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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > All-Wheel-Drive (Xi / xDrive) Talk > M3 rack for Xdrive



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      09-15-2020, 04:03 PM   #1
E92William
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M3 rack for Xdrive

I thought this would get more interest in the Xdrive section than the suspension one. Long story short, my e92 328xi has a lot of play in the center of the wheel position and I have to replace the rack.

The xdrive steering rack has a higher ratio than both the rwd and m3 one. The m3 rack is a common mod for rwd non M cars.

I want to see if anyone has opened these racks up to see the internals and checked if I could swap the m3 rack internals into an xdrive one. The full rack swap obviously isn't possible because of different mounting locations and subframes. However I believe it can be put together.

Here is my steering play:


Here are the two racks the m3 and Xi
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      09-16-2020, 07:45 AM   #2
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I do not think it is possible.

Let me know when you want to sell the me rack.
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      09-16-2020, 02:16 PM   #3
E92William
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Originally Posted by Torgus View Post
I do not think it is possible.

Let me know when you want to sell the me rack.
Well I don't have a rack on hand but I want to give this a try eventually. I think it's doable but I'm just thinking out loud, i have to figure out which part of the rack dictates the ratio or rather is changed about it. The pinion or the rack.
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      09-16-2020, 04:28 PM   #4
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Interesting idea. I've always wondered about steering ratios. People seem to go for lower/quicker ratios when given the option. What's the motivation? Just so you don't have to take a hand off the wheel to make a turn on the track? Or?

Quick sounds nice, but also, I don't wanna feel like I'm in a go-kart going 80 MPH. At what point is the ratio too quick? I also wonder why BMW put a slower rack in the xDrive. Someone at some point thought that was a good idea.
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      09-16-2020, 05:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewicky View Post
Interesting idea. I've always wondered about steering ratios. People seem to go for lower/quicker ratios when given the option. What's the motivation? Just so you don't have to take a hand off the wheel to make a turn on the track? Or?

Quick sounds nice, but also, I don't wanna feel like I'm in a go-kart going 80 MPH. At what point is the ratio too quick? I also wonder why BMW put a slower rack in the xDrive. Someone at some point thought that was a good idea.
In the rwd bmws the rack is of course shorter and it helps a lot when turning, you don't have to move the wheel that much to get the car to turn a specific amount. I find myself hitting my body with my elbows way more often with the xdrive car than I did the rwd. It didn't feel like a go kart at higher speeds at all.

I think the reason the xdrive has a longer ratio is because with all the added components at the front they didn't want to make the steering heavier or wanted to make it easier on the power steering pump which is the same unit in all of these cars too.
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      09-17-2020, 07:18 AM   #6
neilvan
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The steering ratio is determined but the teeth on the moving parts (the rack and the pinion gear). Unlikely those are swap-able but if they are, things will change
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      09-17-2020, 08:45 AM   #7
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What I thought is maybe I could swap both of them instead of just one but I'd have to compare two racks to see.
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      09-17-2020, 08:52 AM   #8
neilvan
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Usually with gears, you have to swap both to get the correct ratio. Plus you might have different gear diameters, teeth depth and ratios, wear pattern etc.

Essentially I wouldn't mix and match sets, just complete swap.

Going from my rwd 335 to the x-drive E60; the steering response/front suspension is just dismal.
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      09-17-2020, 09:16 AM   #9
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The steering is definitely worse in xdrive I think most people won't realize it if they haven't driven a red car.

My main concern is if stuff will swap over just fine and all seals and such will be in place. That's why I'm likely gonna be getting a junkyard steering rack or two
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