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Jon S.
04-11-1999, 12:19 AM
problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now...

Ralph
04-11-1999, 12:40 AM
That's the exact problems that I've been experiencing. It doesn't bother me as much now; gotten used to it. I also have the 328 17in sport wheels / Bridgestone Turanza's. What I've been told by the service dept of my dealer is that the "steering" problems are caused by the larger wheels. Oh well, I guess it's a trade-off to have the nicer looking wheels.<p>Ralph

BerkeleyBruin
04-11-1999, 01:47 AM
My 328 has the same floatiness sensation driving on the freeway. I have to constantly checking the trees nearby because it feels like a strong cross-wind hitting the car. After driving it for awhile my arms get tired by the constant adjustment I have to make to keep the car going straight! I really doubt it was caused by the larger wheels. My M3 has 18 inch wheels and 255/35/18 tires all around. My M3 feels solid despite the larger wheels/tires. I'm sure BMW did something to the cast/camber angle to the car that might not suit the new 3 series. I hope they will have a solution to this soon. It's made me thinking about getting another car! By the way, do BMW know the existence of this problem?<p><br><i>: problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>: 328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>: Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now... <p></i>

Andrew
04-11-1999, 02:08 AM
Just so ya know, the 15" wheels were WORSE than these 17" wheels I have on now. There is a SERIOUS problem with the steering of the 323i. You should not have to continue to make steering correction when going in a straight line. Anyway, I hope BMW comes up with a fix sometime soon or they will have one less customer.<br>My car is at the link below. Sounds like we got the simular car. <br>Kind regards.........Andrew

Bryan
04-11-1999, 07:56 AM
The wheels may make it worse but it isn't cuased by the wheels. I've drive a 323 with 15" and 328 with 16" and both had the same problem. It was too long ago so I don't remember if either car was worse but it was definitely very annoying.<p><br><i>: problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>: 328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>: Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now... <p></i>

CCP
04-11-1999, 12:24 PM
I have precisely the same steering problem you describe on my 328 with 16 inch wheels. I have a feeling that it might have something to do with the aerodynamics of E46, in which case there may be no quick and easy steering fix by BMW. <p>I was wondering if a spoiler (although I'm not really a fan of the look) on the trunk might help to stabilize the rear end of the car at highway speeds... <p><p><i>: My 328 has the same floatiness sensation driving on the freeway. I have to constantly checking the trees nearby because it feels like a strong cross-wind hitting the car. After driving it for awhile my arms get tired by the constant adjustment I have to make to keep the car going straight! I really doubt it was caused by the larger wheels. My M3 has 18 inch wheels and 255/35/18 tires all around. My M3 feels solid despite the larger wheels/tires. I'm sure BMW did something to the cast/camber angle to the car that might not suit the new 3 series. I hope they will have a solution to this soon. It's made me thinking about getting another car! By the way, do BMW know the existence of this problem?<p>: <br>: : problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>: : 328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>: : Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now... <p></i>

idk
04-11-1999, 01:18 PM
<i>: problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>: 328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>: Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now... <p></i>

Kenman
04-11-1999, 01:45 PM
The condition you guys are describing sounds like the response of a vehicle with too much toe-out on the front end. With increasing toe-out, straight line stability decreases.<p><i>: problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>: 328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>: Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now... <p></i>

Doogie
04-11-1999, 07:01 PM
I have a 323i with the sport package. I truly believe that my car is tracking the ruts in the road. On level pavement, the car is fine. In a worn lane (i.e. two distinct tire tracks at a lower level than the rest of the road) the car seems to track the contours.<p>Doug

David T.
04-11-1999, 07:22 PM
<i>: I have a 323i with the sport package. I truly believe that my car is tracking the ruts in the road. On level pavement, the car is fine. In a worn lane (i.e. two distinct tire tracks at a lower level than the rest of the road) the car seems to track the contours.<p>: Doug<p></i><p>That's not surprising. Every BMW I've owned has done this. My last one, a '96 328 did, and so does my current one, a '99 328. Unless I've had a string of unusual cars, I assume it's a BMW trait. BMWs are known for their "feel" of the road, so I don't know why anybody would expect otherwise? If we wanted cars that "float," we would have bought something else. As it is, people are complaining that the steering on the E46 is "floatier" than the E36.<p>Just wait until you put snow tires on it (assuming you live somewhere where they might be needed). You'll get even more tramlining.<p>David

hsj
04-11-1999, 07:55 PM
BMW does not seem to know about the floatiness problem but the tech rep sure better fix this problem! The dealer told me they don't even have the wheel alignment specs for the e-46. This sounds like BS, though.<p>I'll keep everyone posted once they figure this out.<p>-HSJ

Sameboat
04-12-1999, 08:10 AM
<i>: problem... How many with the condition have 17" wheels?? Today I finally got the new wheels for my 323. I had originally ordered a set of M-contours only to find out they're back ordered. I could've robbed a set from the M3 on the showroom floor, but I opted instead to go with 17" 328 sport pkg wheels instead. For tires I went with the OEM Michelins (PILOT) of the M3. My black/black cars really looks trick now. Because of the "shadowline trim" effect of the 323 vs.<br>: 328's chrome, the black car looks especially cool with the bigger wheels. My only complaint is that now I think I'm experiencing what has become affectionately known as "floatiness", whereas before there was no such sensation. Sometimes I get the feeling that the car is "tracking" the contours of the road surface. I can also now sometimes feel "brake torque" on the steering wheel. Is this what you guys are talking about? Maybe I should have stayed with the 16"'s.<br>: Naahhhh, this car just looks to cool now... <p></i>My Canadian model 323i (delivered in Dec 1998) has the same problem. At the beginning (during the winter months), I used the stock 15" rim with Michelin Alpin snow tires and felt the floatiness during highway driving. A couple of weeks ago, I swapped in the 17" (7 spoke) rims with Pirelli P7000 Supersport tires. It has improved a little bit but I still feel the floatiness and the car still requires constant steering adjustment during highway driving. I spoke with my dealer service manager and he toke a test drive and told me that eveything was normal. He suggested that BMW has made the feel of E46's steering a little bit more soft than previous models to make the 3 series appeal to a wider clientele. Well, I am not quite sure about that!<p>I never drove a rear-wheel drive car before my 323i, herhaps I am not yet used to the feel of a rear-wheel drive car. But the bottom line is: I am not confident driving the car when the speed is beyond 110 kph (or 70 mph).<p>Is BMW aware of this problem at all?

RC
04-12-1999, 09:29 AM
My 323i w/sport pkg exhibits this behavior as well, especially on a road where the tire tracks are worn to a lower level than the rest of the road surface. I have gotten used to this over the 3000+ miles I've put on the car. It's similar to driving in snow where you must relax a bit and allow the car to seek its own path to some extent. On smooth roads, I find the handling to be straight and predictable.


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