Bmw X drive box

Exfarmer

Member
Location
Bury St Edmunds
Seems we have an issue with the the X drive box. This is the part where the drive is divided between front and back wheels on the X series cars but is not the same on the X5.
It splits the drive after the gearbox sending power to front or back axles according to the grip. It seems it may not be that uncommon and the result is a juddering feeling under accelleration.
Anyone else had this in an X 3 or 4 and how did they cure it?
 

Timbo

Member
Location
Gods County
This is reasonably common - first have you got different tread depth or mis matched tyres front to rear on the car. They must be similar tread depth f/ r.

Second has the transfer case oil been changed ever ? If not, do so. Only use the proper genuine bmw oil and you must have the adaptions reset after.

Do the front n rear diff oils whilst you're at it.

If that doesnt cure it, you're looking st a new transfer case.
 

norse

Member
Location
yorkshire
Are the tyres different sizes i.e wider tyres on the rear, If so you have to fit 'star marked tyres' on as they are manufactured to more accurate tolerances so that the rolling radius matches otherwise the abs keeps kicking in trying to sort out what it thinks is a loss of grip,We have an x3 3.0 diesel,wider tyres on the rear, when we bought is we kept getting the abs/4x4 and traction control lights in the dash that could be cleared by resetting but would soon re appear,it turned out to be a broken spring in the transfer box,we got a transfer box from a 2.0 x3 that turned out to have a slightly different casing so I took both apart and swapped all the innards, that cured the lights on the dash bus when driven the car sounded as though a hammer was hitting the floorpan and after a lot of googling it turned out to be the tyres that were not star marked,most tyre shops and many main dealers don't know about this.

 

Exfarmer

Member
Location
Bury St Edmunds
We Buy Any Car.
The trouble is it is such a lovely car to drive, fairly economic but with the twin turbo engine quite a rocket ship..

Thanks for all the other replies too, it does seem fairly common on these cars , I think it is probably the big engine is the issue really. It has always had the correct tyres, but I certainly replaced the rears earlier than the front and that was probably a bad move. It is now on its third set, possibly if I do change the box a new set of tyres is called for.
I am off for to an autobox centre this afternoon to get a second quote, first was about £2,600. I see a firm in Birmingham is offering to change it for a service exchange at £800 including fitting which sounds too cheap for me.
 

norse

Member
Location
yorkshire
The transfer box isn't a big job to remove,I had it swapped at a friends garage as he has a ramp but when the replacement one was slightly different I brought it back home and stripped it myself, there isn't a lot inside,mainly a clutch pack that is varied by a motor on the outside to alter the bias. we were getting large quotes for a transfer box but didn't want to spend too much on a car heading towards 200,000 miles,on 225 now with no problems but my first port of call would be tyres as they will be wider on the rear of a twin turbo car and MUST BE STAR MARKED!! and possibly an oil change for transfer box. Don't forget most mechanics are not aware of the tyre issue so will spend a lot of your money trying different fixes,I read of someone who bought a car from BMW main agent who swapped two tyres before they collected it only for it to make bad noises from underneath so took it back, The dealer swaped the transfer box then the rear diff and was still not right so the customer read of the tyre issue ,swapped them and was perfect!
 

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