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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > All-Wheel-Drive (Xi / xDrive) Talk > XI tire size - room for error?



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      10-08-2008, 02:50 PM   #23
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I think stock 325XI with sports package has staggered 225/45-17 in front and 255/40-17 in rear = difference in overall diameter between front and rear = 0.06 inches or 0.24028 % difference

235/35-19 in front and 275/30-19 in rear = difference in overall diameter between front and rear = 0.02 inches or 0.07849 % difference

I think this is even better than stock set up
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      10-08-2008, 04:21 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neejkoob View Post
Thanks for the response.

Are you sure it is not et 33 rear and 35 front. This seems to be the most popular offset.

I assume you also have the sedan? I heard that some coupes were having rubbing issues with 275 and 33 offset in the back.
Sorry Lixdexia.
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      10-08-2008, 04:23 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neejkoob View Post
I think stock 325XI with sports package has staggered 225/45-17 in front and 255/40-17 in rear = difference in overall diameter between front and rear = 0.06 inches or 0.24028 % difference

235/35-19 in front and 275/30-19 in rear = difference in overall diameter between front and rear = 0.02 inches or 0.07849 % difference

I think this is even better than stock set up
It also varies slightly with tires. As an example I have Kumho MX's on my carrera at 225/45/17 f and 255/40/17 rear. The tires from the mfr are exactly 25.0 diameter both front an rear.
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      10-09-2008, 06:56 PM   #26
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235/35/19 - front
275/30/19 - rear

Falken FK452s

This is a great setup and there is nothing wrong running staggered in an AWD, like everyone else said just make sure the rolling diameter is less the 1% difference. Though running the same size tire at all four corners will get you around the track faster and you have the convenience to rotate them

The AWD system in the XI is rwd bias, meaning you mainly run in rwd and the front doesn't start gripping until the rear slips.
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      10-09-2008, 10:43 PM   #27
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Sorry to high-jack the thread, will 19x10 w/ et +38 fit close to flush in the rear?

I want to lower the car in the future, so I need to make sure this setup will be ok and it will not rub...
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      10-09-2008, 10:49 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGxi View Post
Sorry to high-jack the thread, will 19x10 w/ et +38 fit close to flush in the rear?

I want to lower the car in the future, so I need to make sure this setup will be ok and it will not rub...
You might have some problems with that offset if you plan to lower. Whats the minimum size tire without stretching fits on a 10"? 275?
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      10-09-2008, 11:23 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SGxi View Post
Sorry to high-jack the thread, will 19x10 w/ et +38 fit close to flush in the rear?

I want to lower the car in the future, so I need to make sure this setup will be ok and it will not rub...
With an e90 I'll bet it will fit fine.
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      10-09-2008, 11:28 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Nazareno View Post
Yes, I recall you posting that but I never saw the tech to back up your claim that E90 AWD doesn't require matched overall diameter of the tires.
Well, wait, now, let's be clear. I didn't mean to suggest that anyone should go mounting wheels of fundamentally different sizes in front vs. back. But what you wrote before was this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Nazareno View Post
This isn't just for a Xi BMW. it is for all AWD cars. you must stay within the same circumference/rotating diameter so the differentials do not suffer premature wear and failure.
And I thought you were suggesting something more than that the tires should be the same size. Specifically, based on the parts that I underlined, I thought you were saying that all awd systems require that all four wheels have identical circumfrence/rolling diameter at all times. What I meant was that different systems have different tolerances for variation between front and rear wheel circumfrence. I didn't mean to imply that the OP should go out and buy different sized tires for front and rear. Sorry if my post unclear on that point.

I'll give you an example using Subarus, because they have a few different types of AWD systems within their product line. Subies that use a viscous center coupling (which are generally the base models with 5MTs) require less than 1/4" diameter difference between front and rear wheels because the viscous coupling is designed to always maintain a 50:50 torque split, and its range of power distribution is limited. As Subaru explains:

"A synthetic viscous fluid is sealed in a housing with two sets of plates, one from each output shaft. Under normal driving conditions, both sets of plates and the viscous fluid spin at the same speed, but if one output shaft begins to move more quickly than the other (as would happen if one set of wheels began to lose traction), its set of plates begin to spin faster. This generates heat, causing the fluid to thicken, strengthening the adhesion between the two plates. The fluid tries to keep up with the faster plates, dragging the slower ones along with it. This balances the torque to both outputs, effectively “locking” both driveshafts at the same speed."

When one set of wheels is larger than the other, the viscous coupling gets stuck in a high-friction state longer than it should, and it will, in relatively short order, overheat and fail.

Subarus with a Variable Torque Distribution AWD system are different. The VTD system doesn't use a viscous center coupling- it uses an electronically controlled, heat-resistant multiplate center clutch pack (like xDrive), combined with a planetary gear set. In this type of system, the torque split is not always 50:50 - it's infinitely variable because the center clutch can be fully open, fully closed, or anywhere in between. When you put different sized tires on the front and rear wheels, what happens is simply that the clutch engages either more or less than usual, depending on whether the smaller wheels are on the front or rear axle. But because the clutch is more durable and made out of heat-resistant materials, it can tolerate more stress for a longer period of time than a viscous center coupling can. If you overload it for an extended period, it will still fail prematurely, but this type of system (which is very similar to xDrive) can tolerate a bigger difference in overall wheel diameter for a longer period of time than a viscous center coupling-based system can.

Now, that doeesn't mean that anyone should be running tires of fundamentally different sizes in the front and rear, just like you shouldn't run different size tires on the left and right. But it does mean that with a system like xDrive, you don't have to sweat the small stuff. You don't for example, have to buy 4 new tires when you get a flat at 5,000 miles. With some other AWD systems, you do have to think about that.

And the tech is in the BMW xDrive Dynamics manual. I'm not a BMW tech so I don't have my own copy. But I have seen it before. And I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night
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Last edited by Lassaxi; 10-10-2008 at 07:11 AM.
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      10-09-2008, 11:41 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikolas View Post
I don't know of any AWD car that doesn't do this. Which one's are you referring to? Porsche as an example matches rotating diameter - at least mine does.
Which Porsche do you have? Porsche has a couple of different AWD systems. I can tell you that, unless you have a 997 Turbo (2006 or later), or a 2009 Carrera 4, you likely have a viscous center coupling, which is quite sensitive to small differences in circumfrence. xDrive does not use a viscous center coupling.

The Cayenne doesn't have a viscous coupling, but it does have low-range gearing, which presents its own set of problems for mismatched tires.
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      10-10-2008, 07:47 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Humtek View Post
You might have some problems with that offset if you plan to lower. Whats the minimum size tire without stretching fits on a 10"? 275?
I want 275 to make sure I have as little as possible the difference in rolling diameter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikolas View Post
With an e90 I'll bet it will fit fine.
Thanks. I guess I'll need to make sure if I lower, it won't be slammed.
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      10-11-2008, 10:03 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Humtek View Post
The AWD system in the XI is rwd bias, meaning you mainly run in rwd and the front doesn't start gripping until the rear slips.

The BMW Xi system is actually 40/60 F/R full time for normal driving, and up to 0/100 or 100/0 when either end slips.

The whole idea of running a staggered set up is to reduce oversteer in a high power RWD car by making the rear end harder to slide sideways. In an Xi it is mostly for cosmetics since it doesn't oversteer that much to start with.
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      10-12-2008, 07:52 AM   #34
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I run 235/30/19 and 275/35/19 on my Linea Corses. Can anyone more mathematical prone than me plug that into the equation and see if I have an issue?
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      10-12-2008, 05:12 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonman4 View Post
I run 235/30/19 and 275/35/19 on my Linea Corses. Can anyone more mathematical prone than me plug that into the equation and see if I have an issue?
Your diameters are 25.48 & 25.50 within 0.077% excellent match for the Xi
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      10-13-2008, 12:28 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arter View Post
Your diameters are 25.48 & 25.50 within 0.077% excellent match for the Xi
awesome. thanks.
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      10-13-2008, 09:07 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonman4 View Post
I run 235/30/19 and 275/35/19 on my Linea Corses. Can anyone more mathematical prone than me plug that into the equation and see if I have an issue?

You got it backwards. Should be 235/35-19 F and 275/30-19 R that gives you 0.08% size difference.

Your original numbers 235/30-19 F and 275/35-19 R give you 8.26% speed difference that will for sure destroy your drive train!!
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      10-13-2008, 09:43 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by halB View Post
You got it backwards. Should be 235/35-19 F and 275/30-19 R that gives you 0.08% size difference.

Your original numbers 235/30-19 F and 275/35-19 R give you 8.26% speed difference that will for sure destroy your drive train!!

yeah, you are right, I must have reversed the numbers as the other set-up is strange ( expected the higher ratio up front).

Dragonman , I hope you have 235/35's in front and 275/30's in back.......
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      10-13-2008, 10:22 PM   #39
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while we're at it, i'd like to ask what would be the best size for 20" wheels. I currently have 245/285 but am getting a little rubbing so i'd like to get the rear to be 275, what would be the proper size for the front? thanks guys
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      10-14-2008, 10:42 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arter View Post
yeah, you are right, I must have reversed the numbers as the other set-up is strange ( expected the higher ratio up front).

Dragonman , I hope you have 235/35's in front and 275/30's in back.......
actually i was copying and pasting a few things at the time trying to multitask and screwed up a few things lol. I have 235/35 front and 265/30 rear.
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      10-15-2008, 01:30 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonman4 View Post
actually i was copying and pasting a few things at the time trying to multitask and screwed up a few things lol. I have 235/35 front and 265/30 rear.
Workable but not the best match. Your rear tires are actually smaller than your front tires and your speed difference is very close to the maximum allowable 1%. Should consider narrowing the front to 225 (0.2% diff), or better still, widening the rear to 275 (0.1% diff).
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