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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Tracking, Autocrossing, Dragstrip, Driving Techniques > Tracking a steptronic 335



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      10-12-2009, 10:47 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Porschefile View Post
Well I just returned from 2 days at VIR and the cooler seems to have cooled the car effectively. I was hitting 270-280 oil temps on a cool day (67 degrees or so). I think it's safe to say that on a warm summer day the car would overheat with the AR cooler. During my last session the car went into limp mode and the SES light came on and I assume it was the transmission (oil was in normal range). The 335 steptronic is a great street car but not suitable for the track even with the oil cooler. I'll probably end up getting a spec E30 or an E36 M3 to play with.
I had problems last year with limp tracking an auto in manual mode with Dinan stage III. The problem is that all the transmission loses are rejected into to the cooling system. There are few thing s you can do to combat this.

1. Run in manual mode only.
2. Run with traction control completely off. There is really no choice in the matter.
3. Change the coolant to 30/70 mixture with a bottle of water wetter. My overall coolant temperature dropped about 18-23 F which was more enough to keep me out of limp mode on the hottest summer days. Only draw back is the coolant must be changed back for cold weather and due to mixture should be replaced yearly to prevent corrosion.

A few other people have done this as well with the same results. The science is fairly simple. The coolant mixture of 30/70 allows for more heat to be transferred at and at a higher rate than normal 50/50 mixture. This allows for much more heat to absorb at the source so you don’t get localized boiling which is the true cause of heat induced limp for this car. The other befits is the heat is rejected out also at much higher rate at the radiator so it far more efficient. A bigger radiator will help with overall heat rejection to atmosphere but it will not solve the problems at the places where heat is absorbed into the system like the head and exhaust valve area in the water jacket.

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      10-13-2009, 12:25 PM   #24
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I was at Road America over the weekend with the Badger Bimmers, and finally had a few sessions with out heat induced limp. It only took near freezing temps to avoid limp. (My second session Saturday was snowed, yes SNOWED out.)

The other two guys with 335i's who were pushing their cars at least as hard as I was, both also had factory oil coolers and sports packages. However, mine was the only one to get to 300 degrees. They both stayed around 260-270, and one of them had a Dinan Stage II, but was running a 6 MT. The other guy was set up same as me, 335i sedan, with stock run-flat tires and brakes (I use Cool Carbon pads) and a 6AT.

I'm not planning on giving up hope for my track days with my E92 with 6AT. I plan on getting the BMW Power Performance package in the spring. Hopefully, the additional cooling will keep me on the track in July, when it's hotter than 3 alarm fire.

While I'd love to get a C6 Z06 as a track toy, I don't have an extra 50 large laying around.


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      10-14-2009, 10:27 AM   #25
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Cool, if I go again in this car I'll run manual mode and put some water wetter in. Are there oils that help the oil temp stay low? I hit 285-290 at times at VIR and it wasn't hot out and I was running the stock tune.
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      03-09-2010, 12:52 PM   #26
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CLEAR! ::ZAP:: [thread revived]

I plan on participating in 3-5 HPDE events a year and am wondering if a steptronic would suffice (given proper measures are taken, like those mentioned above). Should I have any qualms about driving a steptronic on the track? 98% of the time it will be my DD, but I want to make sure I won't blow it up if I do bring it to a local HPDE event.

Also, are there any concerns with modding a step over a manual?
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      03-10-2010, 11:51 AM   #27
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so it sounds like I must be crazy to try and take my e90 without oil cooler and my mods to the track....I guess I'm going to keep my fingers crossed and count on the fact that its going to be my first time going to the track and I doubt I will be going at it that hard.
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      03-10-2010, 02:28 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinturbopg View Post
so it sounds like I must be crazy to try and take my e90 without oil cooler and my mods to the track....I guess I'm going to keep my fingers crossed and count on the fact that its going to be my first time going to the track and I doubt I will be going at it that hard.
You shouldn't have any problems, especially if this is your first time out. I had no problems tracking my car in a few events last year, and it's an auto with no oil cooler and JB2.

However, as I was getting faster I noticed that the temps were creeping up. This year I am going to try Orb's advice above regarding the 30/70 mix with waterwetter in the cooling system. I did this in my previous car, a Miata, and it worked well, even with a supercharger and stock rad (the stocker is known to be too small for track use).
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      03-10-2010, 06:14 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanE92 View Post
First of all oil cooler is a must to track this car in hot weather(above 70f).Second to keep things cooler run higher gear in corners(there is enough tourqe down low)to keep RPM lower=lower heat generated.Third,but most important (unless you are experienced racer)keep the DAM DSC ON at all time.It will not slow you down much(if any)and it just might safe your BUT>it surely beats wrecking the $53K trying to be a hero.I tracked my 335i with DSC on and with multiple laps it actualy will make you faster in the long run(it keeps tires from sliding in the corners)which will prevent your tires from overheating,which=more grip in the corners=faster times=less tire wear=MOORE FUNN.DSC off mode I would save for drifting,not for tracking the car.By the way I noticed the DSC to be absolutly not intrusive almost 100% of the time,the car still can be driven at the limit of grip.When it does come on is when you make mistake by braking to late into the corner or when you overdrive your tires.Also,changing your stock alligment specs to DINAN spec settings will help your car with understeer and make it neutral handling. Front toe L 0.08,R 0.08 total toe 0.16 front Rear toe R 0.12,L 0.12 total rear toe 0.24(by DINAN specs)
I actualy run rear at 0.14+0.14 = 0.28 total rear toe and LOVE the neutral handling.From the factory this car just sucks(it want's to go straight only)DINAN spec alligment cures that condition...
GOOD LUCK at the track students...!!!
good to know awesome.
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      03-12-2010, 07:48 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanE92 View Post
Also,changing your stock alligment specs to DINAN spec settings will help your car with understeer and make it neutral handling. Front toe L 0.08,R 0.08 total toe 0.16 front Rear toe R 0.12,L 0.12 total rear toe 0.24(by DINAN specs)
I actualy run rear at 0.14+0.14 = 0.28 total rear toe and LOVE the neutral handling.From the factory this car just sucks(it want's to go straight only)DINAN spec alligment cures that condition...
Besides toe adjustment, do you just run factory alignment specs (camber, caster)?

I've heard that you can't dial in too much camber because of factory restrictions, but if you remove some "mounting pin", you can get more front camber. Have you done this?
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      03-12-2010, 09:30 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CdnE90 View Post
Besides toe adjustment, do you just run factory alignment specs (camber, caster)?

I've heard that you can't dial in too much camber because of factory restrictions, but if you remove some "mounting pin", you can get more front camber. Have you done this?
The ideal alignment varies a lot anyway depending on how experienced you are, how hard you drive it on track, and whether it has to be driven on the street as well. It's difficult if not impossible to have a very well set up track car that is streetable. If you get to -2.5 or -3.0 degrees camber then it will work well on track but probably eat the insides of the tires on the street. I'm actually thinking about selling the Cayman and getting another 335i because the way I have the Cayman set up right now it sucks on the street and it's my only car. It's fun on track though
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      02-05-2012, 12:10 AM   #32
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try the ER competition oil cooler (dual oil coolers)
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      02-28-2012, 08:42 AM   #33
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I'm in the same boat as some of you, no factory oil cooler with step AT. I was at the track for my second time last month and the only session I didn't hit limp in was the very first. Mind you, temps were in the 30s during that session! I had to cut my day short because I was becoming a rolling roadblock for the other drivers.

I'm adding a Stett Stage 2 oil cooler this Friday, so I'll post up the results of my next track outing. By the way, I participated in numerous AX events last year and never hit limp despite blazing summer temps here in TX.

This year I plan to do a few less AX events and a few more track days, so the cooler is an absolute requirement.
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      02-28-2012, 09:43 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acj75 View Post
I'm in the same boat as some of you, no factory oil cooler with step AT. I was at the track for my second time last month and the only session I didn't hit limp in was the very first. Mind you, temps were in the 30s during that session! I had to cut my day short because I was becoming a rolling roadblock for the other drivers.

I'm adding a Stett Stage 2 oil cooler this Friday, so I'll post up the results of my next track outing. By the way, I participated in numerous AX events last year and never hit limp despite blazing summer temps here in TX.

This year I plan to do a few less AX events and a few more track days, so the cooler is an absolute requirement.
I'd be curious to know how much the kit and install is as well. Thanks for sharing!
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      02-28-2012, 11:22 AM   #35
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Defintely some interesting food for thought. I was considering tracking my 335i step in march. I just might wait and get the Powerkit first.
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      02-29-2012, 07:09 PM   #36
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My car is a step w/ no cooler and steptronic, during autox in the summer it gets up to about 270 after a few runs with a ~5 minute cooldown in between. If I were at a track I doubt I'd last long before going into limp mode.
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      03-01-2012, 12:19 PM   #37
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I'm preaching

You need this with an AT - PERIOD - if you want to spend quality time at the track running consistent laps so you actually can improve:
Must Haves
  • FMIC
  • Dual Oil Coolers - I like the ER but the Stett seems nice too. They both create great air flow to the coolers which some solutions don't. This is very important
  • 100% Distilled water with MOCOOL or Water Wetter
  • Transmission cooler - OEM is stupid small and doesn't really get any air flow

More is better
  • Custom made high capacity radiator
  • Vented hood or remove cabin filter cowl
  • Limit the tuning unless you're sure it doesn't induce more heat. The car is plenty fast and you're a better driver if you go fast with stock power.
  • Meth
  • Take plenty of time after each session to drive the car at about 50 MPH to really cool everything own. This helps prevent heat soak which is a killer in our cars.
  • Some use meth to cool intake temps. I don't really know anything about it

If you aren't limping without the Must Haves you have a good way to go with your driving. Or, it's really cold where you are.

This is just how it is. Run on over to the Limp mode party at the track thread. It's a sticky in the tracking forum.
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