be stupid money, may be a godsend, to each his own.

Jealous of ur awesome break in trip!

Pics for chrisake....
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      11-20-2012, 03:01 PM   #3
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Thanks for the great review. I've been looking to get people impression on the 335xi. I've been tempted to go with the 335xi over the 335i for winter driveability but I'm worried about the lack of aftermarket suspension upgrades for the 335xi.
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      11-20-2012, 03:10 PM   #4
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Would ALWAYS go BMW xDrive over anything else. BMW has absolutely NAILED all wheel drive, like nobody else.

If I'm in snow or ice 4-5- times a year--and that happens when I'm not looking...it's a godsend even WITHOUT the extra speed you get and all-around handing in any weather.

xDrive is an extremely underrated HUGE boost to the driving experience IMO, including handling, speed and more.

Folks will challenge this post, but I've drive both ad nauseum and xDrive rules in almost situations IMO. Worth the extra $$.

Last edited by Ron Scott; 11-20-2012 at 03:15 PM.
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      11-20-2012, 03:58 PM   #5
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I was extremely impressed with how good the 19" RFT's were in terms of ride comfort. Other than the 1 pothole that sent a bone curdling chill through my spine (wheels were fine) they felt much more stable than the 18" winter non RFT's I threw on.
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      11-20-2012, 04:33 PM   #6
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4000 km break-in???? Why so long? Manual says 2K km break-in? I'm at 1700 kms and can hardly wait until I hit the 2K mark. Definitely cannot wait until 4k??!!!!????
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      11-20-2012, 04:43 PM   #7
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Great Review. Congrats on the ride.

My 2 cents ... If the ride height wasn't sooooo high on the X-Drive, I probably would have considered it ... but honestly, not a fan by the asthetic stance of the XDrive. If BMW could finally figure out a way to pack in XDrive w/ same ride height as the M Sport Suspension, I would be sold. Also, I've also found all wheel drive less "fun" and "exciting". Can't really put my finger on it, but I've driven C350 4Matic, Infiniti G37x, S4, and 335i X Drive ... and they all felt a bit "meeeehhh". Out of the bunch, definitely feel the XDrive is the clear winner, but found the 335i non-xdrive a much more exhilerating experince.

I'm going to add on the M Performance Pack (once it finally gets released) to make up for any performance "gains" that Xdrive has over non-Xdrive from a dead stop. This will run me approx $2-2.5Km same price as the XDrive Option. Also, the performance/traction gains of AWD are only realized off the line (cold stop). Once in motion, RWD will typically take AWD (given weight savings, etc).
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      11-20-2012, 04:50 PM   #8
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I've owned both RWD and AWD cars, and am a HUGE fan of AWD. After test driving a bunch of different F30s I've got a 335i xDrive 6MT with DHP on the boat from Germany now.

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      11-20-2012, 05:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Scott View Post
Would ALWAYS go BMW xDrive over anything else. BMW has absolutely NAILED all wheel drive, like nobody else.

If I'm in snow or ice 4-5- times a year--and that happens when I'm not looking...it's a godsend even WITHOUT the extra speed you get and all-around handing in any weather.

xDrive is an extremely underrated HUGE boost to the driving experience IMO, including handling, speed and more.

Folks will challenge this post, but I've drive both ad nauseum and xDrive rules in almost situations IMO. Worth the extra $$.
My '10 E90 M-Sport 335i was an xDrive. I loved it. The car made me feel very comfortable in inclement weather conditions.

That being said, the steering on my RWD F30 M-Sport 335i is unquestionably better. Far less prone to understeer. My old E90 xDrive really had a tendency to push wide into corners under hard acceleration.
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      11-20-2012, 09:14 PM   #10
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2013 F30 335i xDrive pics

On a couple occasions, I accelerated hard trying to overtake a car about a hundred yards in front of me on a long (about a quarter mile long) autobahn entry ramp. The bimmer went about its hard acceleration in a luxury business like fashion with the subdued sound of a somewhat distant exhaust burble. For a couple seconds, it felt like it was taking a long time to overtake the car in front of me. Then in the next instant before I knew it, I was blowing past that car like it was standing still and I was still accelerating hard going in excess of 100 mph. It doesn't have that raw visceral edge like a Porsche Cayman that howls and screams that the motor is working hard. The bimmer will out perform a Cayman in straight line acceleration in a subdued business like manner and do so without breaking a sweat or conveying that visceral edge of a wailing motor. Not that one is better or worse then the other. Just some different mannerisms between two different car types.
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      11-20-2012, 09:26 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soolman32 View Post
I've been tempted to go with the 335xi over the 335i for winter driveability but I'm worried about the lack of aftermarket suspension upgrades for the 335xi.
Agreed. Definitely limited with suspension upgrades for the xDrive. Would recommend staying with the rwd for suspension upgrades.

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Originally Posted by martinf79 View Post
4000 km break-in???? Why so long? Manual says 2K km break-in? I'm at 1700 kms and can hardly wait until I hit the 2K mark. Definitely cannot wait until 4k??!!!!????
Good point. Just been busy with work and life's other distractions. On the other hand, I did want to go easy on the break in period and let it juice up nice and easy.
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      11-20-2012, 11:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dude987 View Post
Finally got past the break in mode and got 4,000 km (2,500 mi) on bimmer. It came with the 18 Bridgestone Potenza S001 on the 400M mixed wheels. Recently swapped out the summer tires for a A/S non-RFT 18 Bridgestone Potenza RE970AS Pole Position on 18x8 Enkei Racing PF01 on all four wheels. The A/S wheel/tire combo appears to be about 6 lbs lighter per wheel for a total of 24 lbs less then the OEM wheels.
Thanks for the review.

I just had a set of RE970's installed at the TireRack last Friday.
Seems you like them too.

The S001's are actually a very good riding RFT and fairly quiet.
After 100 miles the new shoes have broken in better.
The cabin is actually a bit quieter than with the S001's, which were already quiet.
The steering response with the 970's is very nice. Response feels quicker, but it makes the 335i feel lighter up front more like the 328i, me likey.
Very positive with the new AS tires so far.

There are some negatives. They flat spot over night and after sitting all day at work, and it takes a few miles for them to round out. Do you feel that with your new tires too?
Also, these are heavy tires compared to some of the other UHP AS tires, and I can feel it on some bumps.
I was hoping for a bit better bump cushion over the RFT's. The new AS tires do take a bit of the bang off bumps compared to the RFT's, but not as much as the Conti DWS did. But then the RFT's on my 135i were brutal on bumps, very brutal. The S001's are not nearly as bad.

TireRacks testing showed the RE970's as losing 1mpg compared to the other UHP AS tires they went up against. But I haven't noticed any MPG loss yet. PSI is at stock, but I'll be bumping them up to the high speed PSI soon. I wanted to try the standard pressures first.

The over all grip of these AS tires is amazing. As good as the S001's are, the 970's feel like they have a touch better grip, and braking feels shorter too. VERY suprising considering the S001's are rated as 'max performance' summer tires.
All season technology has really improved over the years. The RE970's are one of the newest UHP AS tires in the market.

I'm sure you'll fair better in the winter with Xdrive than I will with RWD.
Let us know how they work out in the winter.

BTW, I too went with the 18's. Major reason was that I got to test drive a 335i sport with the 19's and the ride wasn't really firmer, it was just harsher. I think you made the right choice.
Plus, I prefer the look of the 18's as I like more of a 5 spoke design, easier to clean too, especially with the Msport's more aggressive, read DUSTER, design.
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      11-21-2012, 09:51 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by ybbiz34 View Post
My '10 E90 M-Sport 335i was an xDrive. I loved it. The car made me feel very comfortable in inclement weather conditions.

That being said, the steering on my RWD F30 M-Sport 335i is unquestionably better. Far less prone to understeer. My old E90 xDrive really had a tendency to push wide into corners under hard acceleration.
Have you had a chance to drive an F30 335i xDrive and compare that to your RWD F30?

Thanks
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      11-21-2012, 10:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dude987 View Post
.....
Recently swapped out the summer tires for a A/S non-RFT 18” Bridgestone Potenza RE970AS Pole Position on 18x8 Enkei Racing PF01 on all four wheels.....
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPM90 View Post
..... I just had a set of RE970's installed at the TireRack last Friday. Seems you like them too.....
FWIW,
I have a 335i xDrive Sportline with 18x8 wheels at all four corners. I opted for Summer Performance Tires so I would get the increased top speed limiter, and my car came with Goodyear Efficient Grip Y speed rated tires.

I decided to replace the summer tires with ultra high performance all seasons. Considered the RE970AS in OEM 225/45-18 size, but decided to stay with Run Flats so I instead got the Run Flat version of the RE960AS tires which have a W speed rating. Had to go to a 245/40-18 size, as the 960 RFTs did not come in the OEM size, but they fit well and am very happy with them.

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      11-21-2012, 11:51 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RPM90 View Post
I'm sure you'll fair better in the winter with Xdrive than I will with RWD.

Plus, I prefer the look of the 18's as I like more of a 5 spoke design, easier to clean too, especially with the Msport's more aggressive, read DUSTER, design.
I have been driving RWD BMWs for almost 30 years, switching to proper snow tires for the winter. Never been stuck in snow ! For the winter, I usually place one or two bags of "play sand" (double bagged) in the trunk for some extra rear end weight.
It's far cheaper than Xdrive !

As for your comments on the Style 400- 18" wheels, me too !
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      11-21-2012, 11:57 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RPM90 View Post
There are some negatives. They flat spot over night and after sitting all day at work, and it takes a few miles for them to round out. Do you feel that with your new tires too?

Plus, I prefer the look of the 18's as I like more of a 5 spoke design, easier to clean too, especially with the Msport's more aggressive, read DUSTER, design.
So far I have not experienced any flat spots. It sat idle for over a month while I was out of town and still did not experience any flat spots that I'm aware of. But then again, maybe I'm just not attuned to the difference.

Having a full appreciation of the BMW brake dust from the previous 330i, the ability to have easy access to the barrels and cleaning the brake dust was definitely a consideration for going with the 5 spoke 18" wheels.
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      11-21-2012, 05:52 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Have you had a chance to drive an F30 335i xDrive and compare that to your RWD F30?

Thanks
Bruce
I have not Bruce. However, I think I may have an opportunity to do so in the near future.
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      11-22-2012, 06:02 PM   #18
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Long Road Trip Review

Took my first long road trip with the bimmer from Stuttgart to Prague (about a 5-6 hour drive). It was a real opportunity to determine it's road worthy capabilities. Fortunately it was a weekday and as such the autobahn was not overly congested with open roads most of the way. Cruising 80-100 mph was easy breezy gliding for the bimmer. No stress easy going. It felt like the sweet spot and could cruise all day long without any stress on the motor. It was picking up the paces and working moderately harder at about 120 mph and definitely earning it's money at 150 mph.

The roll-on acceleration from 90 mph to 150 mph (rather roll-on acceleration from any speed really) is just unbelievably sweet. The distant wail of the exhaust burble and leaving ornery competing cars in the dust was just amazing. On a couple occasions with no cars in front, I took it to the limit and the cars behind me just disappeared from my rear view mirror (this on a long straight stretch). A couple times other similar performance brand cars would test their performance limits and kind of egg me on on the autobahn. The bimmer just left them in the dust in a humiliating way. It was no contest. All I can say is "WOW".

The virtues of variable assist steering truly comes into play when driving at higher limits. The ease, stability, and precision during high speed driving is just out of this world. The ease and relaxation of driving at 120 mph was just as relaxed and pleasant as going 60 mph. No nervous jitters, just easy peasy and loping along at 120 mph as if you were cruising down a boulevard.

I adjusted the sports seat with the extended leg support to hold my thighs. The front edge of the seat was up as far as it would go and the back edge of the seat was down all the way. The back rest was tilted more towards vertical but not uncomfortably so. It was so comfortable that after driving 6 hours, I could easily have driven another 6 hours without any problems.

I would be remiss it I didn't mention the variable sport suspension is a class act. The previous 330i would float and wallow with jittery steering during high speed maneuvers. This thing just felt planted like it was on rails all the way to the limits. I believe the DHP probably gives it that high performance edge for the true sporting enthusiast.

Well the good news is that this bimmer has in many ways exceeded my expectations. I was somewhat skeptical that I would be impressed much less enthralled with the bimmer's overall performance especially coming from a Porsche Cayman. But I gotta say, it has a unique character all it's own and I'm more then impressed with the overall results so far.

Unfortunately there is a downside to all this exceptional performance. It will be difficult at best to unleash it's true potential and utilize (unleash) it's full potential in the states. It's just a sad reality. I blew past a Policia van doing 130 mph on the autobahn while it was chugging along at 80 mph.

Unless you have experienced sustained high speeds, pushing the limits at whim, leaving other performance cars in the dust, and driving on an open stretch of German engineered highway designed for sustained high performance driving, you'll never really know the true capabilities of your bimmer. It is a true luxury GT in every sense of the word.

Can you imagine doing 60 mph on the highway for sustained periods in a masterpiece? It's just too painful to imagine.

Last edited by dude987; 11-22-2012 at 06:09 PM.
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      11-25-2012, 10:59 AM   #19
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Thanks for the review. Very nice!

I also just ordered 2013 335i xDrive. It will be built in South Africa. The long wait has started.
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      11-25-2012, 03:42 PM   #20
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Thanks for the wonderful review. Makes me feel good to know mine is just a month out. I'm in the Stuttgart area as well, and I can't wait to take it on its first road trip.

I went with the 18"/All-Seasons + xDrive as well. Given what everyone says about the weather here, it seemed as though that would be the way to go once the snow hits.
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      11-26-2012, 02:42 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Scott
Would ALWAYS go BMW xDrive over anything else. BMW has absolutely NAILED all wheel drive, like nobody else.

If I'm in snow or ice 4-5- times a year--and that happens when I'm not looking...it's a godsend even WITHOUT the extra speed you get and all-around handing in any weather.

xDrive is an extremely underrated HUGE boost to the driving experience IMO, including handling, speed and more.

Folks will challenge this post, but I've drive both ad nauseum and xDrive rules in almost situations IMO. Worth the extra $$.
Thats because you are in snow. Rwd>awd anywhere else.
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      01-01-2013, 08:36 AM   #22
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xDrivers,


Can anyone specifically outline (or post informative links) what exactly it is that the Dynamic Handling Package does to improve the ride quality/handling/driving experience on xDrive cars VS non-DHP xDrive?


Also, is it true that xDrive cars are devoid of any sport suspension components? Does the DHP add any/some sport components to xDrive vehicles?


I keep hearing that DHP on xDrive cars improves the ride significantly, but have not heard any specific explanations or details.


Thanks.
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