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How To Maintain A Rear-Wheel Drive BMW

How To Maintain A Rear-Wheel Drive BMW | Elite Auto Repair

Owning a BMW is a testament to your taste for performance and engineering excellence. However, to keep this driving pleasure intact, specific maintenance is essential because most models are RWD (rear-wheel drive).

Why Do Rear-Wheel Drive Vehicles Require More Maintenance

RWD BMWs are designed for performance, but this comes with increased maintenance demands. The rear wheels handle power delivery and acceleration, leading to more wear and tear compared to front-wheel drives. Weight distribution and mechanics in RWD BMWs require more attention to detail, particularly in areas like tire wear, brake balance, and drivetrain components.

1. Tire Care

Tire maintenance is paramount in RWD BMWs. Due to the power being delivered to the rear, tires on these vehicles can wear unevenly. Rotations, balancing, and alignments are vital. It's also crucial to monitor tire pressure and tread depth to ensure optimal traction and handling. 

With that being said, there is one thing you have to do. Change the tires according to the season - winter tires for cold months and summer tires for warmer ones. Everything else becomes obsolete if this particular service isn't performed.

2. Brake System Checks

The brake system in a rear-wheel drive BMW can experience uneven wear, with rear brakes working harder during dynamic driving. Frequent inspections of brake pads, discs, and fluid are essential for safe operation. Ensure that the brake system is checked during every service appointment.

3. Differential Service

The differential is key in RWD vehicles - especially if it has a locking function. It facilitates power distribution to the rear wheels, making its maintenance crucial. Differential fluid should be checked and changed as recommended by BMW to prevent wear and ensure smooth power delivery.

4. Regular Alignment

Wheel alignment in RWD cars is a little different than in others. Front-wheel drive cars use the front wheels for steering and power output, allowing for more stability if something isn't right with one or more of the components. In rear-wheel drive cars, the steering is done by the front wheels, meaning that everything in the back should be properly aligned. That makes frequent alignment more than mandatory.

5. Suspension System Care

The suspension system in RWD BMWs is designed for performance driving, which can put extra strain on components. For this reason, it's important to regularly check shocks, struts, and bushings to maintain ride quality and handling precision.

Most Problematic Component in RWD BMWs

In Rear-Wheel Drive (RWD) BMWs, one of the most problematic areas often lies within the rear axle components. This includes the differential and wheel bearings, which are integral to the vehicle's power delivery and handling capabilities. The differential, responsible for distributing engine power to the wheels, can be particularly susceptible to wear due to the constant stress of transferring high torque levels.


When it comes to BMW maintenance and repairs, the team at Elite Auto Repair is second to none! Book an appointment, and we will take care of whatever services your Bimmer requires.

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