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  #1  
Old 02-16-2021, 12:28 PM
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2001 E53 X5 > Fitting Heated front seats

I have to be realistic that my 20 year old, 150k mile X5 is not worth much at all anymore, but it's lack of heated seats has eroded my enthusiasm for it as my winter wheels. The driver's seat has always had damaged leather on the seat base too, ever since I bought the car, which has bugged me. And, even though it was optioned with the "Sport' pack - the seats in this early model we just the basic seats.. But heated Sport (or better yet "premium" 16 way adjustable) E53 seats get listed on eBay for probably 33% of the car's value..

So, having done as much research as I could tolerate on the forum (i.e. if the search function didn't find my exact scenario in two attempts, I gave up) I have bitten the bullet and ordered some heated Sport seats from an E46 sedan from Facebook market place, (sadly without the lumbar support adjustment, but looking like they are in pretty good condition) for $250 plus delivery, and $18 on a center console switch panel from eBay.

I think that the forum advice points to:
1 - Disconnect the battery (to avoid Airbag warnings)
2 - Swap out the console switch panel
3 - Swap out the seats (optional: swap the E46 seat switch surround panel for the E53 one, to better suit the E53 application)
4 - Reconnect battery, cross fingers..

I got a bit confused about whether the relay is in place already for this function, or if I'll have to add it. Or even where the relay is for this function.

If it works, I'll have heated seats for these -20C mornings, for ~ $350
If it doesn't, I'll have at least got rid of the ripped basic driver's seat and will be able to convince myself that the sports seats are better..

In turn it might make me show some love to the rest of the car... (Driver's doorcard is peeling apart, passenger window needs a new regulator, I need to upgrade my $30 Chinese Double DIN stereo for a used EONON unit.., and maybe for next winter source some BMW wheels and winter tires..)
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  #2  
Old 02-16-2021, 01:16 PM
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Looks like this should work fine:

https://xoutpost.com/bmw-sav-forums/...s-added-4.html
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  #3  
Old 02-16-2021, 01:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Effduration View Post
I did in fact find that thread in my amateur searching, but wasn't sure if he had heated seats to start with. But yes this at least should confirm that the E46 seats bolt right in.

Other threads imply that the wiring is all there already (hopefully even when the existing passenger seat has manual adjustment as standard..)

Neil.
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Old 02-16-2021, 04:29 PM
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FWIW, the best way to search Xoutpost is to use google search and add the "site:" option,

Use a search term like: -

site:xoutpost.com heated seat swap e53 fitment
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  #5  
Old 02-17-2021, 01:56 AM
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Go to the junkyards and buy from there, unless $350 is the price for all heated seats...



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Old 02-18-2021, 09:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shedtastic View Post
I did in fact find that thread in my amateur searching, but wasn't sure if he had heated seats to start with. But yes this at least should confirm that the E46 seats bolt right in.

Other threads imply that the wiring is all there already (hopefully even when the existing passenger seat has manual adjustment as standard..)

Neil.

My 02 no frills manual had a power driver but manual passenger seat. I purchased a set of power sport E53 seats and the the wiring was present in my car for the passenger seat. It started working right away, didnít have to add a fuse or do any coding. I believe the seats I got are heated, I just ordered a control panel with the heated seat switches and will let you know what happens.


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Old 02-18-2021, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plasstik View Post
Go to the junkyards and buy from there, unless $350 is the price for all heated seats...



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I got mine from a guy striping an X5 on Craigslist. Got both seats and the dash/center console control panel for $50.00 cash. He didn't need to ship and I didn't need to pay for shipping. They were also comfort seats so they had power headrests. My X is a sport model X so it had a manual passenger se4at.
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Old 02-19-2021, 02:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upallnight View Post
I got mine from a guy striping an X5 on Craigslist. Got both seats and the dash/center console control panel for $50.00 cash. He didn't need to ship and I didn't need to pay for shipping. They were also comfort seats so they had power headrests. My X is a sport model X so it had a manual passenger se4at.

You got the comfort seats!?! I'm so [email protected]! I'm looking to install those! I believe the comforts seats are one of the items needed to make the X5 into the OG of X5M setup!
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Old 02-19-2021, 10:58 AM
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So... pick n pull is having a sale on their seats... $15 a seat. Iím hoping they have what I want!!


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  #10  
Old 02-19-2021, 02:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upallnight View Post
I got mine from a guy striping an X5 on Craigslist. Got both seats and the dash/center console control panel for $50.00 cash. He didn't need to ship and I didn't need to pay for shipping. They were also comfort seats so they had power headrests. My X is a sport model X so it had a manual passenger se4at.
I have been watching craigslist for a while but hadn't had any luck.
I think you did well there for $50!

I went to the Indianapolis Pull-a-Part / U-pick type places but never got lucky on the day, the BMWs I was picking over always had trashed interiors or stuff was already gone. 2 hour roundtrip each time got boring pretty quickly.

Anyhow they went in fine, and I remembered to disconnect the battery after needing the fore/aft / height adjustment to get the bolts out, but before disconnecting the electrical connectors.

But - I don't have the switch yet, so can't test the heaters.

And bigger BUT, the steering column won't adjust now. Completely unresponsive. I gather from other threads that this may be a sign of a damaged connector / harness at the connector to the seat. I will have to rummage around.

Quote:
Originally Posted by themechanic View Post
My 02 no frills manual had a power driver but manual passenger seat. I purchased a set of power sport E53 seats and the the wiring was present in my car for the passenger seat. It started working right away, didnít have to add a fuse or do any coding. I believe the seats I got are heated, I just ordered a control panel with the heated seat switches and will let you know what happens.
Like you I shall wait and see if the heaters work when the switch arrives.. An I too had a manual adjustment passenger seat, but it's clearly all pre-wired for the electric adjustment.
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