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2007 BMW X3



  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 167
    I generally agree but still use premium if it's recommended. On the otherhand, if your car is designed to run on 87 octane, you could damange the car by using premium.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    "On the otherhand, if your car is designed to run on 87 octane, you could damange the car by using premium."

    Really? :confuse: :surprise:
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,013
    Try a search for "detonation" or "premium" for posts like this one that discuss some of the various problems that running premium in a car tuned for regular gas can cause:

    shipo, "What about fuel types & gas mileage?" #228, 9 May 2006 5:36 pm

    It is funny you never see "regular gas required" in the manuals.

    Skip back up about 10 posts above the one linked for the start of that thread, including Shifty's great quote that there's a "common misconception that premium fuel is some kind of "doggie treat" for your car."

    Need help navigating? - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 167
    This is based on my belief that modern cars designed to run best on higher octane fuel have built in knock sensors that will retard the ignition timing. But cars designed to run on regular do not have a mechanism to advance the timing in the event that higher octane is used. What would they use to sense the higher octane when there's no knocking? It was explained to me by a service manager many years ago that higher octane doesn't mean higher energy. Lower octane actually burns faster. Slow burning fuel used in engines setup for faster burning fuel sounds like trouble in the long run. Not that we are talking about a major damage.
  • If the mfgr offers a vehicle that can run without damage on Regular but will improve its Power and MPG's with Premium, why not spell it out that way?

    The new 2007 Chrysler 300 specifies MID grade and says, essentially, don't waste your money on Premium. The words used include what amounts to a suggestion that "while using regular is OK, "optimum" performance is realized with mid grade."

    Several of my Audis actually rated power and mileage on the octane. This provided the data points to determine the validity of the phrase "false economy."

    Lawyers, probably, determine the wording used, hence the word REQUIRED is seldom used unless it has been determined that warranty claims will offset the law suits or better said potential law suits.

    I found several (more than two) websites that had as their number one "rule" -- "follow the mfgr's recommendation."

    I found many (more than five) websites that did claim using Regular in a car designed for Premium would NOT technically damage the engine, but several of these did hint at the loss of power and reduced MPG's that go hand in hand with this practice.

    In the spirit of full disclosure, I could not find any data that said the full amount of the price difference was consumed by the loss of power and reduced miles per gallon such behavior engenders.

    Yet, virtually all of the data says the main reason a car is said to have premium fuel recommended is that it has a compression ratio that will lead to pre-ignition (which is harmful) -- and that the ping is controlled by retarding the spark, meaning the spark happens earlier in the compression cycle, increasing pollution and decreasing mileage AND performance.

    Apparently the advent of electronic controls have offset pre-ignition's potential damage. But the issue that this causes is lower power than "one was used to" and what happens (or probably happens) is one's right foot presses further downward exacerbating this reduction in both pre-ignition and power.

    It would be my "request" for the mfgs to explicitly define power and mpg consequences of using regular, mid-grade and premium and let us all decide.

    In the mean time, without sufficient information, I would urge all drivers to "do what the manual" says (regardless of the "r" word -- require or recommend, that is.)

    The authors who appear to understand the physics and the chemistry say "you can use regular, but -- here are the consequences." At twenty gallons per week per car the difference in cost per gallon is $200 per year, the difference in opportunity cost appears to be less than that; and, some argue is a negative number.

    There appears to be a "secret handshake" we are all (or at least some of us) looking for and that is, you can buy a BMW or an Audi and despite the mfg's recommendations use regular gas without any consequences.

    If this is really true, I would imagine once enough of us figure it out, there will be at least the hint of a class action, so we "won't get fooled again."

    I suspect there is something to it more than "ego" -- for this kind of false requirement would, once it got out, also be cause for customer retailiation. At $200 per year per car, since 1973 (the year I had to buy my own gas), hmm, let's see, 34 years @ $200 per year approximately, carry the five -- well that's $6400 that someone owes me. :surprise:
  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 167
    True that. Can't hurt to follow mfgr's recommendation. Re: spark timing, retarded ignition means spark happens later, not earlier, more like when the piston reaches TDC (top dead center).
  • I stand corrected, I got carried away.
  • Do you think BMW will one day put the 3.0 twin turbo engine in the X3? I would think that would do a lot to distance the X3 from the evolving competition.

    In addition to the 3 series, BWM has announced this engine will now be available in the new 5 series AWD as the 535Xi.

  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I can't help but wonder if BMW + not 1 but 2 turbos = reliability nightmares?
  • davidc1davidc1 Posts: 167
    Turbos are not that complicated mechanically. I've had turbos in the past and feel that water pump is more likely go before the turbochargers (water pump failed around 120k miles and turbo was still good till 170k miles when I sold it). I wouldn't worry about it. Also, replacing the turbo is also no more costly than water pump, based on my experience. Having said that, BMW parts could be much more expensive.
  • jb_shinjb_shin Posts: 357
    BMW diesel engines have been running turbos for quite a while outside of US and I do not recall reading about any reliability issues on European magazines, or friends. I really wanted to bring a 530D wagon back, but oh well.
  • bosi77bosi77 Posts: 37
    Hey guys I was just wondering: I have a 2007 X3 and I noticed whenever I want to defrost my windows when I push the defrost button hot air is blown on me as well as the windows. To be frank too much hot air is blown on me. Does anybody know how I can fix this or what I should do?


  • For the posts asking about kids/baby hauling.....
    We have a 2007 BMW X3, and a Toyota Sienna 2004 AWD XLE. Our kids are older, but I gotta tell you.... as nice as the X3 is, nothing beats a minivan for moving people and "stuff." With kids, the "push-button" door opening can't be beat. By the time you get the carrier or stroller to the car, the doors are open. And you can reach back and tend to them without opening the doors.
    The Sienna cruises at lower RPMs at highway speeds. And when we get there the in-laws can even fit in, we can all go together (is that good or bad?). For camping, I can't see taking the BMW. If I had one to choose, it'd be the van for the kids. (DON'T let the wife see this, she already beats me up for the X3!)
  • cincyartcincyart Posts: 15
    I have an X3 on order, should arrive any day !
    When I test drove an X3 I noticed a hesitation from a standing stop.
    The salesman said it was due to the cold and a cold engine.
    However, I have noticed this topic on other forums:

    Some have mentioned that a computer fix will take care of it. At any rate, I am leasing
    a BMW, in part, for their reputation for preformance,handeling,etc.
    I'm also a bit troubled about CR recent "below average" reliability rating.

    Are there any current owners who can shed any light on this........I guess I'm having some buyers remorse before taking delivery ! :confuse:
  • I, too, am concerned about CR's not recommending the X3. I am thinking of getting rid of an MDX (too big) but am worried about the X3's reliability (or lack thereof). Any bad experiences as to its reliability?
  • Why do you say that the X3 blows away the RDX? I'm debating between the two.
  • x3driverx3driver Posts: 18
    You can go back and see some posts about this debate. I bought the X3, for the reasons I posted before. But I don't think it's fair to say one blows away the other. Unless you get a bad example, you can't go wrong with either one.

    For us, whatever was on paper didn't settle it, it was the drive that did. As long as my X3 stays reliable, I'll be thrilled ever time I get in it. (Although that "hesitation" is real).
  • I read all the posts on the subject. Aside from the hesitation, are there any other issues re reliability? I am going to sell my MDX for a smaller car and can't decide between the reliable Acura RDX and the unknown X3. :confuse:
  • cincyartcincyart Posts: 15
    So...x3driver, you are saying that your x3 has the hesitation from a stop and
    it is not an objection? Do you just overlook it ? Is it something that becomes less
    pronounced after break-in ? I have not taken delivery yet, but it may be a deal breaker
    for me ! I have never owned a vehicle, new or used, that exhibited this behavior. And in a BMW ?? Thought this is why they get the big bucks ?? :confuse:
  • x3driverx3driver Posts: 18
    I've heard both good and bad on the X3's reliability ratings. I've always stayed away from cars with less than stellar reliability. We went with the X3 anyway - based in part on the 4 year / 50K mile warranty. Also, the dealer is close to us, and has a reasonable number of loaner cars if the car needs work, and we got the BMW Assist.

    We weighed the reliability issue, which, at least statistically, favors the Acura. But the "driving experience" of the BMW was overwhelming, to the point that even with the extra expense (it cost more) and risk, we dove in. We thought the Acura's dash and "attitude" etc was focused more on the car, and less on the drive.

    It's all so subjective at this level, thus my quote about the choice being art, not science. All the paper numbers and statistics went out the window when we drove the two. That's not happened in other cars I've bought over the past 25 years. It happened with the Bimmer. One mistake we made, go for the preminum sound, if you go with the X3.

    Whatever you do, enjoy the ride!
This discussion has been closed.