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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I got my car back today after having a number of its issues seen to (see my assorted threads). One of these was its leftward drift. It's had a new rear subframe, and following KDS-ing after that, new front shocks. I'm told that the KDS after that showed the car to be "true", and it would now only pull to the camber.

Hooray!

So I've been on a good long (80 mile) drive to find out. And I wasn't convinced; nor was the young lady I happened to have in the passenger seat ("it feels like the steering wheel pushes"). So after trying to find some adverse cambers and driving in opposing directions along assorted roads I decided that what I really needed was an environment where I had a large expanse of flat tarmac available to me. Unfortunately the runway of East Midlands Airport isn't available as a testing environment, so I was forced to resort to the next best thing - the car park of a service station on the M1. Now, I accept that nowhere is goingto be Billiard Table flat, but this car park is fairly close...

I tried driving one way, and then the other up an aisle. Most trips exhibit a left pull; even against what I perceive to be a slight right camber. But the circumstances are not controlled - I'm starting at different ends of the aisle. So I hit upon this idea:

Start from the same place. Take one run forward; and then the next backward. If the car sticks with the camber, the backward trip should exhibit the same deviation as the forward trip - should it not?

Unfortunately, both forwards and backwards trips deviated to the left side of the vehicle. The reverse trip, in the eyes of the "impartial observer"(!) was even worse... Now I've repeated this a couple of times across different aspects of the car park (north-south and east-west axis). Always to the left.

So... before I start really rattling cages, are there any faults in my logic or testing regime (as far as I can control across a car park at 11pm on a friday night)?

Any other thoughts, comments?
 

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If it's of any reassurance, I'm in exactly the same position as you. I've checked and checked again, but the veer to the left is still there. Drives you nuts looking for concrete evidence doesn't it!

It's had the new front shocks, KDS etc done to it. There have been other faults-a-plenty. I've had enough of the whole thing! Monday is D-day.

My dealer let slip that "hundreds" of left-pull Minis were turned out of the production line.

I'm not saying I don't like the car, because I think it's great. It's just the defects it suffers from that mean I have lost faith in this particular one. Looks like I'm not alone in this.
 

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The End of the Tether?

BMW do not have a clue as to how thaey will sort out this mess. They told my dealer that the new suspension designed to cure the problem has made things worse on some cars.
The EVO article just backs this up. I fear the fault is in something that is so fundamental to the whole car that it would break the bank for BMW to rectify it.

A 21st Century car that will not drive straight? Henry Ford must be laughing in his grave.:mad:
 

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I used to think my MINI pulled/drifted to the left, but now i'm not so sure. I've now done about 2000 miles and it seems to be a lot better. I tested it by going down a motorway in the fast lane at about 70mph. I then let go of the steering wheel slightly and the car just went straight forward. Whether it has something to do with the speed of the car, I don't really know.
 

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When I got my MINI I asked my dealer whether I could expect a pull to the left and he 'admitted' there was a run of faulty ones, with some of the suspension struts being put on the wrong way.

The first thing I felt for was a pull and it defintely wasn't there, pretty straight.

Now almost 2500 miles later it's picked up a drift, at all speeds.

Does this point to something that wears?

Jon E
 

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I too used to think mine pulled to the left, but I tested it a couple of times at the weekend and I reckon it is the camber of the road..

I drove in the middle of the road and it went dead straight.... When on the right hand side it went right.. Therefore mine is just a gentle drift caused by the camber of the road...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Its a pull to the left...

...and then a steering wheel tug to the right.

I called my dealer this morning. They've stated that there is nothing more that they can do about it until they get a suggested approach from MINI UK. I had a short discussion with the chap from servicing, and he conceeded during his conversation that *none* of the MINIs that he has driven drive straight, and all pull to the left to a greater or lesser extent. Some are indeed "unfixable" with the suggestion that it should be lived with.

Seriously unhappy - been on the 'phone to BMW Customer Services who are "investigating" - still waiting for a reply from them.
 

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try driving in the left hand lanes

batemano said:
I used to think my MINI pulled/drifted to the left, but now i'm not so sure. I've now done about 2000 miles and it seems to be a lot better. I tested it by going down a motorway in the fast lane at about 70mph. I then let go of the steering wheel slightly and the car just went straight forward. Whether it has something to do with the speed of the car, I don't really know.
And the outside lane of your particular Motorway didn`t have any camber for drainage into the central reservation?

Camber there would of course be quite likely to negate any tendency to drift left on the nearside lane of a normal single carriageway in the UK!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Left Latest

Well, after writing a letter to my dealer threatening to reject the car because of its leftward pull despite the fix I have just spent a lunch hour with my salesman and the dealership's Technical Manager. The Technical Manager, after a drive, stated "It Veers".

They now want BMW Regional to look at it.
 

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Does the original Mini drift or veer? My old Z weighs the same as a MINI, wheelbase is nearly identical. The Z is RWD, but that shouldn't make much difference. FWD cars can have "torque steer" but the MINI has equal length drive shafts that is supposed to prevent it. I can drive with one finger on the wheel, virtually no drift at all, only slight to the right on roads with a high camber. If I drive down the crown on my street, it goes straight as an arrow. This is on a 30-year-old car that has NEVER been in for an alignment. Let's hope BMW takes this seriously and finds out what the cause of the drift is, rather than try to fob everyone off with "well, it's normal" or "all cars do that."
 
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