BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > BMW E90/E92/E93 3-series General Forums > Regional Forums > UK > UK Technical Forum > Sharpening up steering

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      11-24-2010, 07:47 PM   #1
United Kingdom

Drives: 330i
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: London

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Sharpening up steering

I recently changed/ downsized from a Porsche 996 C4S to a 330i SE.

The car is great but the one thing I miss is the pin sharp steering feel from the Porsche.

How can one go about improving steering feel in an E90?

FYI I'm running with Sport suspension and 18" ellipsoid spoke alloys with non-RFTs.
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      11-25-2010, 05:29 AM   #2
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Drives: Alpina D3 Bi-Turbo
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK

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Tyres and their compounds make a huge difference, remember not all tyres are created equal and the compounds used change all the time even though the tyre remains a particular model. Tread patterns and tyre wall design matter hugley in this regard.
Geometry is also very important in this area/regard. While a manufacturer may recommend a setting this is usually a general setup for your average joe. Having geometry setup's for different uses makes a notable difference, for instance the setting for high mile motorway driving would be different to that of a fast road setting. High mile setup's will reduce tyre wear and the expense of handling and ultimate grip, whereas fast road will sacrifice tyre wear for handling/feel etc.
After this you are into the realms of different spring rates/dampers and ARB's but there is only so much you can do to a daily driver.

My advice would be to get the car to a specialist with a top of the line Hunter or Beissbarth alignment system.
Your profile says you are in the London area so you could give Bird's (http://www.birdsauto.com) or BMSport (http://www.bmsport.com) a call.
I don't personally know either of these two but BMSport use the very good Hunter DSP600 so you could give them a call and have a chat with them about fast road settings etc.
Nissan GT-R, Alpina D3 Bi-Turbo, F20C powered Quantum Xtreme.
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      11-25-2010, 05:44 AM   #3

Drives: 335i e91 LCI msport
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Lincolnshire

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As above - there is no inexpensive solution, but the following will make a significant difference:
1) Tyres do make a difference - many people rate RFTs for their turn in, but they are compromised when it comes to handling in general.
2) Geometry - get M3 specs dialled in. Front toe out is a killer.
3) M3 strut brace - stiffens up the front end significantly
4) Front & rear M3 ARBs - must be done in pairs, installation on the rear is expensive though
5) M3 control arms and tension struts - adds some camber to the front end. Combined with M3 geometry steering feel is much better.

Other things such as the steering rack and power steering mean that the car is compromised for ultimate feel, feedback and handling - but the above are viable and provide good results.
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