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      02-09-2013, 02:47 PM   #1
der_kommissar
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Thoughts of a current E90 owner

My 2007 328i was in the shop this week, so I asked to get an x1 for a loaner because I'm very interested in picking one up once they start hitting the CPO market. They gave me an xDrive28i that was pretty much a stripper. It had the fineline wood trim and the cold weather package, and that was about it. I had it for about three days, so I got to try it out multiple times on my 60 mile commute to and from work.

Overall I really like the car and would still strongly consider it to replace mine when I get tired of being off warranty. The gas mileage was just a bit better than mine- I tend to average 27 to 28 mpg in mostly highway, and more down to 25-26 combined. The loaner was averaging 28 highway, but I was surprised that eco pro did little. Less fun to drive, but had very little impact on the highway. Maybe it does better in city driving.

As far as the engine goes, it drives quite different than my NA inline 6, but I like it. It's a quick car, quicker than my 328i at higher revs. Down low, the 8 speed transmission shifts so often that you never really seem to maximize the better torque. Maybe I've just adapted to the AT in my 3, but I liked how the inline 6 pulls down low, even if it's not as strong. I think the combo in the x1 is overall better, especially for new drivers, since you don't need to learn the non-linear throttle that I have in my 3. You do get more of that kick in the pants feeling, but it sometimes does not feel as strong as the 6. I'd say the tradeoff for MPG is worth it, and I bet the more I drove it I would figure out how to maximize the x1 too.

Handling is as good or better, which is great for the somewhat increased ride height. As for the increased height, I was surprised to notice that it's really not very high at all. You're pretty much on level with large sedans now, whereas the e90 was lower than them. Not SUV height at all, but enough to make egress easier and working with child seats nicer. I expect the height is much better for getting very young children into their seats.

Even though the base price is cheaper than a new 3, the lack of some features that should be standard bugs me. The interior quality is fine, but I have a hard time paying >$30k for a car without power seats. Plus, iDrive (not nav) should be standard. At least they should offer a cheaper tech package without nav. And the lack of auto dimming mirrors really bugged me at night, since there is seemingly no way to dim the center rearview at all.

The extra ride hight does allow more room for the driver, which I really like, and the cabin does feel "updated" compared to e90, but it feels more like a second lci (which it really is).

The stereo does sound worse than in my '07, but not nearly as bad as the base audio that they did standard in the '10s. That was the worst stereo I've heard in just about any car. This one has very imprecise bass and sounds a bit more tinny, but overall acceptable. The cost to get something better stock, however, is way too much.

The real issue I have, I think, is that it's not hard to add options and be in base X3 territory, at which point you would have a better equipped, larger car, but one that does not drive as well and does not get as good gas mileage.

And still, this is a car that puts a smile on your face when you drive it. And it's a pretty unique car too, kind of like the A3 in the states in that regard. It's a fun car to drive with just enough increased utility to be of use to a small family. If they had brought this here when they did the LCI I think it might have gutted the market for the 3. At this point, the price just is not right (outside the base, no option model), limiting it to those who really have a connection to the car and BMW. That may be exactly what we want. At the least, knowing that the RWD nature of this model is likely to disappear at the next redesign, this is a car for BMW people that know what a BMW should be, and don't care about the cup holders.
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      02-09-2013, 03:45 PM   #2
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I'm assuming you don't have the sports suspension on your 328i. I had a 2009 E90 335i which out handled the x28i M Sport I drive now. The adaptive sport suspension and variable sport steering in my parent's F30 328i out handles them both, but loses a minor amount of steering feedback in comparison.

The elevated ride height and more spacious area under the driver's side dash makes the X1 a more comfortable drive than the E9x or F30.
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      02-09-2013, 03:51 PM   #3
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Great post BTW...thanks!
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      02-09-2013, 03:53 PM   #4
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Correct, I do not have the sports suspension. I actually still have the original 16 in wheels even. In general I found handling to be very similar, but the x1 was a softer ride that muted the feel of the road surface (for better and for worse). I did like it better than the feel of the new 3er. I'm in the process of getting new 3g RFTs to replace my turanzas, so soon I'll know if the difference was suspension changes or just my old RFTs.

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Originally Posted by nospam View Post
I'm assuming you don't have the sports suspension on your 328i. I had a 2009 E90 335i which out handled the x28i M Sport I drive now. The adaptive sport suspension and variable sport steering in my parent's F30 328i out handles them both, but loses a minor amount of steering feedback in comparison.

The elevated ride height and more spacious area under the driver's side dash makes the X1 a more comfortable drive than the E9x or F30.
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      02-09-2013, 04:02 PM   #5
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Check out the Michelin PS2 RFTs. I believe they are still the best RFT. The Bridgestone S001 and Pirelli summers are much improved I understand.
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      02-11-2013, 02:12 AM   #6
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With the non-auto dimming mirror, you turn the big ugly round clear thing to flip the mirror to dim it. Yes, it is very lame.
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      02-11-2013, 03:34 PM   #7
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With the non-auto dimming mirror, you turn the big ugly round clear thing to flip the mirror to dim it. Yes, it is very lame.
The clown nose? Really? I'm glad it is possible to dim, but I never even thought of turning it. I pushed it just to see what would happen, but never turned it. I was afraid I would have to pony up for the premium package just for dimable mirrors.
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      02-12-2013, 09:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nospam View Post
but loses a minor amount of steering feedback in comparison.
Minor amount?
The BMWs I drove with EPS were horrible, no feedback at all through the steering wheel. Only feedback I received was through my ass and hearing that the tires were starting to slide.
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      02-12-2013, 12:06 PM   #9
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Did you read my post? My parents' vehicle is equipped with adaptive sport suspension and variable sport steering. Have you driven a F30 with VSS?
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      02-18-2013, 08:20 PM   #10
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Interesting post.

I'm looking to trade in my 2007 E92 and after test driving the X1 2.8, I was unimpressed compared to my NA 6 cylinder. I will be taking a second look at the X1 3.5 since there is a small difference in price between the 2.8 & 3.5 based on how I want it equipped.
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      02-19-2013, 10:53 AM   #11
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Having owned a 2007 X3 3.0 with 260 HP and the the X1 2.8 with 240 HP the X1 will smoke the 3.0. The 0-60 on the X3 was 7.1-7.2 while its 6.2 on my sdrive. The X3 was great above 75-80 with high rpms but pretty much a dog due to low torque. Unless you have a manual transmission there is no comparison in performance. Car and Driver just tested the X3 in March and got 6.2 0-60 with the same 2.0 turbo.
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      02-19-2013, 03:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucky13 View Post
Having owned a 2007 X3 3.0 with 260 HP and the the X1 2.8 with 240 HP the X1 will smoke the 3.0. The 0-60 on the X3 was 7.1-7.2 while its 6.2 on my sdrive. The X3 was great above 75-80 with high rpms but pretty much a dog due to low torque.
The main factor here isn't low torque, but that even the old X3 has a 200 lb higher curb weight as well as being 6" taller and 2" wider. Of course it's going to be less snappy even if you put the same engine in both.
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      02-19-2013, 05:09 PM   #13
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I'm comparing 2007 X3 of 7.1 to 7.2 0-60 verses 2013 X3 with 2.0 where Car and Driver just got a 6.2 0-60 and they both weight the same. I've owned 8 versions of the 2.8/3.0 in auto and manual and unless you can get high rpms its would not keep up with the 2.0 due to torque. It was a great engine with a manual where you could keep it at high rpms but rather sluggish with the 6 speed auto. Granted the 8 speed helps a lot but even the new X3 with 2.0 and 8 speed is faster than the 2011 X3 with 8 speed and 3.0 (2012 they dropped the 2.0 turbo in it).
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      02-19-2013, 05:18 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucky13 View Post
I'm comparing 2007 X3 of 7.1 to 7.2 0-60 verses 2013 X3 with 2.0 where Car and Driver just got a 6.2 0-60 and they both weight the same. I've owned 8 versions of the 2.8/3.0 in auto and manual and unless you can get high rpms its would not keep up with the 2.0 due to torque. It was a great engine with a manual where you could keep it at high rpms but rather sluggish with the 6 speed auto. Granted the 8 speed helps a lot but even the new X3 with 2.0 and 8 speed is faster than the 2011 X3 with 8 speed and 3.0 (2012 they dropped the 2.0 turbo in it).
The first post to discuss this was an E90 328i six speed manual compared to an E84 X1 28i (8s auto, of course). With the weight advantage of the E90 and the manual, it's unlikely that the E84 is any quicker, or that the flatter torque curve is much of an advantage.

As for the 8s being an advantage, it clearly is when compared to the 6s in the old x28i cars, but it's a lot thinner distinction (except in efficiency) when compared to the much better 6s ZF box that's been in the x35i cars for years.
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