BMW Mini Suspension- Has a Rear Suspension Collapse ? Due to bottom links.

Is this a common BMW Mini suspension fault ?

When I opened my garage doors on Saturday a dark green BMW Mini had been left in the car park overnight. The owner had left a note to say that she would be calling in that morning. At the time we had not noticed that the rear drivers BMW Mini Suspension was not straight but leaning in at the top.

BMW Mini Suspension

BMW Mini Suspensionpicture showing top and bottom links(off the car )

When we eventually got the BMW Mini on the ramp,(Saturday is a very busy day for tyre customers) we were astounded to find that the problem was caused by a broken bottom arm link, a part of the BMW Mini Suspension. The bottom link had completely snapped in two. This caused the wheel to pull in at the top making the car un-drivable.

This link is part of the cars multi-link system that is now common on modern vehicles such as the BMW Mini, and is used to give the cars independent suspension to all four corners of the car. The BMW Mini Suspension top and bottom links are part of that system. The lady customer can not remember running over any objects but with all the snow that has fallen in the Halifax area this winter, it is possible that she may have run over a large stone that was buried in the snow without knowing and snapped the link in two. This year has been a particularly bad year for broken springs and other suspension parts. The video that I have included in this post clearly shows the bottom link in action, it is the part that is a silver colour at the bottom of the BMW Mini suspension.

The new part has now been ordered and we will be fixing the BMW Mini this week.

More reading…

“Does multi-link suspension have any disadvantages? In short, yes… Such systems are more complex and incorporate more components, making them more expensive to design and produce. For this reason the systems were first introduced by luxury brands. That said, lower vehicle production costs and higher customer expectation have more recently seen the technology filter down to many large and mid-sized mainstream vehicles. Development of the multi-link suspension systems is ongoing. For example, Italian company Magneti Marelli (most famous for its auto electronics) is making significant headway in producing cost-effective multi-link systems for small cars. Its new designs incorporate flexible links, the benefits of which are said to allow fewer total parts, simplified bushing designs and reduced noise transmission into the passenger compartment”..http://www.carpoint.com.au/advice/2009/what-is-multilink-suspension-7533

BMW Mini Suspension

BMW Mini Suspension with its wheel “In at the top”

See the Mini bottom link on this YouTube Video…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ku37xauzYz0

This post was written by Eric Roberts..www.pellontyres.co.uk

Members of Point S

2001 BMW 325 Lower control arm

2001 BMW 325 Lower control arm- bushing replacement and replacement Suspension arm

2001 BMW 325 Lower control arm

In this video, I am replacing the lower control arm bushings on a 2001 BMW 325i. The owner complained of a clunking sound coming from the front end while driving over rough pavement and when applying the brakes.

BMW 325 Suspension Arm-2001 Convertible with a rear wheel listing badly

Are suspension problems fairly common these days? The main culprit is “potholes” in the road. Cars can’t avoid them, especially in the dark. The BMW 325i was no exception.

The car was 2001 silver convertible. The guy had noticed one of the rear wheels protruding more at the top, than the bottom. The most common suspension fault on these models, is the inner bushings become soft and worn out. This allows the whole arm to move about.

The car can become unstable. The bushes problem is also responsible for camber problems and vibrations from the rear. Instability at the rear is the main dysfunction. Causing the car to feel unstable, due to the suspension arm moving.

2001 BMW 325 Lower control arm

Another problem can be, the tabs on the outer ends of the rear suspension arm are worn away. Consequently, the camber adjuster (on the outer bushing) will not be secure. This problem is because the “through bolt” bolt for the outer camber bushing not being fully tightened. Both these fault symptoms give the same

2001 BMW 325 Lower control arm

Damaged BMW suspension arm

instability and balancing results when the BMW 325i is driven.

The repair of these problems is fairly easy to carry. The old bushes can be removed and replaced with new ones.

The BMW 325 Suspension Arm problem on this car ended up slightly different. The BMW had hit a large hole in the road. Subsequently, the car bottomed out. Damage caused to the BMW 325 Suspension Arm, was unrepairable.

The customer was informed about the repair costs. After permission from the driver, Dale one of my mechanics proceeded with the work. Another shock came from Dale after the wheels wee removed. The BMW also needed a full set of rear discs and pads.

The work to the BMW finished on time, and the customer went home happy, but a little lighter in the wallet.