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Over the last few days, I've changed my opinion about DSC. I used to see it as a "fun spoiling device", and used to turn it off, whenever I wanted to go fast.

This week I've been at the M5 driving experience in Spartanburg, and have seen that DSC does a fine job on wet and slippery roads. 400HP just make the rear end come out real fast, and DSC prevents that quite effectively. And today I've had the unbelievable pleasure of being part of the Bay Area Get Together. I've driven the car harder than ever before, and had DSC on almost all the time. I wanted to give it a try for real world driving after the Spartanburg experience. And it has won me over. I will continue to turn it off for straight line acceleration, since it just cuts in too quickly and to hard. But around the corners, I'll keep it on from now on. It did an excellent job of straightening out the car a few times, without slowing me down too much. For a driver with my skill level, DSC is a valuable system.

Marc
 

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Originally posted by MarcK:
This week I've been at the M5 driving experience in Spartanburg, and have seen that DSC does a fine job on wet and slippery roads.
*snip*
For a driver with my skill level, DSC is a valuable system.

Marc
I too did the Spartanburg safety school in the last week. Not in an M5 though. I went with the yearly Z3ers. Had a blast and trying out the DSC in a 330i sedan fleet car on the skidpad was definitely fun. We got my spins on videotape.


------------------
Steve
Future M5'er
 

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Marc,

I had DSC turned "OFF" but was impressed with the results for those that had left it on during our Wine Country drive.

Barry and I ran flat out as a pair on the Stewarts Point loop - I led the way going out and he led the way returning. We were pretty much "glued together" for both legs. My jaw dropped when he later told me that he had DSC "ON" the entire time - it sure didn't seem to slow him down at all.

I'm going to have to give the DSC more of a chance to prove itself.

John
 

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I too left it on most of the time (OK, except for the donut in the gravel parking lot and a few onramps
I did see it kick in briefly a few times while we were driving hard, due to dirt on the road, or more comonly, unweighting in corner due to a rise. The effect was subtle - it didn't punish me with "no throttle for one second" like it does if you really hammer a launch or 1-2 shift. I personally prefer to explore the DSC-off limits with more room than we had on those two lanes!

Interesting - I drove home this AM about 11 - the air was a lot cooler. I could really feel the difference in power. How about a cooled air induction system - use refrigeration to store cold in a radiator in the intake path system while max power is NOT required - then cut the power to the refrigeration compressor under max acceleration?
 

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For good to adequate drivers (in dry weather) DSC is a big hinderance. I find in wet on snowy conditions it has saved my *** more than once.

No boasting, but I'm an exceptional driver. I've done spin recovery from 130 mph. But.. the DSC deals with things you can't control. I went around a corner at 70 mph and ran into a lane that suddenly wasn't cleared of snow. DSC kicked on and saved my ***.

ABS controls strait line stopping. DSC controls each wheel independantly, to keep you going in the right direction. I'll never turn it on in dry weather, but wet/snow? You know it's on.

Vapour.
 

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Vapour - I don't understand. You acknowledge that DSC can save your *** - (I agree) but you leave it off in dry weather.

Have you never encountered an unexpected path of oil, coolant, pine needles, dirt on the road? How are those so different from snow? I HAVE encountered them, and they can really upset your car.

What I learned on this drive was that I could push the car quite hard in corners and the DSC stayed out. More importantly, when it did come in it wasn't overbearing. I expected it to be overbearing the way it is in straight-line acceleration, but it wasn't.

Now - I switch it off sometimes too (just ask those who were on this drive and witnessed me putting the car a bit sideways on purpose, under control, on more than one occasion, where it was safe to do so.) But leave it off whenever its dry? Not this boy. The reason they're called accidents is that you didn't expect them to happen to you.
 

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Having spent quite some time driving our DSC-equipped 540i as well as the M5, I'll chip in my $0.02.

I can't recall an occasion in the 20-25K miles I've driven these two cars wherein (on public roads and dry pavement) the DSC (above and beyond the ABS) has saved my butt.

That doesn't mean I turn it off, since (at least in the M5) it really doesn't get in my way either, and the reason we have these things is to deal with the unexpected (which by circular definition is what you're not expecting...)

The 540i is a slightly different story; that thing desperately needs a limited-slip, it's very easy to get the traction-control element of the DSC to cut in to control wheelspin.

Now, in the wet, it's a different story...we thrashed the 540i around the Nordschliefe for five laps when we got it (after the 1200-mile break-in, thank you), the track was drippy-wet around 2/3 of its 13 miles, and we were into the DSC (full yaw-control mode) half a dozen times a lap. I learned to appreciate it a lot.
 

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I think the DSC works pretty well, though I have to admit I turn it off fairly often. In most of my street driving I accelerate hard and do not like it cutting in. I generally do not do a lot of high speed turns on the street. Occasionally I like to throw the tail out going around a corner but that is at 30 to 40 mph. Pretty easy to control.

Now the first time I went to track, I left the DSC on. Track speeds and cornering loads are way beyond anything you will normally do on the street. I have to say the DSC worked extremely well and the smoother I drove, the less intrusive it was. I was impressed. Eventually as I got comfortable on the track (140 down the straights, corners at 60-110mph with all 4 tires howling) I turned it off. Either way, the car was awesome. I could accelerate out of the corners better with the DSC off, but beyond that, it was hard to notice.

When it is wet, it is a different story and I use the DSC. I probably should useit all the time, but I like those first gear launches too much.
 

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You know, i've been thinking abotu this and it seems to me that BMW wouldnt make it so that it would ruin the joy of driving. There must be a point of smoothness, which can only mean that you really are executing your moves properly. I think that learning to drive WITH DSC rather than against it can only improve your abilities. Granted, I love tail slides as much as the next guy, but I'm sure that it's not the most ideal way to go about making that turn.

Just thought i'd throw that out there.

--Dan
 

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Originally posted by greg:
Vapour - I don't understand. You acknowledge that DSC can save your *** - (I agree) but you leave it off in dry weather.

Have you never encountered an unexpected path of oil, coolant, pine needles, dirt on the road? How are those so different from snow? I HAVE encountered them, and they can really upset your car.

What I learned on this drive was that I could push the car quite hard in corners and the DSC stayed out. More importantly, when it did come in it wasn't overbearing. I expected it to be overbearing the way it is in straight-line acceleration, but it wasn't.
Well, for starters the 1rst to 2nd shift kicks on the DSC, even in dry weather. This annoys me. Secondly, I like sliding the tail a little. I've driven cars with a lot more horsepower, and I think this is a leftover side effect


Third, for advanced drivers the DSC slows you down and inhibits fancy manoeuvers. I've been in one situation where I was forced do swing a 180 degree spin and slam the gas to slow me down. I was doing 120 mph and traffic had suddenly stopped around a bend. Granted this will not ever come up with most people, but I like to fly.

Brakes will only go so far. Tailbrake slides, high-speed lane changes, and other stunts can save you sometimes. DSC interferes with most of this.

Vapour.
 

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Vapour,

Where do you live so I don't happen to run across you during one of your "advanced" manouevers?


Just kidding...

At any rate, my physics training says that you would have stopped faster in your emergency situation by just slamming on the brakes. For one thing, there is time wasted in yawing the car 180 degrees, for another, spinning your tires going in reverse gives you the same (lower) coefficient of friction you get by slamming on the brakes w/o ABS.

Seems to me the best is just mash the brake pedal and let the ABS (and its ability to let you steer) save your butt.

Am I missing something?

- Stupid
'01/Carbon Black/Black Exclusive/10-43
 

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Agreed. Sounds rather silly to me.

Contact patch is contact patch, and a car braking under ABS control on dry pavement is going to decelerate faster than a sliding, spinning vehicle - unless that spin takes you into foot-deep mud, or something solid.
 

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Originally posted by StupidGrin8UP:
Vapour,

Where do you live so I don't happen to run across you during one of your "advanced" manouevers?


Just kidding...

At any rate, my physics training says that you would have stopped faster in your emergency situation by just slamming on the brakes. For one thing, there is time wasted in yawing the car 180 degrees, for another, spinning your tires going in reverse gives you the same (lower) coefficient of friction you get by slamming on the brakes w/o ABS.

Seems to me the best is just mash the brake pedal and let the ABS (and its ability to let you steer) save your butt.

Am I missing something?

- Stupid
'01/Carbon Black/Black Exclusive/10-43
Well for starters, ABS lengthens stopping distance. A four wheel drift stops you faster if you know what you are doing.

Secondly, the lineup in my lane was a lot longer than the one a couple over. With a hard move to one side, the brakes just weren't going to cut it. So I got creative.

I do realize this sounds kind of funny, but you can do some interesting things if you put your mind to it
And know your vehicle well...

Vapour.
 

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Originally posted by bobafett:
Silly, but cool nonetheless!
Wanna come teach me how?


--Dan
Yes, Dan I teach advanced driving

But you have to come to Toronto, Canada. Mostly I do high-speed police evasion, but I can teach you a few tricks if you like.

Vapour.
 

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vapour:
If ABS is working correctly, braking with pedal down should be fastest way to stop the car. Everyone who has read some physics knows that rest friction (I don't know correct English term for this) is larger than sliding friction. This means that when you are braking with full force tires are still spinning (thanks to ABS) at the edge of friction and the stopping power is in max. So your car won't stop any faster even those tires are spinning at opposite direction.
 
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