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Old Codger

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About Old Codger

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    G31 X Drive 530d
  1. Old Codger

    TDI Tuning Box

    I had my 2010 520D Biz Ed touring remapped by superchips using Bluefin. Logic being it was a company car that went to the dealers till 120K. Used to put the original map back on at service time which was dead easy to do taking maybe 2 mins. Bluefin was installed at 80k miles and I subsequently ran her to 170K miles but not without issues however! Oil changed every 8K with the regular servicing carried out by a very reputable independent after 120K. Original chains remained intact and never rattled. The map itself was great, it transformed the car, I truly had the choice of improved economy (10% +) or additional performance. Totally driveable with a massive surge of power available between 1800 and 4000 rpm. (Pointless reving any further). Slight sensitivity to fuel, Shell V power was found to be the preferred motion lotion to maximise the additional grunt. I reckon the peak BHP went up to around the 220+ mark and torque went off the scale. 0 – 60 dropped to from 7.5 seconds to 6.0 with the 245/35/19 Goodyears only just managing to keep traction on dry road. In sport she was an absolute hoot eating pimped Corsas and Hondas for breakfast. Motorway driving became effortless with the 75 to 90 overtaking/pulling out dash becoming almost instantaneous. To be frank my 530D X drive isn’t a lot quicker, it just grips better! Now the downsides: Turbo blew at 135K with subsequent oil loss taking the DPF with it. Ripped a rear half shaft out. Ripped various rear suspension bushes/mounts on two occasions Sheared the propshaft clean in two! Ripped the engine mounts both sides. Ripped gearbox mount. Gearbox failed at 170K – despite oil changes. All in all it did what it said on the can, a very well sorted map providing seamless performance. The car wasn’t built to handle the extremes of power provided, hence the above fails. Don’t fit a box, go the OBD route. The difference is worth it but you will break the drivetrain.
  2. Old Codger

    Sisters.jpg

  3. Old Codger

    Nice Ass.jpg

  4. Abusing a 2010 E61 520d Biz Ed for 8 years results in it becoming “beyond economic repair”. It broke my heart to admit the love affair had ended. To ease the pain of my bereavement I bought a 2019 G31 with so much electronic wizardry packed into it a 62-year-old struggles to get his head around it first hit! The E61 MK1 iDrive does pretty much the same as that of the new car. However, the combination of colourful presentation, fancy graphics, breadth and depth of detail you can drill into does make it hard to assimilate on first acquaintance. The “auto” functions and driver aids in the car really take some adapting to they’re a quantum leap from the 2000s when the E60s then cutting edge technology was conceived. I’d liken it to jumping from when I was a lad in the 70s (windows winders worked by hand, compact cassettes and inertia seatbelts were optional extras etc), straight into an E60. The old bus has a 2.0 N47 with six speed steptronic, roughly 180 BHP as stock but with added chip tune ramping it to around 220/225 BHP. Chipping (depending on severity) of course gives you a choice of better fuel economy or more horses, if it happens to be diesel lots and lots of extra torques as well. The torques come with a caveat, I used them a lot and the drivetrain has paid the ultimate price at 165K miles. The E61 was no sluggard, standard 0-60 of 7.6 secs dropped to about 6.0 plus a bit. For a car weighing around 1800kgs that’s quick and many a kid in a pimped Corsa, Audi and VW has gazed up its rapidly receding tailpipe. Motorways? Even better. kickdown into 5th at around 70/75 mph straight onto peak torque with 90 taking rather less than the tailgater expects. So, you’re getting the idea, I’ve been flying a bimmer for a while, skipped a generation and then went up a litre. Test driving on red & whites with an aftershave dripping, salesmen does restrict you from exploring the dynamic envelope somewhat. The dealers wouldn’t loan one for a weekend, so I had to lull the guy into a false sense of security before seizing an opportunity to nail the proverbial to the metal. He squealed, the tyres didn’t, straight six growled and in a road to Damascus moment I realised the new 5 series is a seriously competent car. 7 days and several £10s of 000s later an M sport 530d Touring sat on my drive. Yes, its quick, not compared to a GTR, Tesla or Mercan quick, but for a shed on wheels it’s quick. Surprisingly most of the buttons, levers and things to twiddle on stalks are in the same place and do much the same things as the E61s do. That helped me greatly adapting to the new car. The seats are comfier and more supportive, but the heating can’t be biased to back or squab. The gap between the throttle and brake is smaller, my work boots catch, there is less room in the rear behind the front seats, the roof is narrower so I catch my head, the glass area is smaller and the pillars thicker creating more blind spots. So not all positive. I’ve got a sunroof to let the fag smoke out, it only opens a bit, so no chance of a sun tan. The electric tailgate is slow but useful if your hands are full, the electric parcel shelf and rear seat release feature are a boon and the boot stowage for the parcel self an excellent idea. The dog guard is an utter pain to release, the old style worked far better. The E61 had what is effectively another boot under the load deck where the spare wheel lived pre runflats. A really useful cubby hole now missed. Cabin stowage space is more plentiful and better thought out. Aesthetically its lovely and bang up to date with similar high-quality materials to the E60 throughout. To sum up, it’s a new version of the old one, familiar as a favourite pair of old jeans tailored for today’s tastes. Adaptive lights are phenomenal, E61s used tallow pre LCI then switched to carbide. Kinect in the display? Gimmick what’s wrong with the steering wheel buttons. Digital instruments, great but not fully customisable in mine. HUD, incredibly useful except when driving into low sun when it disappears in the glare. X drive. See comment further down but if your middle name is sasquatch it’s essential with the amount of grunt on tap. Collision warnings, adaptive cruise, nodded off at wheel alert and gone over white line alert – can’t be doing with. Upside down dead in a ditch phone home feature? WTF! Adaptive suspension? Jury still out, comfort does me. Driving dynamics are where old and new really part company. Ride and handling are exemplary, truly sublime in fact. The E61 even though air sprung was choppy on its 19” 35 profiles except fully loaded or at speed when it began to glide. Cabin engine noise although muted was definitely diesel with an element of tyre roar regardless of surface. In the G31 I hear my own heat beat. X drive turning circles by comparison are huge, I need to retrain for turning points especially when reversing into tight spots. The PDC works about the same but the fancy graphic takes some interpretation, no camera on mine, don’t know why. The steering is slightly disappointing in terms of feedback but is light, incredibly precise, stable and responds instantly to every input. It leaves the E61 in the middle ages. Gears, there are 8 and they match the engine perfectly whereas the E61s 6 couldn’t make the best use of the powerband and could end up hunting according to throttle load. Sport and manual with the gear stick are the same to use but I find the G31 steering wheel paddles a little too close to the stalks for my fat fingers. The engine is a truly wonderous thing, a gentle 6-cylinder purr permeates the cabin with just a hint of aggression. It’s a pure sensory delight to my ears. The E61s N47 roared and frantically clattered whereas this six just drops an unfussed octave delivering its extra silky smooth 40/50 hp totally without drama. Reminds me of my old E12 525. The E61 has been driven on unrestricted autobahns and whilst it could reach almost 140mph it wasn’t a pleasant experience. Acceleration would fade markedly after 120 and by 130 the engine had to work hard to keep pushing on. Couple that with rising wind noise, a slight feeling of instability and it wasn’t a place to stay. I took the G31 down my local airstrip but unfortunately kept running out of tarmac. At 140 I got the impression there was a lot more to give. The electronics seemed to stiffen up the suspension and steering as the speed rose. Firmly rooted to the ground, not particularly noisy, very stable, confidence inspiring and drama free. Only a few short laps but enough to reveal the competency of this car. (Note to self: Must holiday in Bavaria this year) My wife is a founder member of the Miss Daisy school of motoring, anything above 10mph below a speed limit induces a funny turn. After 10 mins in the passenger seat she remarked “It’s just like being on an intercity train” e.g., No roll, no bumps, no lurching. A Result! I was almost speeding too. Her impressions of driving it were, how small and nimble it felt, how it could “run away with you” and “it’s so much easier than my Focus” – sorry Ford. The fuel economy I suspect will bear no resemblance to the quoted figures, it’s too early to build a true picture. I suspect my 80-mile commute will give 38 mpg. Sensitivity to fuel, E61’s love Shell hate supermarket: unknown. Tyre life: unknown. Oil will get an intermediate at 8k as I intend to keep it. What falls off and breaks will be revealed in the fullness of time but guaranteed it won’t be cheap to fix. Every journalist review of the car I’ve read has been overwhelmingly positive – for once I agree with the lying toe rags, it is almost perfect. Like in Mad Max 2, the last of the interceptors. Grab one before diesel is banned.
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