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      10-04-2011, 06:44 PM   #1
RudyP
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Winter M3 driving and rear diff clearance?

I did search for this but came up empty so advice would be appreciated.

My M3 is my daily driver and winter car. I have ordered a set of snow wheels with Blizzaks and am confident that it will generally do just fine here in Ohio short of a huge snow storm. I have always had RWD sports cars and never really had any issues with good snow tires. The one concern I have is with that fragile-looking, low hanging rear diff. My neighborhood (urban narrow cobblestone streets) does not get plowed in winter so we tend to get the two wheel ruts with a high center crest of snow in between. And then it rains and re-freezes and that center crest becomes an ice ridge. No problem for the SUVs and most cars but I'm worried that my ZCP equipped E92M3 will be dragging the diff on the ice. Anyone else experienced this? Other than driving off center (left wheels on the crest) any other ideas?

Thanks!
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      10-04-2011, 08:08 PM   #2
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Buy an SUV
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      10-04-2011, 08:20 PM   #3
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Not a fan of SUVs - but I can borrow my wife's in the case of a real snowstorm.
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      10-04-2011, 10:36 PM   #4
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I live in chicago and had that problem with my subaru sti but it was more a clearance issue in the front. My garage opened into an alleyway and there would be real deep ruts in the alley. I think you will have a bigger problem with the plastic shield just under the front lip of the car rather than the diff. Otherwise I drove my m3 all winter except during the storm when we got 21 inches. I had no problems. Granted I don't have to deal with those ruts in the alleyway anymore either though.
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      10-04-2011, 10:39 PM   #5
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Winter tires and I don't think you'll have a problem at all.
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      10-04-2011, 11:15 PM   #6
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Winter tires and I don't think you'll have a problem at all.
Do you mean 26" winter tires so his diff will clear the ruts?

OP: I think your limiting factor will be your front bumper. A cast diff casing > ice. You don't live in cbus do you? Description sounds like VicVill / German Village.
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      10-05-2011, 03:45 PM   #7
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The aero parts under the front are lower, so you'll destroy your front end shortly before your diff, very likely. Most people don't notice since they are matte black.
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      10-05-2011, 04:04 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Do you mean 26" winter tires so his diff will clear the ruts?

OP: I think your limiting factor will be your front bumper. A cast diff casing > ice. You don't live in cbus do you? Description sounds like VicVill / German Village.
Good guess. I live in the German village. Maybe I should look into 26" snow tires. We'll see how it goes. I may have to borrow my wife's SUV more than I thought.
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      10-05-2011, 04:30 PM   #9
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Good guess. I live in the German village. Maybe I should look into 26" snow tires. We'll see how it goes. I may have to borrow my wife's SUV more than I thought.
I used to live in Victorian Village and it just sounded all too familiar. I had to street park my G35 on 1st ave, it was a pita! I have friends in GV, I'll have to look out for an M next time I'm back visiting.
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      10-05-2011, 04:34 PM   #10
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I used to live in Victorian Village and it just sounded all too familiar. I had to street park my G35 on 1st ave, it was a pita! I have friends in GV, I'll have to look out for an M next time I'm back visiting.
Small world. Mine is the black E92 and I live across the street from Lindey's. Unfortunately, I do also have to street park the M3. I have a 2 car garage but 3 cars. I'm hoping to work out a deal with a neighbor to at least get off street outdoor parking. That will help some.
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      10-05-2011, 04:58 PM   #11
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That is funny. I wouldn't be able to live across from Lindy's, I'd OD on the Twin Tornado's of Beef!
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      10-05-2011, 05:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Not a fan of SUVs - but I can borrow my wife's in the case of a real snowstorm.
Here's my SUV. Go drive one. It will change your mind about SUVs



Guaranteed.

And with my Michelin Pilot Alpins, it is absolutely unstoppable in even the worst winter weather
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      10-05-2011, 05:45 PM   #13
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http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=593782

I'll let you know what happens after i take my car to the dealer..

But ice should be fine
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      10-05-2011, 06:06 PM   #14
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You know, without going out there and going measurements I can't be sure, but my thinking is that if the snow and ice between the ruts is deep enough to catch the differential, then your front bumper has probably already been torn off. As I say, I could be wrong.
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      10-05-2011, 08:59 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VVG View Post
Here's my SUV. Go drive one. It will change your mind about SUVs



Guaranteed.

And with my Michelin Pilot Alpins, it is absolutely unstoppable in even the worst winter weather
I am a Porsche owner (997 C2S) and the cayenne would be my top choice if I wanted an SUV but I have too many cars already. The M3 was actually chosen to be a daily driver/winter car specifically because it is roomy, practical and understated. It kind of already is my SUV as weird as that may seem.
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      10-06-2011, 06:32 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RudyP View Post
I am a Porsche owner (997 C2S) and the cayenne would be my top choice if I wanted an SUV but I have too many cars already. The M3 was actually chosen to be a daily driver/winter car specifically because it is roomy, practical and understated. It kind of already is my SUV as weird as that may seem.
I guess if I was in that situation, I may have opted for an Audi S4, especially if winter driving was a priority.
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      10-06-2011, 07:04 PM   #17
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I have driven my m3 in multiple horrible winters in Pittsburgh which is much more challenging than Ohio IMHO, and no issues. I have had to drive off center though on cobblestone backroads...not fun because you obviously have issues with 2 tires on one surface and 2 on another. Have to keep those hands and the throttle working ; )
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