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      08-30-2012, 12:44 PM   #1
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What is the Adaptive M Suspension?

Sounds good, but don't really understand what you're getting with it. I searched and went back a few pages but couldn't come up with anything clear. What do you get with Adaptive M Suspension?
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      08-30-2012, 01:32 PM   #2
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you get the active dampeners. and you get VSS, variable sport steering.
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      08-30-2012, 01:55 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
you get the active dampeners. and you get VSS, variable sport steering.
Really? You get VSS free with Adpative Dampers in the US?
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      08-30-2012, 01:58 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by MaestroAl View Post
Really? You get VSS free with Adpative Dampers in the US?
i guess. they combined the package. instead of paying 900 for DHP and 250 for VSS you pay 1000 for both.
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      08-30-2012, 02:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
you get the active dampeners. and you get VSS, variable sport steering.
What is active dampeners? Is there any doc or website about BMW's specific active dampeners? Is this like Range Rover Evoque's Magna-ride system where the suspension adjusts automatically 1,000 times per second based on your driving and conditions of the road?
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      08-30-2012, 02:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWCali View Post
What is active dampeners? Is there any doc or website about BMW's specific active dampeners? Is this like Range Rover Evoque's Magna-ride system where the suspension adjusts automatically 1,000 times per second based on your driving and conditions of the road?
pretty much, when you are in comfort mode the suspension softens up like a luxury car and when your in sport mode it stiffens like a sports car
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      08-30-2012, 02:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
pretty much, when you are in comfort mode the suspension softens up like a luxury car and when your in sport mode it stiffens like a sports car
I thought the standard F30 does that? If it doesn't have the M adaptive suspension, then the different modes (Comfort, Sport, etc.) ONLY change the steering feel and throttle response?
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      08-30-2012, 02:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWCali View Post
I thought the standard F30 does that? If it doesn't have the M adaptive suspension, then the different modes (Comfort, Sport, etc.) ONLY change the steering feel and throttle response?
yes, and shift points.
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      08-30-2012, 02:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinnum1 View Post
yes, and shift points.
Gotcha. Thanks!

So how much tighter does the M adaptive suspension make the suspension and control body roll when in Sport+ vs. the standard suspension on the F30? Is it 50 to 100% tighter, or is the margin a lot smaller than that? I test drove a standard 335i without the M adaptive suspension so just curious if I should expect to see a huge difference with body roll control with the M adaptive suspension in Sport+.
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      08-30-2012, 03:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWCali View Post
Gotcha. Thanks!

So how much tighter does the M adaptive suspension make the suspension and control body roll when in Sport+ vs. the standard suspension on the F30? Is it 50 to 100% tighter, or is the margin a lot smaller than that? I test drove a standard 335i without the M adaptive suspension so just curious if I should expect to see a huge difference with body roll control with the M adaptive suspension in Sport+.
They are adaptable dampers, not roll bars. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that dampers basically control how quickly the suspension settles after compressing (and then rebounding). Without dampers, you'd hit a bump and your car would keep wobbling for a while (and if you hit multiple bumps get completely unsettled). Harder dampers would therefore not decrease the initial roll while the suspension is still under a (near constant) cornering load. It's only when the suspension rebounds that the dampers come into play.

If all of this is correct then active dampers simply allow you to choose the speed at which the car settles. Logically, the faster the movement settles (with the extreme being instantly after the compression), the 'harder' the suspension will feel (although it's still the same suspension, but in a way you are just using it less). Conversely, a softer setting allows the car to gently and gradually 'tune out' the initial compression, giving a softer ride. The advantage of the harder setting is that you can keep more control even when going fast over uneven surfaces, by instantly (or much more quickly) settling the car.

Given all of this, I wouldn't expect that M-adaptive cars have less roll than a standard car - unless M-adaptive also includes stiffer roll bars? As a matter of fact, I wonder whether M sport suspension includes stiffer roll bars? If that is the case perhaps the 'M' in 'M adaptive' (as opposed to say 'dynamic damping control' in the 5 series) might imply that the base setup is the same as the M, potentially including said stiffer roll bars?

Note that on the 5 series you also have Adaptive Drive (I think it is called), which is actually actively controlling the roll bars.
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      08-30-2012, 03:13 PM   #11
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Just having had a look at the BMW web site, but in the description of M-adaptive I found no mention of changes to roll bars (or any mention of less body roll in general). The 'M' in M-adaptive seems to be linked to the 10mm decrease in ride height (which 'dynamic damping control' on the 5 series does not have). Plus it probably sounds more appealing to the younger 3-series audience (so thank marketing for that).

On the other hand, the description of the M sports package clearly states that the M sport suspension (standard, not adaptive), has stiffer springs, stiffer dampers and 'harder' (literal translation) roll bars (I think - literally: 'stabilizers').

So a very interesting question is now whether an M-adaptive suspended car will now roll more than an M-suspension one, and whether or not this is linked to the M sport package or not (i.e. M-adaptive Sport Line would roll more than M-adaptive M Pack).

One more thing about the adaptive dampers which has less to do with their 'sportiness', is that I would assume they can adapt to the load of the car. A heavier car in theory needs different damping than a lighter one to get the same effect. Adaptive damping might eliminate this difference by dynamically adjusting.
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      08-30-2012, 03:14 PM   #12
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http://auto.howstuffworks.com/car-suspension2.htm

The Adaptive suspension has magnetically controlled (which is now common place on many high end cars) dampers. The standard suspension and sport suspension do not.

The stiffer suspension settings on the adaptive suspension will help control body roll, because the resistance in the damper is much higher and therefore can absorb more force.

Based on feedback from the forum, the adaptive suspension goes around +/- 20% in each direction compared to the sport suspension. So in comfort mode it would be softer, in sport mode it would be harder.
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      08-30-2012, 03:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dust16 View Post
Just having had a look at the BMW web site, but in the description of M-adaptive I found no mention of changes to roll bars (or any mention of less body roll in general). The 'M' in M-adaptive seems to be linked to the 10mm decrease in ride height (which 'dynamic damping control' on the 5 series does not have). Plus it probably sounds more appealing to the younger 3-series audience (so thank marketing for that).

On the other hand, the description of the M sports package clearly states that the M sport suspension (standard, not adaptive), has stiffer springs, stiffer dampers and 'harder' (literal translation) roll bars (I think - literally: 'stabilizers').

So a very interesting question is now whether an M-adaptive suspended car will now roll more than an M-suspension one, and whether or not this is linked to the M sport package or not (i.e. M-adaptive Sport Line would roll more than M-adaptive M Pack).

One more thing about the adaptive dampers which has less to do with their 'sportiness', is that I would assume they can adapt to the load of the car. A heavier car in theory needs different damping than a lighter one to get the same effect. Adaptive damping might eliminate this difference by dynamically adjusting.
There are 3 total suspensions offered on the F30:

Standard - Which is what is on a non Dynamic handling equipped base model, luxury, or modern line (Softest, standard ride height)
Sport - This is the SAME on BOTH the M-Sport and Sport models. BMW simply mis-labels it to confuse you. The actual suspension components are the same. This includes the stiffer suspension, non adjustable dampers and a 10mm ride height reduction except on the X-Drive)
Adaptive - This is the sport hardware combined with the adjustable dampers. Again 10mm lower unless on an Xdrive.
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      08-30-2012, 03:24 PM   #14
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A totally non-technical response .........
M Sport Adaptive Suspenders: The difference between an amazing car and a mediocre one.
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      08-30-2012, 03:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dust16 View Post
They are adaptable dampers, not roll bars. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that dampers basically control how quickly the suspension settles after compressing (and then rebounding). Without dampers, you'd hit a bump and your car would keep wobbling for a while (and if you hit multiple bumps get completely unsettled). Harder dampers would therefore not decrease the initial roll while the suspension is still under a (near constant) cornering load. It's only when the suspension rebounds that the dampers come into play.

If all of this is correct then active dampers simply allow you to choose the speed at which the car settles. Logically, the faster the movement settles (with the extreme being instantly after the compression), the 'harder' the suspension will feel (although it's still the same suspension, but in a way you are just using it less). Conversely, a softer setting allows the car to gently and gradually 'tune out' the initial compression, giving a softer ride. The advantage of the harder setting is that you can keep more control even when going fast over uneven surfaces, by instantly (or much more quickly) settling the car.
You're describing the rebound function of a damper .. what about the bump settings? I don't want to bore you with it now but suffice to say, it's more complicated than that and the efects are much more pronounced The adaptive suspension is very, very good
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      08-30-2012, 03:43 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by F30AM View Post
A totally non-technical response .........
M Sport Adaptive Suspenders: The difference between an amazing car and a mediocre one.
I hope your not trying to say the F30 sport without dynamic handling is a mediocre car.
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      08-30-2012, 04:30 PM   #17
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Test drove a car without, and bought my car with the Adaptive running gear. Good choice in hindsight.
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      08-30-2012, 04:54 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWCali View Post
What is active dampeners? Is there any doc or website about BMW's specific active dampeners? Is this like Range Rover Evoque's Magna-ride system where the suspension adjusts automatically 1,000 times per second based on your driving and conditions of the road?
The idea is the same, making dampers that can alter how they control the springs.

BMW does not use "magnetic fluid" to control the fluids viscosity, and thus how that fluid travels through the 'compression' and 'rebound' circuits to control the spring.
That system was developed by Delphi-GM and is used in some GM cars, Audi, Acura, and Ferrari.
Land Rover is the first to use it for off-road. Pretty cool.

BMW is using electronically controlled circuit valves that can change the opening of the valves, thus controlling how the damper fluid flows.
Fluid flow is used to absorb the springs energy.
When the car hits a bump, the springs compress in order to absorb that energy. The damper is there to control the spring. If there were no damper, then the spring would compress and then recoil sending the energy back into the chassis, the spring expands, then the car compress's the spring again, and the cycle repeats until the spring finally rests, unless it hits another bump before that, and the pogo'ing starts all over again.

The damper absorbs the springs energy and uses fluid to dissipate it.
Controlling how the fluid flows helps to control the compression and rebound (uncompression) of the spring.
There are different types of bumps and impacts, some are sharp and short, some are softer but longer. This requires a different fluid flow by which to control how the spring is compressing and rebounding.

By controlling the valves opening, that controls how the damper/shock fluid controls the spring.
The magnetic system using and electric voltage to alter the magnetic metal particles in the fluid to orient themselves in different ways, which changes the fluids viscosity. By altering the voltage it can change the viscosity in milliseconds to adapt to the road condition.

So BMW is using valves to control how easily or not the fluid can flow within the damper.
The magnetic damper alters the actual fluids viscosity to control how it flows through it's valves.

It's "adaptive" so it's always on and continuously changing to adapt to the changing road conditions.
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      08-30-2012, 04:57 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWCali View Post
Gotcha. Thanks!

So how much tighter does the M adaptive suspension make the suspension and control body roll when in Sport+ vs. the standard suspension on the F30? Is it 50 to 100% tighter, or is the margin a lot smaller than that? I test drove a standard 335i without the M adaptive suspension so just curious if I should expect to see a huge difference with body roll control with the M adaptive suspension in Sport+.
This thread is pretty old, but has some good info from a BMW client advisor that drove sport suspension and adaptive sport suspension models back-to-back at a training event shortly after the F30 came out:

http://www.f30post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=649044
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      08-30-2012, 05:02 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dust16 View Post
Just having had a look at the BMW web site, but in the description of M-adaptive I found no mention of changes to roll bars (or any mention of less body roll in general). The 'M' in M-adaptive seems to be linked to the 10mm decrease in ride height (which 'dynamic damping control' on the 5 series does not have). Plus it probably sounds more appealing to the younger 3-series audience (so thank marketing for that).

On the other hand, the description of the M sports package clearly states that the M sport suspension (standard, not adaptive), has stiffer springs, stiffer dampers and 'harder' (literal translation) roll bars (I think - literally: 'stabilizers').

So a very interesting question is now whether an M-adaptive suspended car will now roll more than an M-suspension one, and whether or not this is linked to the M sport package or not (i.e. M-adaptive Sport Line would roll more than M-adaptive M Pack).

One more thing about the adaptive dampers which has less to do with their 'sportiness', is that I would assume they can adapt to the load of the car. A heavier car in theory needs different damping than a lighter one to get the same effect. Adaptive damping might eliminate this difference by dynamically adjusting.
The Msport gets the standard sport suspension with all the upgrades.

The adaptive suspension ADDS the adaptive dampers to the whole kit.

In terms of weight, the adaptive dampers control the spring motions.
They can not compensate for added weight in terms of leveling the load.
That is something that an air suspension can do.
On a standard metal spring, you would have to adjust the spring pre-load in order to compensate for weight. More weight, use greater pre-load.
But, these car don't get that type of spring/damper system.
Coil over systems have that ability.

Dampers are usually fitted to springs. Springs are fitted to the chassis based on it's anticipated load.
The springs selected for the 3 series takes into account what it's lightest and heaviest load will be.
The springs do the "lifting" per se, and the dampers are there to control the springs motion.
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      08-30-2012, 05:05 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyberdemon View Post
There are 3 total suspensions offered on the F30:

Standard - Which is what is on a non Dynamic handling equipped base model, luxury, or modern line (Softest, standard ride height)
Sport - This is the SAME on BOTH the M-Sport and Sport models. BMW simply mis-labels it to confuse you. The actual suspension components are the same. This includes the stiffer suspension, non adjustable dampers and a 10mm ride height reduction except on the X-Drive)
Adaptive - This is the sport hardware combined with the adjustable dampers. Again 10mm lower unless on an Xdrive.

YES! You got it.
Except, the dampers don't use the magnetic fluid system.
They use electronic controlled valves to alter the valve opening size.
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      08-30-2012, 06:15 PM   #22
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Great info Dust16, Cyberdemon, and RPM90! Thank you very much!! Hopefully this thread is helpful to a lot of others with the same question, too! Answers it very well!
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