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      03-15-2011, 11:49 AM   #1
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Steering

I know there is a lot on the main forum but has anybody in the UK have a solution to a need for constant steering corrections when travelling on a motorway. I have the latest software update which may have improved things a bit although dealer had told me this only fixed a handbrake issue.
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      03-15-2011, 03:18 PM   #2
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I've just done a trip from Blackpool back to Leeds on the motorway and didn't notice too much when I was driving on the motorway until the wind blew the car from the side, it felt like the car was really light in weight and had to oversteer quite alot to keep it going straight. The car must be heavier than the 3 coupe that I have just got rid of and that didn't have any trouble.
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      06-23-2011, 02:31 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adiparker View Post
I've just done a trip from Blackpool back to Leeds on the motorway and didn't notice too much when I was driving on the motorway until the wind blew the car from the side, it felt like the car was really light in weight and had to oversteer quite alot to keep it going straight. The car must be heavier than the 3 coupe that I have just got rid of and that didn't have any trouble.
+1
Despite the fantastic car in every other respect, I feel I can never "relax" in my F10, constant micro steering corrections required and anticipation of a side wind blowing the car off course.... Feels like a van instead of a car.

I was driving a transit when my son was moving house at weekend and it felt more comfortable in side winds than my F10.

Disappointed greatly with this aspect of the car. Feels like "ice driving"
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      06-23-2011, 03:02 AM   #4
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Myself & Jon D have commented on this many times

I can't see a software correction helping - the whole point of the Efficient Dynamics Electric Power Steering is that it's off at motorway speeds.

I'm of the opinion that the geometry has been set to minimise rolling resistance and this is the issue. Not enough caster (?)
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      06-23-2011, 07:09 AM   #5
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This is clearly not a pervasive issue. I for one have no such problem and if this was affecting the majority of people there would be a major outcry I would think.

So with that in mind, there is clearly some difference between those cars that have the problem and those that don't. Yeah I know I am stating the obvious but hang in there.......

I cannot believe therefore that the root cause would not by now be understood by BMW. I expect that they would have a detailed database of every component on every car built and could readily identifty commonalities between those cars reported as affected. On that note......is everyone with the issue going back to their dealer to complain???

So if I believe that they know the cause, then I would extrapolate that the solution is not straightforward or it would be implemented. A software fix it probably is not. Is it more likely that there was a component from a different supplier or a certain batch that causes this issue? As it's not a life threatening safety matter I doubt they are obligated to do it. As it's a relatively low subset of people experiencing it (as opposed to every single magazine review shouting about it) perhaps the strategy is to sit tight and ignore the small percentage of affected owners.

Or maybe I am a conspiracy theorist who is talking out of his arse.
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      06-23-2011, 07:25 AM   #6
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What tyres do you have on yours?
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      06-23-2011, 08:39 AM   #7
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i mentioned the steering response in high winds issue to a dealer tech recently first question he asked me is "what tyres is your car using?"

i should add my car feels solid 99.99% of the time. it did feel a bit alarming once in very high side winds but the winds were so high that night it was hard to be subjective...i mean a HGV in front of me literally nearly tipped over so i thought well maybe its not the car its just the conditions, unless i could have flagged down another passing motorist at the time and drove a few miles up the road in their car its difficult to judge is it just that extreme weather or is your car really different.

in normal / average windy days it feels fine.
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      06-23-2011, 09:09 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by northernmonkey View Post
i mentioned the steering response in high winds issue to a dealer tech recently first question he asked me is "what tyres is your car using?"
Which is precisely what I just asked

Come on - those who aren't affected, give us your tyre info!

My car runs 275/40/18 and 245/45/18 Dunlop SP Maxx RFT
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      06-23-2011, 11:45 AM   #9
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Pirelli P7 on 17 inch wheels. Wanders in the wind!!
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      06-23-2011, 12:37 PM   #10
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In March of this year BMW changed the entire steering rack/motor/control assembly and the part number is the same as that fitted to the F12 640i.
I've driven the new 6 series over a period of several days, totalling about 600 miles over all types of road surfaces and conditions. The steering is far more responsive, but that could be due to different programming, wheel size (20") and tyres. However, the vague on-centre lack of feedback is still present, albeit to a far lesser degree.
Like many other posters, I think this is due to BMW switching from hydraulic to electric assist steering and it looks like we're stuck with it. The new F10 M5 also has electric with M Servotronic; don't know whether the 'M' will make any difference, but if it doesn't, I think BMW will be losing a lot of M car loyalists.
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      06-23-2011, 12:49 PM   #11
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Mine came with the ContiSport Contact 3 SSR tyres in the same profile as Xenon. Now although it does feel very slightly twitchy on the straight on motorways it doesnt seem anywhere near as bad as described by the guys with issues on this forum....
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      06-23-2011, 02:07 PM   #12
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Jon, lots of that responsiveness will be down to the wheels which will have a much tighter sidewall on that diameter rim.

And yes I totally agree with the enthusiast perspective of the M5, they better get that right or it'll go wrong very quickly...

Electric steering will always have a vague feel at dead centre though, it can't not, there's no mechanical link to the wheels so they can't 'follow the road' and take away that constant-correction requirement. As previously posted though, there does seem to be a wide range of people from 'not too bad' to 'OMFG!' so you'd have to think something's not consistent...
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      06-23-2011, 03:23 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Chaos View Post
Jon, lots of that responsiveness will be down to the wheels which will have a much tighter sidewall on that diameter rim.

And yes I totally agree with the enthusiast perspective of the M5, they better get that right or it'll go wrong very quickly...

Electric steering will always have a vague feel at dead centre though, it can't not, there's no mechanical link to the wheels so they can't 'follow the road' and take away that constant-correction requirement. As previously posted though, there does seem to be a wide range of people from 'not too bad' to 'OMFG!' so you'd have to think something's not consistent...
Yes I know that larger wheels will improve responsiveness and, if you care to re-read my post, you'll find that's exactly what I said.
As to your statement regarding there being no mechanical link to the wheels: good grief, how else is the steering angle altered - by magic?
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      06-23-2011, 04:30 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon D View Post
Yes I know that larger wheels will improve responsiveness and, if you care to re-read my post, you'll find that's exactly what I said.
As to your statement regarding there being no mechanical link to the wheels: good grief, how else is the steering angle altered - by magic?
I was confirming your thoughts with my own, if you care to re-read my reply you may spot that subtle perspective.

Re the remainder of your post, the finer points of electro-mechanical engineering are clearly a bit much for you so I'll save your little head all the confusion of explaining.
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      06-23-2011, 07:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Chaos View Post
I was confirming your thoughts with my own, if you care to re-read my reply you may spot that subtle perspective.

Re the remainder of your post, the finer points of electro-mechanical engineering are clearly a bit much for you so I'll save your little head all the confusion of explaining.
You're absolutely correct in assuming that it's all a bit too much for my "little head". However, I'm very keen to be enlightened on the finer points of "electro-mechanical" steering and unless I consult experts such as yourself I won't learn anything. Therefore, I'd be most grateful if you could take the trouble to explain the lack of any mechanical linkage in the system.
My sincere thanks for a brief, but dazzling, insight into your infinite engineering knowledge.
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      06-24-2011, 01:36 AM   #16
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Of course there is a mechanical linkage: the Power assisted steering simply, well, assists.

My car was manufactured in the third week of April so presumably has the later rack. The handling and steering weight is great but it still wanders. A bit.
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      06-24-2011, 02:49 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xenon View Post
Of course there is a mechanical linkage: the Power assisted steering simply, well, assists....
Yes, that's how I understood it too Ian, but in the light of the startling revelation from Captain Chaos concerning there being no mechanical link to the wheels, it would appear that we might be barking up the wrong tree
The attached pictures show the current F10 set-up and, for the life of me, I simply cannot figure out where the non-mechanical bit is
Attached Images
  
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      06-24-2011, 02:54 AM   #18
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I didn't have any link between the steering wheel and the steering rack at all on my e92, I used the Force.

I'm going to try a tyre-pressure adjustment I think - I haven't even checked that since I got the car....
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      06-24-2011, 02:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xenon View Post
I didn't have any link between the steering wheel and the steering rack at all on my e92, I used the Force...
So that's how it works - I knew there must be an element of PFM somewhere in the system
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      06-24-2011, 03:16 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xenon View Post
I'm going to try a tyre-pressure adjustment I think - I haven't even checked that since I got the car....
Quite early on I noticed that the F10 is particularly sensitive to very small pressure variations and found it most responsive at the lowest end of the range. I was initially concerned about uneven tyre wear, but after 9k miles it's perfectly even over all four tyres.
I'd recommend that you get yourself a decent dial type pressure gauge and experiment within the specified range.
A bit 'off-the-wall' maybe, but last November my dealer paid for a nitrogen fill and, believe it or not, there was a slight improvement. It's a more stable gas than compressed air and less prone to temperature variations or leakage. I know there'll be plenty of detractors, but all I can say is that, from personal experience - it works.
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      06-24-2011, 08:49 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xenon View Post
What tyres do you have on yours?
Turanza ER300 RFT's
225/55R17

I've never heard of Turanza before. No complaints here though.
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      06-24-2011, 09:44 AM   #22
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My March 2011 520d came with ContiSport Contact 3 SSR 18" and is absolutely fine.

No complaints here. Yes, the steering feels a little light but that's just a characteristic of the car... In no way would I say it was "dangerous".

I was a bit disappointed with the lightness of the steering when I first got my car but it was a damn sight better than the demo 520d I was given many months back which was a much older F10.

EDIT: My car is on the standard suspension - I dont have the fancy VDC or whatever the heck it's called (company car with limited company enforced options budget )

Last edited by sundance; 06-24-2011 at 09:53 AM.
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