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My friend has a BMW, and though I know that there is a BMW forum out there, I'm not a part of it and thought that maybe I could get some theories here.

This is a little vague, I know, but he hears a low thumping sound while in 2nd/3rd gear. I think that it's more the speed than the gears. Any theories? His tires are balanced, and are put on in the correct direction. I don't think that he has anything like a thumbtack stuck in his tires.
 

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Coming from a Lotus, you may not recognize the sound of bass coming from the stereo system. It tends to thump rhythmically in my experience. :shrug:
 

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Just a couple guesses here, check under the car for anything hanging down or stuck to the inside of a rim and banging on something else underneath the car. It's a BMW, so I'm guessing RWD, but check all four tires anyway - possibly something caught in the steering system, or in a CV boot (not likely since it's RWD). Also check to see if it's something stuck to a tire, like a little rock... I know you said he didn't have a nail or something, but it could be something stuck in the tread, but not puncturing the tire.
 
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