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  1. #1
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    Rack suggestions needed for BMW X5

    I have a 2013 BMW X5 x50i M-Sport....the M-Sport adds in some aluminum rails on the roof (standard is some slightly raised black ones, I believe)...pic below of that.

    Ideally, I would like to find something to carry my Soma Juice and another bike..My daughters have bikes but if we go biking as a family it will be in the Sienna. I picked up the Yakima King Joe Pro 3. It fits on my X5 but the top hooks go directly over the rear deck lid. I am not sure that this is a good thing. Also, it looks like the Soma Juice (due to the frame design) dips the front wheel down a bit much (or does it)....it also fits the Sienna.

    Guess I need to know if you think the King Joe is ok for the X5 or not....Roof mounting really isnt an option nor is hitch because I dont want to buy two transport systems.

    What would you do?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Rack suggestions needed for BMW X5-dw0_1725.jpg  

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  2. #2
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    First of all, that's an awesome vehicle. I'm thinking of trading in my 335i for one.

    Second, doesn't BMW make an interior solution for transporting bikes? I thought I read that somewhere. When I drove SUVs, I usually transported my bike inside with a fork mount bolted to a 2X4. I could carry two bikes easily inside.

    When I had multiple riders with me, I had a bombproof Yakima roof rack that held 4 bikes.

    For a single bike, look for an interior solution if you're OK with that.

  3. #3
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    Thanks. I cam from a 550i M-Sport and love it. Not sure if an inside option is offered for the X5 or not.

    This is actually what I'm leaning towards now.

    (No Hitch) Rear Mount Bike Rack Pic's - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

    I can't fit my kids 24" bikes in the trunk so if all four of us are going to be biking ill just have to take my wife's van.
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  4. #4
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    I have a X5M. BMW sells a rack that bolts (and locks) to the two towing islets under the covers on the rear bumper. The rack is hydraulic so it moves out if the way so that you can get the hatch open and get into the rear cargo area; it works even with bikes on the rack.

    It's a bit pricey but only about 150.00ish more than a Thule roof rack system.

    The only downside is the BMW rack will only carry two bikes.

    There is a BMW dealer in Maine I think that sells OEM BMW parts on-line at a good discount, I got the BamW rack through them at about 15% off IIRCC.

    I'd post a link for you but I'm on my iPad and don't remember the site name. But go over to xoutpost.com you'll find it there.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWill View Post
    I have a X5M. BMW sells a rack that bolts (and locks) to the two towing islets under the covers on the rear bumper. The rack is hydraulic so it moves out if the way so that you can get the hatch open and get into the rear cargo area; it works even with bikes on the rack.

    It's a bit pricey but only about 150.00ish more than a Thule roof rack system.

    The only downside is the BMW rack will only carry two bikes.

    There is a BMW dealer in Maine I think that sells OEM BMW parts on-line at a good discount, I got the BamW rack through them at about 15% off IIRCC.

    I'd post a link for you but I'm on my iPad and don't remember the site name. But go over to xoutpost.com you'll find it there.
    Like the one I posted above?
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by KevinGT View Post
    First of all, that's an awesome vehicle. I'm thinking of trading in my 335i for one.

    Second, doesn't BMW make an interior solution for transporting bikes? I thought I read that somewhere. When I drove SUVs, I usually transported my bike inside with a fork mount bolted to a 2X4. I could carry two bikes easily inside.

    When I had multiple riders with me, I had a bombproof Yakima roof rack that held 4 bikes.

    For a single bike, look for an interior solution if you're OK with that.
    The pre-2010 X3 had a inside rack for the back a MTB likely wouldn't fit in the back. My Nomad Carbon won't fit in the back of my X5M with the seat pushed down and the front wheel off. I could get it in if I took the bars and seat off though.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddublu View Post
    Like the one I posted above?
    Like this one…. E70 FS - BMW X5 bike rack no hitch needed 82710443424 - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

    If I were home I would take some pics and post them. But this is the rack and it will fit the 13; my M is a 12.

    I'm pretty sure it's made by Thule, most of the BMW accessories are, the roof boxes etc.
    I can find every other BMW bike rack and roof box on Thules' site, just not this one.

    I can tell you I change the lock cores out with Thule lock cores though.

  8. #8
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    I have an X5 in white that looks a lot like that. We just got it last year. It's getting a hitch receiver this spring and it will have our 1UpUSA rack on it. That's perfect for the X5 and for a crossover SUV like this.

    J.

  9. #9
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    Sell the King Joe, put a hitch on the x5 and the sienna and get a hitch rack.
    Those who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither. - Ben Franklin

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Idea View Post
    Sell the King Joe, put a hitch on the x5 and the sienna and get a hitch rack.
    The Sienna's rear is too low for a hitch to work well. I've had one on it before and it sucked. A hitch on the X5 is $650+ and then the rack itself. I think I'm going to return the King Joe for a smaller rack for the Sienna (and put two inside) and go for the tow hook mounted BMW rack. It's supposedly very sturdy and I like being able to remove in minutes.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddublu View Post
    The Sienna's rear is too low for a hitch to work well. I've had one on it before and it sucked. A hitch on the X5 is $650+ and then the rack itself. I think I'm going to return the King Joe for a smaller rack for the Sienna (and put two inside) and go for the tow hook mounted BMW rack. It's supposedly very sturdy and I like being able to remove in minutes.
    If I'm not mistaken you can't put a hitch on the M Sport. Unless of course you want to cut into the colored keyed aero bumper cover, then have it painted again.

    That'd probably only be a 1,500 - 2,000 dollar hitch.

    If you get the tow islet mounted rack you'll love it. I know I really like mine.

    If the person in the link is any where near you or if he'll ship that's a great deal on the rack.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWill View Post
    If I'm not mistaken you can't put a hitch on the M Sport. Unless of course you want to cut into the colored keyed aero bumper cover, then have it painted again.

    That'd probably only be a 1,500 - 2,000 dollar hitch.

    If you get the tow islet mounted rack you'll love it. I know I really like mine.

    If the person in the link is any where near you or if he'll ship that's a great deal on the rack.
    Yep. I'm excited. Already chatted with him and getting it cheaper than listed. My only concern is that if you go to the BMW accessory site with the part number and put in the 2013 x50i it says it DOESN'T fit. Odd. If I can confirm it's fit ill be driving back to Nova Monday or Tuesday. I've asked him to measure between the two hooks on the rack.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWill View Post
    If I'm not mistaken you can't put a hitch on the M Sport. Unless of course you want to cut into the colored keyed aero bumper cover, then have it painted again.

    That'd probably only be a 1,500 - 2,000 dollar hitch.

    If you get the tow islet mounted rack you'll love it. I know I really like mine.

    If the person in the link is any where near you or if he'll ship that's a great deal on the rack.
    check out this description from getbmwparts.com

    OEM BMW E53 X5 SAV Bicycle Rack
    Made of anodized aluminum tuning, this rack can carry two bikes- three with an optional kit. It is lockable and comes with anti-theft screws for mounting. The tailgate can be opened and towing hitch utilized even with the rack in place, as long as the bikes are not mounted. *Adhesive kit 82699408866 required - add to cart. **Not for vehicles with aerodynamic kit. ***Kit for Third Bicycle (82710309193) and Kit to Switch Rack (82710309194) optional - add to cart to purchase.
    Item # 82710309192*
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddublu View Post
    I have a 2013 BMW X5 x50i M-Sport....the M-Sport adds in some aluminum rails on the roof (standard is some slightly raised black ones, I believe)...pic below of that.

    Ideally, I would like to find something to carry my Soma Juice and another bike..My daughters have bikes but if we go biking as a family it will be in the Sienna. I picked up the Yakima King Joe Pro 3. It fits on my X5 but the top hooks go directly over the rear deck lid. I am not sure that this is a good thing. Also, it looks like the Soma Juice (due to the frame design) dips the front wheel down a bit much (or does it)....it also fits the Sienna.

    Guess I need to know if you think the King Joe is ok for the X5 or not....Roof mounting really isnt an option nor is hitch because I dont want to buy two transport systems.

    What would you do?
    looks like the straps will damage the spoiler

    what would I do? the options you don't want to do.... hitch or roof rack

    get a hitch for the x5 and Sienna and get a hitch rack that fits both

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddublu View Post
    check out this description from getbmwparts.com

    OEM BMW E53 X5 SAV Bicycle Rack
    Made of anodized aluminum tuning, this rack can carry two bikes- three with an optional kit. It is lockable and comes with anti-theft screws for mounting. The tailgate can be opened and towing hitch utilized even with the rack in place, as long as the bikes are not mounted. *Adhesive kit 82699408866 required - add to cart. **Not for vehicles with aerodynamic kit. ***Kit for Third Bicycle (82710309193) and Kit to Switch Rack (82710309194) optional - add to cart to purchase.
    Item # 82710309192*
    The "standard" X5 comes either with a hitch or you can install one. The "M" "M Sport" and any E70 with the optional aero pack. has (among other items) a completely different rear bumper cover. You'd have to have the bumper cover cut to install a hitch.

    Even then I still don't know if you could install a hitch, but I think you could. But why anyone would want to cut up the color keyed bumper cover I don't know. It would be expensive to cut it, have it finished and painted and would look like crap.

    The bolt on rack works very, very well. Just don't loose the tow islet covers, they're about 90.00 each to replace.

  16. #16
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    Wait, they made an SUV that can't take a hitch?

    KnotShearEfSirius.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  17. #17
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    so....

    BMW Trailer Hitch Kit-Class III: 71602156525

    Rear Bumper Fascia Trim Piece- Required / Vehicle equipped with M Sports Package: 71602230141

    If one can afford a $70k car and feed it premium gas for a SUV that gets 20 mpg highway...

    pretty sure one can afford to drop a little extra cash to get the BMW hitch & trim and get it installed.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by tednugent View Post
    so....

    BMW Trailer Hitch Kit-Class III: 71602156525

    Rear Bumper Fascia Trim Piece- Required / Vehicle equipped with M Sports Package: 71602230141

    If one can afford a $70k car and feed it premium gas for a SUV that gets 20 mpg highway...

    pretty sure one can afford to drop a little extra cash to get the BMW hitch & trim and get it installed.
    Has nothing to do with being able to afford it. I bike more with my family (using the Sienna) than I will using my gas-guzzling SUV. I also simply don't want a hitch on my car....pretty simple.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by DWill View Post
    The "standard" X5 comes either with a hitch or you can install one. The "M" "M Sport" and any E70 with the optional aero pack. has (among other items) a completely different rear bumper cover. You'd have to have the bumper cover cut to install a hitch.

    Even then I still don't know if you could install a hitch, but I think you could. But why anyone would want to cut up the color keyed bumper cover I don't know. It would be expensive to cut it, have it finished and painted and would look like crap.

    The bolt on rack works very, very well. Just don't loose the tow islet covers, they're about 90.00 each to replace.
    Thanks....I think I will go with the tow hook option the covers are attached to a plastic string..I assume I can just cut them and store them while in use. Thanks for the reply....Definitely dont want to chop up the bumper.
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  20. #20
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    are you sure the E53 rack works on your E70?

  21. #21
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    execuhitch. a bit pricey but no bumper cutting, looks great!

  22. #22
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    Your choices are pretty much a roof rack or a hitch rack. If you are worried about an unsightly bumper hitch, then it's a roof rack. Also, you will make your car (and bikes) much more unsightly by having a rack that sits on the vehicle. That just never ends well for either the bikes or the vehicle. You will almost certainly damage either the vehicle or the bikes or most likely, both.

    If you go with a roof rack, Yakima makes some aero bars that fit inside the roof rails that are standard on your car and they look fantastic. That's what we have on our X5 with some Thule echoleon fork mounts. That said, it's tricky getting bikes up there so bring something to stand (small step ladder would be a good choice). We installed a curt hitch on ours, had it done at a place that details trucks, and it came out great. We use a 1UpUSA rack on the X5 and it is the - by far - the best set up.

    J.

  23. #23
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    Any interior bike rack options for the E70? I'm trying to hunt down an old X3 interior rack with no luck, I think you can make it fit on the rails.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    Your choices are pretty much a roof rack or a hitch rack. If you are worried about an unsightly bumper hitch, then it's a roof rack. Also, you will make your car (and bikes) much more unsightly by having a rack that sits on the vehicle. That just never ends well for either the bikes or the vehicle. You will almost certainly damage either the vehicle or the bikes or most likely, both.

    If you go with a roof rack, Yakima makes some aero bars that fit inside the roof rails that are standard on your car and they look fantastic. That's what we have on our X5 with some Thule echoleon fork mounts. That said, it's tricky getting bikes up there so bring something to stand (small step ladder would be a good choice). We installed a curt hitch on ours, had it done at a place that details trucks, and it came out great. We use a 1UpUSA rack on the X5 and it is the - by far - the best set up.

    J.
    This is the correct answer.

  25. #25
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    how are you dealing with the parking distance control with the hitch rack?

    i have an oem hitch on my x6...pdc goes crazy with the rack obviously...so i used one of those adapters to plug into the outlet to put it in trailer mode, but i get bulb out warnings...it is driving me crazy

    and my dealer has no clue


    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    Your choices are pretty much a roof rack or a hitch rack. If you are worried about an unsightly bumper hitch, then it's a roof rack. Also, you will make your car (and bikes) much more unsightly by having a rack that sits on the vehicle. That just never ends well for either the bikes or the vehicle. You will almost certainly damage either the vehicle or the bikes or most likely, both.

    If you go with a roof rack, Yakima makes some aero bars that fit inside the roof rails that are standard on your car and they look fantastic. That's what we have on our X5 with some Thule echoleon fork mounts. That said, it's tricky getting bikes up there so bring something to stand (small step ladder would be a good choice). We installed a curt hitch on ours, had it done at a place that details trucks, and it came out great. We use a 1UpUSA rack on the X5 and it is the - by far - the best set up.

    J.

  26. #26
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    Sorry for not replying earlier - I was on vacation.

    On the PDC - I turn it off. There isn't much else to do about it. I put on the rack and take it off only when I'm using it.

    I didn't know about "trailer mode" - I'll investigate that. Now that you mention it, I do have a thing that plugs into the two inch receiver that is an LED light that turns on with the brake lights. I used to use that on our old Volvo XC90 to keep the electrical connections clean. I'm wondering if that would not solve both problems - the car would think there were bulbs there and it would be in trailer mode. I could just throw it in the storage compartment plugged in and the problem would be solved.

    The other solution that would be a little more work but would solve it for sure would be to take a trailer plug and solder resistors between the connection for the brake lights to simulate the filaments of the bulbs. If you got the values right, it would fool the computer into thinking that there is a trailer with functioning bulbs there. Then just unplug it when you're done.

    Apparently, you have to have the car programmed to pull a trailer so that it knows to deactivate the rear PDC and the traction control when a trailer is attached. Presuming that is done and you have some sort of light or resistor plug attached, the car would think that it has a trailer attached and behave accordingly. I suppose if road conditions got dicey enough (probably wouldn't be backing up at least), you could just disconnect the plug and get the traction control back.


    J.

  27. #27
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    no worries!

    there is a trailer mode...when you get an oem hitch, they reflash the computer...but for the car to recognize a trailer it has be plugged into the outlet as you suggested

    the adapter you're speaking of should tell the car there is a trailer attached, but then you'll get a bulb out error

    the whole thing is pretty frustrating...

  28. #28
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    I think not. If you have a resistor in for each tail light lead, the with that adaptor in place the computer will think it has a working bulb out there. That's all a bulb is essentially, is a resistor.

    J.

  29. #29
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    would you mind describing your set up in more detail? ohms etc?

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    I think not. If you have a resistor in for each tail light lead, the with that adaptor in place the computer will think it has a working bulb out there. That's all a bulb is essentially, is a resistor.

    J.

  30. #30
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    It can't be that hard. I haven't done it yet but am going to.

    Get a typical bulb and use an ohm meter to measure the resistance through the bulb. Get a three resistors the same value at about 1W or 10W each (bigger the better). Or get whatever the wattage of the bulb is.

    Get a wiring harness tail from the hardware store. Solder the tails of all three resistors together one end. Connect this to the white wire. Then connect one of the remaining tails to each of the green, yellow and brown wires. Plug it in and see. Should work. You might have to play with the values a little bit.

    Here's the connection on the trailer side so you know what you are hooking up.

    Rack suggestions needed for BMW X5-qu5059_800.jpg

    J.

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    Not that simple either...there is an after market adapter that has 100ohm resistors designed to work with trailers with led lights. The problem is that it is not enough resistance. If you start messing with different value it creates too much heat.

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    Rack suggestions needed for BMW X5

    If you add more resistance it will be cooler because it will need less current. Is that what you meant? All you need to do is heat sink the resistors to a chink of aluminum and it will be cool. I'm sure this will work at some level.

    What does BMW say.? They must have something for this.

  33. #33
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    my intro electrical engineering class fails me now...

    bmw has nothing to say...the shop foreman at my dealer was clueless and the corporate monkeys had no idea what i was talking about

  34. #34
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    I'm an electrical engineer.

    Worst case, just hook up bulbs to all those connections. A properly sized resistor = a bulb. If the resistor gets too hot, heat sync it. For that matter, you could take the resistors (i'd get the big square ceramic ones) and mount them to the rack somehow - it would be a perfect heat sink.

    Actually, what ought to work really well, is get small tail lights and mount them to the rack so they mirror your actual tail lights. That would help make sure no one rear ends you.

    J.

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    For resistors search for "LED load resistor" or "taillight load resistor" at your favorite online shopping destination, buy three, wire them up like JohnJ80 mentioned above. The resistors will get hot, so watch where you mount them. That should work to "trick" the car into thinking you have a trailer connected.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbikerTi View Post
    For resistors search for "LED load resistor" or "taillight load resistor" at your favorite online shopping destination, buy three, wire them up like JohnJ80 mentioned above. The resistors will get hot, so watch where you mount them. That should work to "trick" the car into thinking you have a trailer connected.
    Thanks for finding those resistors. Here's one I found:

    Tail Light Load Resistor Kit | Flashers & Load Resistors | Car Bulb Installation Supplies | LED Car Bulbs | Super Bright LEDs

    These would make sense to stick to rack with a thermal adhesive compound. Then bring the tail back to the car and connect it to the trailer hitch connection and you'd be good. The rack would make a great heat sink and it would be right there when you need to hook up the rack.

    J.

  37. #37
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    this should be a piece of cake for you then. looks like a pretty elegant fix has been found. thanks for your insight!

    2013 BMW x5 - Trailer hitch recommendations? - Page 7 - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums


    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    I'm an electrical engineer.

    Worst case, just hook up bulbs to all those connections. A properly sized resistor = a bulb. If the resistor gets too hot, heat sync it. For that matter, you could take the resistors (i'd get the big square ceramic ones) and mount them to the rack somehow - it would be a perfect heat sink.

    Actually, what ought to work really well, is get small tail lights and mount them to the rack so they mirror your actual tail lights. That would help make sure no one rear ends you.

    J.

  38. #38
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    That is a great find! And I'm sure it will work. It's basically what I was saying but this guy has figured out the values of the resistors and the wattage rating. Perfect!

    Is that what you are going to do?

    I have a hitch what was installed aftermarket and just has the 4 pin flat tail that connects to the trailer. No big deal to make the same piece to fit to that. I haven't dug into the more than in a cursory sense yet since I only needed the rack. I will now though since you brought this issue up. Next time I take it in for service, I'll make sure it's programmed for a trailer in the onboard computer.

    J.

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    i should have all the parts on monday...the resistors were actually a little tricky to locate...called a few radio shacks and the guys were clueless so i just ordered from fry's online...ordered a curt 7 way round connector.

    i'll let you know how it goes. apparently there isn't that much space so you have to remove some of the plastic in the connector. i bot 2 sets just in case i mess it up.

    so sick of the bulb out warning!

  40. #40
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    Really interested in this. Please do let us know.

    The X5 is kind of a perfect vehicle for this sort of thing.

    J.

  41. #41
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    so i put together the adapter with the resistors. for $6 and 10 minutes you can fix a stupid problem on your german luxury vehicle. seems to work. problem solved.

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    You can also buy them from digikey, they offer relatively low price shipping as well.

    One thing I would recommend is to get something more than a 5 watt resistor, as at 12v (and 33Ω resistor) you'll be pushing about 4.3 watts, however at 14 volts (which is where most vehicles operate while running) you'll be at about 6 watts. So a 5 watt resistor may be fine, but it would probably be a good idea to go to a 10 watt or better resistor.

  43. #43
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    i'm no electrical engineer...i only play one on bike forums

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by wlhighlight View Post
    so i put together the adapter with the resistors. for $6 and 10 minutes you can fix a stupid problem on your german luxury vehicle. seems to work. problem solved.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by wlhighlight View Post
    i'm no electrical engineer...i only play one on bike forums
    LOL. Glad it worked (couldn't see why it wouldn't).

    J.

  46. #46
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    For the trailer mode, I would look at a trailer light to attch to the rack and just plug it in when using a rack. That way you have a red safety light with the rack. I think some are magnetic or you could easily adhere one.

    When not using my hitch (Honda Element) I have a red light in.
    Mr. Krabs: Is it true, Squidward? Is it hilarious?

  47. #47
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    I hate bringing up old threads, but I stumbled upon it via a Google search so I hope to help others with this update. A new thread would have been redundant.

    I am not sure which brand hitch I have, but I know it isn't the thousand dollar OEM one. It came with the X5 when I bought it used. Whoever installed it had to trim the rear bumper. When I installed the aero kit, I had to dremel a small portion of the center piece. The aftermarket hitches I see listed exclude the X5M. I have seen hitches for the M model so there may be a specific model. If you want a hitch rack, it's probably the way to go.

    When we travel with bikes and want to keep them secure and dry, I made an interior platform using Yakima Blockhead fork mounts. Realistically, I can move both fork mounts to the driver side and fold down the 60% portion of the middle row and have space for a third occupant in the 40% portion.

    I go into further detail here: custom interior bike rack - Xoutpost.com

    Rack suggestions needed for BMW X5-20140309_165507_1024.jpg
    Rack suggestions needed for BMW X5-20140309_170604_1024.jpgRack suggestions needed for BMW X5-20140309_170622_1024.jpgRack suggestions needed for BMW X5-20140309_170718_1024.jpgRack suggestions needed for BMW X5-20140309_170831_1024.jpgRack suggestions needed for BMW X5-20140322_210952.jpg

  48. #48
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    Nice X5M OP.....I just traded mine in for a 2009 Porsche Cayenne Turbo S
    "The ONLY person who needs to race.....is the entrant"

  49. #49
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    If that was my SUV I would definitely do a nice hitch cut into the bumper cover as above. Get a 1up USA rack and you are in business. The last thing I would want inside a nice SUV is a muddy MTB
    Epic Flash Boris F65X + road bikes

  50. #50
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by snooka View Post
    execuhitch. a bit pricey but no bumper cutting, looks great!
    I just ordered one of these for my 428. Pics in thread not my car, but the installation will be the same. Especially cool because the receiver locks in place and comes out when you don't want the rack in, so there's nothing back there. The installation is the same as the OEM hitch, but just doesn't include BMWs ridiculous interface (which is not a 1.125 or 2" square receiver).

    F36 + Invisihitch - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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