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E46 Xi Forum
The E46 XI was produced from 01-05 in sedan and touring body styles. Powered by either a 2.5L inline 6 in the 325xi or a 3.0L inline 6 330xi. Discuss all thing about BMW AWD E46 'Xi' here.

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Old 05-07-2004, 03:47 PM   #1
getchellad
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XI Guys please respond... Driving on beach

Hey has anyone with an XI driven there car out on the beach where you would typically need a 4wheel drive, such as in the outerbanks. I'm wondering if our cars have enough clearance, and if they will sink in the sand.
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Old 05-07-2004, 04:42 PM   #2
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i've driven it on the beach, snow, puddles, no problems here.... but the sand wasn't that deep... it was pretty even and a little compact. the snow, i've plowed through about 10-12" of snow and no problems, felt some wheelspin a little but gotta love Xi.
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Old 05-07-2004, 05:33 PM   #3
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a little deflating of your tires will help you from sinking as much and provide better traction also.
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Old 05-07-2004, 08:52 PM   #4
getchellad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smoothpnoy
i've driven it on the beach, snow, puddles, no problems here.... but the sand wasn't that deep... it was pretty even and a little compact. the snow, i've plowed through about 10-12" of snow and no problems, felt some wheelspin a little but gotta love Xi.


Yeah I've driven through snow such that the car was acting as a snowplow. When the driveway in CT was unplowed this last winter in the morning, I actually had to reverse through the snowbank at the road in order to get out, it was so steep.

I'm wondering though, how well it will handle deaper sand, such as you find in the outer banks, nc. Where you have deaper ruts in the sand etc... Do you think I'll start dragging in the sand, or do you tink the XI xtra inche of clearance will help out with this.
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Old 05-07-2004, 09:04 PM   #5
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I would be extremely hesitant to take my car out to any loose sand. It definitely doesn't look like it has the ground clearance to handle that kind of terrain. But I'm no sand-driving expert, so, if people can prove otherwise, I shall stand corrected.
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Old 05-07-2004, 09:42 PM   #6
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if you care about your car, you won't do that.
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Old 05-10-2004, 03:43 PM   #7
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beautiful picture nick
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Old 05-10-2004, 03:45 PM   #8
wolf328ci
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not the greatest idea in an xi, but

if you aired down the tires, kept the rpms low and consistent, and MOST IMPORTANT, washed the underside profusely afterword, it should be fine. Hope you have a buddy with a decent 4x4 to pull you out should the need arise.
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Old 05-10-2004, 03:46 PM   #9
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I'm sorry, you want to drive your car on WHAT???

I won't even begin to list all the nasty things sand will do to your poor bimmer.

Keep her on the road and in the snow where she belongs. The XI is a road car. Nothing more. Nothing less.
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Old 05-10-2004, 03:52 PM   #10
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Haha, sounds like you want to go fishing off the beach. I think you're better off in a 4x4 if you're driving on sand. If you deflate your tires like you're suppose to, you'll lose 1-2" of clearance.
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:36 PM   #11
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So whats the XI for???
Quote:
Keep her on the road and in the snow where she belongs. The XI is a road car. Nothing more. Nothing less.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:11 PM   #12
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So whats the XI for???
Better traction is snow and rain maybe?

To the O.P. I wouldn't do it. I was in the Marine Corps and when I got FAP'ed out I was one of the game wardens on base and I had a brand new 2008 Dodge Dakota with a 4.6? Magnum V8 4x4 and I kept the tire pressures at like 18 out on the beaches and even that little lightweight (relative term) powerful (again relative) truck had plenty of troubles out on the Carolina Beaches. Granted that we used those beaches for landing AMTRAKS on, so there were DEEP ruts. Heck I even got stuck chasing someone down out there and to get them to yank me out (needless to say they didn't get a ticket) that was one of the more embarassing moments of my life...
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:19 PM   #13
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So whats the XI for???
Please take videocamera along, and when you get on beach, start recording for us...please.

After I fitted mine with my new roof--many here know I cut off my original one and trimmed a Range Rover roof to fit on...and it really looks much better than you think (will have to update sig photo one of these days)...anyway, that got me to thinking about how to carry my fishing poles...so, a few holes in front bumper, some pvc pipe with caps at the bottom and voila. Anyway, was on the beach, cruising along, and this, mind you , in just an "i"...anyway, wheels got stuck, but no problem at all. It was winter, so I had 100 lbs of sand in the trunk...just sprinkled some down in front of tires, and then it struck me...there's like tons of sand around...my extra sand didn't do anything.

The next day I returned to find that high tide had dug the car down to halfway up the doors...and covered my pole holders. No problem...new holes in roof, pipes went in...poles went in, and me and my buddies just fished atop my strong roof. You like flounder? It's still there...parking area E at Sandy Hook. Bring yours by...mine is lonely.

Please videotape whatever you've got planned!
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Old 10-14-2010, 10:00 AM   #14
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Hey has anyone with an XI driven there car out on the beach where you would typically need a 4wheel drive, such as in the outerbanks. I'm wondering if our cars have enough clearance, and if they will sink in the sand.
Car is too low for the sand on the Hatteras beaches. Hard pack datona or South Padre sure. Maybe even Ocracoke down the sand access road until you get to the loose sand. Only if the water holes have been filled in though. For Hatteras you will need a 4" lift to accomplish anything out there in your xi.

EDIT: Just noticed this was bumped from 2004. I think the OP has already found out the hard way....
Here is what you want for the Hatteras beaches:
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Old 10-14-2010, 10:23 AM   #15
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Driving your car on sand just sounds like a bad idea. Snow is one thing, but sand can be highly unpredictable. The depth, density... plus who knows where it ends up.
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:51 AM   #16
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don't
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:53 AM   #17
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I gotta tell ya, I think this is a great idea!
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Old 10-14-2010, 11:56 AM   #18
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Driving your car on sand just sounds like a bad idea. Snow is one thing, but sand can be highly unpredictable. The depth, density... plus who knows where it ends up.
Agree, I will not do this never with a BMW, unless you have a very good reason
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Old 10-14-2010, 12:13 PM   #19
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Agree, I will not do this never with a BMW, unless you have a very good reason
Yeah, like a gun-wielding manic running after me.

I can just imagine the buzz kill as your cars tires spin deeper and deeper into the sand, far from land, as you watch the tide slowly come in.
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Old 10-14-2010, 12:28 PM   #20
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yay for bumping 6yr old threads.
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