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      09-15-2014, 05:33 PM   #23
NISFAN
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Thanks for the call Gordon, I'll be watching with interest
No, thank you for the chats and the offer to test the RS kit. I bet it is awesome out the box.
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      09-15-2014, 06:33 PM   #24
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Hi NISFAN,

Great move and best of luck - can't wait to hear what you think. I've changed the suspension on a few Beemers over the years and always got best results with Bilsteins. I think they only make dampers, so guess springs might be Eibach, but they've certainly partnered up on some kits.

I'm so with you on handing of the 330d. I don't fly around the place but like to make progress now and then. It's such a magnificent car in nearly all other respects, especially the drivetrain, but the ride and handling just bring it down. On slower roundabouts and bends, I can clearly hear the front tyres graunching on the road, as if in some permanent fight against understeer. I have adaptive and there just isn't a setting where you have the two things needed for good safe progress: control and suppleness.

I'm in a really strange quandary now that I'd never have expected. I've got three options on the table:

1. Buy (not lease) a 435d M Sport, with Michelin PSS all round (free swap with dealer) M Sport+ and VSS. Then get a serious suspension tuner to do a full job on roll bars, dampers and springs. No slamming for me either - total focus on a covert look with superbly composed ride, excellent control and no trace of understeer. I'm told that, even with the xDrive, the 435d can be made to handle quite nicely.

2. 430d M Sport with same spec as above and with PPK. Only concern is that, even with the PPK, I won't have the same sheer grunt, especially given the option to fit ACS or Hartge kit and get the 435d upto 540ft-lbs (Hartge) which would positively hurl the thing down the road. After replacing roll bars, dampers and springs, not sure how much handling and involvement difference there'd be between sDrive and xDrive.

2. Lease a Golf R and drive it as is ...

The local VW dealer went from showing little interest in me last week to offering a crazy lease deal today. 280 + IR VAT for a base spec, with standard nav and dynamic chassis. If I go that route, I'll spec it up a bit, but only with stuff that matters.

I'm leaning very dangerously toward the R at the moment, but I'm still pushing for a drive of an R, rather than the GTI I tried the other day. Ride, handling and steering so poetic, I'd either be laughing or crying with joy everywhere I went ...
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      09-19-2014, 09:03 AM   #25
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Just had an update, my car is nearly ready.....talk about anticipation.
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      09-19-2014, 09:08 AM   #26
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Will be looking forward to hearing the results. We need a full write-up!!
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      09-19-2014, 09:28 AM   #27
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Are you having the ARB mounts altered to match the drop?
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      09-19-2014, 09:29 AM   #28
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Are you having the ARB mounts altered to match the drop?
Nope, I haven't gone for a drop.
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      09-19-2014, 09:36 AM   #29
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      09-19-2014, 12:30 PM   #30
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I'm not sure if I like it......


















Or freakin love it .....


No, definitely love it.

I'm at pizza hut with my son, so no write up just yet.....but certainly worth waiting for
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      09-19-2014, 02:42 PM   #31
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Right back home now, just been 'playing' on damp rough B roads.....and I'm in a totally new car. Why the heck didn't I do this a year ago?....is all I can say. I love this car.

My car now rides taught.....saw the steering wheel and the front responds. Instead of some weird roll where the front or rear rolls at a different rate, they now roll together......but check this out.....there is less crashing than the standard system.....drive over cats eyes.....nothing.....just the sound of tyres thumping them. So the secondary ride is so much smoother, although you can feel a more 'granular' feel to the road surface. I no longer have to wince when going over potholes, they feel much smaller and almost insignificant now. These dampers actually work.

Turn the steering and lean on the suspension, and it stays flatter, much flatter than my Adaptive in Sport I'd say....but is still able to soak up bumps which the adaptive couldn't give two hoots about doing. Mid corner bumps don't send the wheels off line like before, they just track, and flash the TC light instead. Much less pendulum effect when changing direction from the rear end. Very confidence inspiring, as you can now feel what the chassis is doing.

Big test time....the bottom out....I have a large double bump on one of my favourite roads, along a straight bit.....before I would have to brake to stop the car bottoming out in the front....now? Rides over them like they weren't even there. The other thing that happened when the stock suspension bottomed out, is the front and rear seamed to want to go in different directions, making the car feel nervous and skittish. Gone.

Honestly I am not easily impressed, but this car now feels as taught and rides as well as an M3.....no joke. If you don't believe, come and try it.

There is still a little bit of tweaking to do to get the damping spot on, I think I have setting 3 all round, will look tomorrow.
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      09-19-2014, 02:57 PM   #32
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Looks excellent, pleased you have things sorted.
Great pics to
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      09-19-2014, 03:05 PM   #33
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You're taking bookings for test drives then NISFAN?

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      09-19-2014, 03:16 PM   #34
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Looks excellent, pleased you have things sorted.
Great pics to
Thanks...well recommended upgrade. Total transformation.
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      09-19-2014, 03:22 PM   #35
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You're taking bookings for test drives then NISFAN?

Absolutely, although it is a 3liter Diesel, might rip an unsuspecting 328i owners shoulders out their sockets on acceleration.

Can't believe I left out the brakes.......brake dive is all but gone. Only bad thing is it encourages late braking, loud clinking heard when I got home this evening.
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      09-19-2014, 03:24 PM   #36
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nice write up i have looked a few times throughout the day for it.It definatly sounds like a great mod, it is something that bothers me in mine tbh. I have a tourer is the kits the same as the one you have?
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      09-19-2014, 03:31 PM   #37
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Great news Gordon!

How far away from Berkhamsted are you? I'd very much like a chance for you to take us for a spin!
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      09-19-2014, 03:37 PM   #38
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nice write up i have looked a few times throughout the day for it.It definatly sounds like a great mod, it is something that bothers me in mine tbh. I have a tourer is the kits the same as the one you have?
Yes, it is the same part number for F31 too
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      09-19-2014, 03:40 PM   #39
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Great news Gordon!

How far away from Berkhamsted are you? I'd very much like a chance for you to take us for a spin!
Girlfriend lives just South of Leighton Buzzard...so not too far?!?!?
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      09-19-2014, 04:07 PM   #40
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Glad you are happier now with your pseudo M3 which does not drink fuel in an unfashionable manner. A great conclusion, well nearly.

You must surely have the most sensitive rump, arms, fingers and balance organs. If I was keeping my 330d I would certainly wish to have a ride in your car to gauge its ride and handling. I fully appreciate that you dislike a wallowing whale which is the remit of an F30 with or without Adaptive or even with ACS springs. That is why I was drawn to the R as it was taut but smooth.

But for gawd's sake resize your excellent pictures as it is a PITA to read your informative post.
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      09-19-2014, 05:19 PM   #41
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that is actually sitting perfectly, that's gotta be more then 20mm though!

glad it worked out for you - did you change any of the geometry or did you keep the stock settings?
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      09-19-2014, 06:10 PM   #42
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that is actually sitting perfectly, that's gotta be more then 20mm though!

glad it worked out for you - did you change any of the geometry or did you keep the stock settings?
The tech set it at 15mm rear and about 20mm front. About as low as I will go.....noticeable but not really if you know what I mean

Did KDS to M Performance suspension settings I think, so similar toe and camber to standard?!?!?
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      09-19-2014, 07:28 PM   #43
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Excellent result NISFAN.

If you say its as good as the M3 you can see why BMW wouldnt want to put such a system on a standard 3 series.

Couple of questions...

With the heavy 3 litre diesels the I've found the weight is always noticeable when changing direction, has this system improved this? ie does it still feel like a heavy car on cornering? Or does it feel a "lighter" car?

Do you think it needs upgraded ARBs? Or just not worth it?

Any downsides/disadvantages of the new system?
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      09-20-2014, 01:42 AM   #44
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It doesn't disguise the weight, that is just not possible....however, the weight tended to overpower the standard system, not so with this. So you get a pointiness to the front end, and can adjust lines with much more accuracy. Does that make sense?

ARB's? I've no doubt you could fine tune with ARB and get an absolutely stunning handling car....a question of how far are you willing to go, me thinks. My view, this is enough.....for the moment.

Regarding downsides, I guess personal opinion will come into this. As said there is a more granular feel to the tarmac, but not as pronounced as for example my Subaru Sti. I have got the damper setting on a lowly 3/10, I'm sure cranked up it might become a monster. Of course I am going to try, but again that is the beauty about an adjustable system like PSS10, you can select what feels best for you. The taught springs make the system work. I guess you have got part way there with the ACS springs? I chose the KOMFORT version, which means I can actually run stock M Sport ride height if I so desire. As it turns out, I like the slightly lowered stance. The standard PSS10 and most other kits would be on their highest setting to get to my current ride height.

Ride quality, no downsides if you like a sporty feel. It rides cat's eyes and pot holes much better than stock.

I am sure tyre life and brake life will suffer........but for good reasons

One thing I will comment on, as I have had a lot of stick about the adaptive system....no secret I thought it was crap. All the adaptive fans were banging on about the nirvana of a continually adjusting system. This Bilstein system sums it up to me.....you can't polish a turd, and the turd was the CHEAP dampers fitted to the F30 series. The adaptive dampers are made to the same spec as the non adaptive as far as I can see. BMW would have won more hearts if they had offered this system even if in B14 guise (non adjustable dampers) with settings similar to the level 3 damping I am using at the moment.
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