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      11-12-2012, 07:39 PM   #23
gtrek79
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Originally Posted by jpwolfe31 View Post
MANUFACTURER RESPONSE FORM
(CALIFORNIA)

.......
6) Z4 296 wheel rims do not fail on their own. They are damaged by impacts which cause cracking.
7) The UK's position to replace wheel rims stipulates that only when a rim is found to be cracked WITHOUT visual damage. The rims found on this vehicle were visually damaged as could be seen by the runout ( bending) of the rims when they were rotated on a wheel balancer.
.....
One important question to all cracked rim sufferers; was the tire removed from the rim before they did the runout measurement or did they do the measurement on the tire/wheel assembly? A cracked rim has lost a large amount of it's strength and it wouldn't surprise me if the rim was bent in the tire machine when they removed the tire, especially removing a run-flat tire with a very stiff side wall. This could be why your car didn't vibrate at 70 with the cracked rims. If (when) mine crack, I will insist that they do the runout measurement before they remove the tire from the rim. I'll also do the measurement and video the indicator reading before I take the car in (like that will do any good but it will make me feel better).

Also, BMW is assuming that the wheel is out of round because of an impact but could it be that since the rim has lost much of it's strength after cracking, that the rim went out-of-round over small bumps due to the weakening of the rim after the crack and not because of an impact??

And do they have a reasonable explanation as to why it is almost always the rear rims that crack and not the front? Seems kind of ludicrous of BMW to think that people only hit pot holes and curbs with the rear wheels and not the fronts.
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      11-12-2012, 10:04 PM   #24
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They did not remove my tires before checking the wheels for out of round.

However, as I argued above, a wheel can become out of round through normal use and not as a result of a major impact. I believe the weak wheels bend over time, ultimately resulting in cracking. I caught the cracks in my wheels early and they were so small they just looked like pencil lines. I believe they bent before they started to crack.

The extra width of the rear tires and 2 degree negative camber have to promote cracking in the rear. My guess is that there may be other suspension differences between front and rear that would contribute as the rear wheel cracking as well.
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      11-14-2012, 04:06 AM   #25
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Unfortunately while the rears are more common due to camber/size/etc, the fronts crack too.. mine did!
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      11-18-2012, 07:13 PM   #26
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Well done Mr. Wolfe ... Glad someone got satisfaction.

PS. I am sure most of you fellows no my 296 story, no need to say more.
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      01-15-2013, 11:11 PM   #27
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I am a little late to the game here, but as a lawyer in Atlanta, GA, and as a Z4 owner with now 2 cracked and 1 bent wheels, of which BMW replaced the 2 cracked ones with 296s and I had to pay to fix the bent one, I am ready to prepare a lawsuit to force BMW to remediate the defective wheels for all owners in the U.S. If you are interested, please send me an email to akoplan@yahoo.com. I like this arbitration, but perhaps I can force change for us all without having to individually file for arbitrations. I already have some experience in this arena, having fought bitterly (with many others) to force BMW NA to install oil coolers in all N54 engines in the 335s when they first came to market and regularly overheated. I am hopeful we can achieve a similar outcome here. I am really upset about these wheels and we absolutely deserve better.
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      01-16-2013, 12:10 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrewKo View Post
I am a little late to the game here, but as a lawyer in Atlanta, GA, and as a Z4 owner with now 2 cracked and 1 bent wheels, of which BMW replaced the 2 cracked ones with 296s and I had to pay to fix the bent one, I am ready to prepare a lawsuit to force BMW to remediate the defective wheels for all owners in the U.S. If you are interested, please send me an email to akoplan@yahoo.com. I like this arbitration, but perhaps I can force change for us all without having to individually file for arbitrations. I already have some experience in this arena, having fought bitterly (with many others) to force BMW NA to install oil coolers in all N54 engines in the 335s when they first came to market and regularly overheated. I am hopeful we can achieve a similar outcome here. I am really upset about these wheels and we absolutely deserve better.
My wheels are still intact (knock on wood), but will send you a message if they end up cracked.
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      01-16-2013, 08:19 PM   #29
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Glad to see someone picking up this issue on a broader scale. I am sure the 296 wheels are disappearing from the road as they crack and customers buy other wheels to replace them. However, it has only been a few years and BMW still could reimburse these customers for the cost of these replacements.
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      01-16-2013, 10:34 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by DrewKo View Post
I am a little late to the game here, but as a lawyer in Atlanta, GA, and as a Z4 owner with now 2 cracked and 1 bent wheels, of which BMW replaced the 2 cracked ones with 296s and I had to pay to fix the bent one, I am ready to prepare a lawsuit to force BMW to remediate the defective wheels for all owners in the U.S. If you are interested, please send me an email to akoplan@yahoo.com. I like this arbitration, but perhaps I can force change for us all without having to individually file for arbitrations. I already have some experience in this arena, having fought bitterly (with many others) to force BMW NA to install oil coolers in all N54 engines in the 335s when they first came to market and regularly overheated. I am hopeful we can achieve a similar outcome here. I am really upset about these wheels and we absolutely deserve better.
I like this. I dont have the 296 rims but I am glad that others may find some relief. There are simply too many people with problems for it to be a coincidence.
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      07-26-2013, 02:15 PM   #31
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Just got back from the dealership and they gave me the wheels got damaged by pot holes and speed bumps story, which i pretty much expected.
Both rear wheels are cracked
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      07-27-2013, 01:59 AM   #32
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Just got back from the dealership and they gave me the wheels got damaged by pot holes and speed bumps story, which i pretty much expected.
Both rear wheels are cracked
I'm pretty convinced that there is an element of validity to the pothole story with these ultra low profile tires and run flats. Los Angeles is rife with pot holes and quite a few of my friends who have sports cars complain about ruining rims all the time. I myself hit a pot hole in the dead of night with my 326 wheels. The very next time I was at the dealer, they noticed a flat spot on the wheel that took the hit. It wasn't cracked, but it was noticeably flat once I saw it up on the rack. I just remember being shaken to my bones when I hit that pot hole at about 50 miles an hour. Lucky me, I have the comprehensive wheel warranty and they got me a brand new wheel at no cost out of pocket. Still, I honestly think hitting pot holes at speed with these low profile tires and wheels does them no good.
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      07-31-2013, 10:55 PM   #33
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I went thru the same thing with my rear wheels. Fronts were fine.

I printed this thread out and took it to the service manager. They took off $250. Peanuts really, but whatever.
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      08-01-2013, 09:51 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrewKo View Post
I am a little late to the game here, but as a lawyer in Atlanta, GA, and as a Z4 owner with now 2 cracked and 1 bent wheels, of which BMW replaced the 2 cracked ones with 296s and I had to pay to fix the bent one, I am ready to prepare a lawsuit to force BMW to remediate the defective wheels for all owners in the U.S. If you are interested, please send me an email to akoplan@yahoo.com. I like this arbitration, but perhaps I can force change for us all without having to individually file for arbitrations. I already have some experience in this arena, having fought bitterly (with many others) to force BMW NA to install oil coolers in all N54 engines in the 335s when they first came to market and regularly overheated. I am hopeful we can achieve a similar outcome here. I am really upset about these wheels and we absolutely deserve better.


I'm happy to see this. So far (knock wood) I've been fairly lucky. Only one cracked rim on my 335i (style 230) that was replaced under a purchased wheel and tire warranty and, to date, no cracked 326Ms on my Z4. I know the 326Ms aren't immune and I've been keeping an eye on them, but I'm under factory warranty until January 2017 so there's a long road ahead. It'd be nice to see BMWNA's policy changed with respect to this.

Congrats to OP.
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      08-02-2013, 02:16 PM   #35
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Quote:
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I'm happy to see this. So far (knock wood) I've been fairly lucky. Only one cracked rim on my 335i (style 230) that was replaced under a purchased wheel and tire warranty and, to date, no cracked 326Ms on my Z4. I know the 326Ms aren't immune and I've been keeping an eye on them, but I'm under factory warranty until January 2017 so there's a long road ahead. It'd be nice to see BMWNA's policy changed with respect to this.

Congrats to OP.
I am in Calgary, too!
My 335 had no problem at all but I had one bent 296 rim on my 09' Z4. Calgary BMW insist it's the road problem (Potholes) NOT their wheel quality so I paid $800 for one rim.
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      08-21-2013, 05:29 PM   #36
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I have to reply to a post to activate my forum account. I'm a pissed off noobie here with 3 cracked OEM 296's, 2 rear, 1 front, on a CERTIFIED PRE-OWNED Z4. I have a story to tell but I'll do that in a new thread when my account is up and running.

Later.......
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      08-22-2013, 06:06 PM   #37
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I am in Calgary, too!
My 335 had no problem at all but I had one bent 296 rim on my 09' Z4. Calgary BMW insist it's the road problem (Potholes) NOT their wheel quality so I paid $800 for one rim.
The only way to fight it is if you threaten to take them to Small Claims Court and there is a discovery blah blah blah.

If you're not prepared to do that then bend over and take it up the ...
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      08-23-2013, 03:37 AM   #38
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Smile my god! good job

In France, one friend... on Z4sdrive 35i 296 RFT







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      08-23-2013, 11:07 AM   #39
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Ouch. Mine is still good. Knock on wood.
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      04-03-2014, 02:47 PM   #40
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I just got finished putting new tires on my '09 Z4. We found that both rear wheels (296) are cracked. One had two cracks and the other 5 cracks! Looks like I'll be going to the dealer for two new wheels. This really sucks.
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      04-04-2014, 01:50 AM   #41
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Get rid of the run flats...they're stiff and they lead to the cracking.
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      04-04-2014, 08:26 AM   #42
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293 has crack issue too, I just found out myself when my rear tires kept deflating every few days, took it to dealerhsip and they found that there are hairline cracks. Dealership won't replace them, instead gave me a quote to repair them. Screw that, I already had bought aftermarket wheels and just waiting for the runflats on the OEM wheels to wear out and replace the wheels and tires. This gave me a reason to go with my aftermarket wheels and PSS. For me it made a big difference in ride quality and I no longer cringe when going over small depression/potholes in the roads I travel.
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