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2010 2011 BMW 5 Series Forum F10 BMW 5-Series (F10) Forums General 5-Series Sedan and Wagon (F10 / F11) Forum Going from e90 to F10 (maybe) Can I get some community input?
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      05-18-2018, 03:13 AM   #1
ColoradoCale
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Going from e90 to F10 (maybe) Can I get some community input?

I found a clean looking 2012 528i xdrive under market price with 100k on it that I'm looking at picking up this weekend so I can have a reliable DD for living in Colorado.

After doing some digging, it looks like the N20 can have timing chain issues with pre-2015 models, is there an easy way to check if it has a stretched chain/had the service to change it done? The dealer said he had it inspected at the oil change 100 mi ago and said it was fine/tight/no stretching or wear marks. Not sure if it is a vocal minority or a widespread issue affecting all the models using the N20 (have one 17+ year master mechanic say avoid it, another with the same experience say they've only seen one ever with the problem.) Will call Schomp BMW to see if I can get any info on it since that's where the last dealer service was. Would it be worth it for an extended service contract? Quoted at $3600 for a comprehensive contract through USAA.

Anything else I need to look out for? I have the Full iCarly Pro with bluetooth reader that I'll be using to check it out after the test drive.

The dealer is holding it for me to make the drive out to check it out on. If it checks out I'll be taking it home. I'd like to throw on a Racechip GTS or GTS-Black for a nice even powerband bump, a high flow catted downpipe, and replace the plastic charge pipes then call it good on the N20.

If not, I'll probably look at getting a boosted Volvo XC60/70 in the same year range since it fits my price point and expected capability/comfort + some options for piggybacks.

Looking it up through BMW NA there aren't any service recalls on it. Was thinking about doing a DMV VIN public records search but it can take up to 3 weeks for results.

Thanks for your input!

PS, let me know if crossposting is frowned upon, I have the same post in the technical section since I figured it would be better to get exposure to both those more technically inclined and a wider audience that has dealt with these issues.

Last edited by ColoradoCale; 05-19-2018 at 07:42 PM. Reason: spelling
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      05-18-2018, 11:03 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoradoCale View Post

The dealer is holding it for me to make the 70mi drive out to check it out on Saturday. If it checks out I'll be taking it home. I'd like to throw on a Racechip GTS or GTS-Black for a nice even powerband bump, a high flow catted downpipe, and replace the plastic charge pipes then call it good on the N20.
I don't know much about the N20 in particular but overall F10 chassis has been pretty good. If you are looking into getting power out of it, I'd recommend getting an 535 (N55) instead.
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      05-18-2018, 04:10 PM   #3
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Good to hear it has been pretty reliable, I'm not about power in this car. From what I've read the RC doesn't really give massive gains but gives a solid bump across the power band with some increases in gas mileage in eco. The numbers they have listed on racechip say a 55+ hp gain with the GTS but that is on max settings with 93 octane. Denver seems to only have 91 so my optimistic expectation would probably be a 40-45hp gain on max settings + 20-25 with the catted high flow so it'd be in the 300-310hp ballpark/stock 535i territory when in racemode and get a little bump in the already good fuel economy in efficiency mode. The GTS-Black would put it 10-15hp ahead of a stock 535i xdrive (in theory, haven't had much luck finding dynos for racechips in n20s) and the 528i xdrive is 133 lbs lighter to boot.

To make it sound more sporty (in the cabin) I'll just recode the ASD to M5 or M6 engine sounds

I just want to be comfortable while passing slower tourist traffic driving up to the mountains in the summer/winter, my weekly trips up to Boulder, and get decent gas mileage on occasional road trips.

My go-fast car is my Greddy everything t-top Z32 TT. I'll be focusing on it after I get the DD sorted out, it has some boost leaks, harness issues, probably due for turbo rebuilds, a fresh tune for high altitude(was a san diego car,) and an injector issue. When my uncle passed away it went to my grandparents until my grandpa passed away, then to my mom, then to me when she couldn't store it/get the work done it needs. Needs lots of love to get it back to where my uncle had it. Was at around 405 bhp before adding NOS for 1/4 runs (the spray system was removed after he passed.)

Last edited by ColoradoCale; 05-18-2018 at 05:29 PM.
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      Yesterday, 01:40 PM   #4
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I've owned 2 E90's and 2 F10s's. The F10 will feel like a boat compared to an E90. But I quickly got used too it. Although, I find myself in sport mode 90% of the time still.

I personally would not even consider a 528. It is just simply not enough engine for such a large sedan IMO. The 535 is slightly more expensive but so worth it. N55's are solid.
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      Yesterday, 01:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 203banshee View Post
I've owned 2 E90's and 2 F10s's. The F10 will feel like a boat compared to an E90. But I quickly got used too it. Although, I find myself in sport mode 90% of the time still.

I personally would not even consider a 528. It is just simply not enough engine for such a large sedan IMO. The 535 is slightly more expensive but so worth it. N55's are solid.
This, although it took me a while longer to get used to the size of the F10. I came from an E90 M3 which is a go-cart by comparison. 535 all the way.
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      Yesterday, 08:11 PM   #6
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Wound up getting this on Saturday: premium package, winter package, hifi sound system, and comfort package.

Will be getting the Racechip GTS-black (found a coupon code that brings it down below the price of the GTS,) metal charge pipes, and a catted high-flow downpipe ordered after the guy buying the e90 picks it up on Thursday and leave it at that.

The mods *should* put it at/around 535 stock power (assuming it doesn't actually add as much power as advertised and running 91 octane.) I'm guessing the numbers they quote are at sea level with e85 and the stars align, I'm at a mile high and no 93 to be found :/. Theoretically if the marketing isn't bumping numbers up it would be 20-25 hp more than a stock 535

That's plenty for me. Added bonuses: the 528 xdrive is 133-233lbs lighter than the 535 xdrive and gets 22/33mpg in eco + the RC supposedly bumps up mpg in efficiency mode. (seems like different spec sites give different weights for both models, anyone know where to find actual weights?)

Unfortunately I haven't driven the E90 more than on and off a trailer lol. Check out my threads on it here and here.

I'm not worried about boatiness, my Z32 is close to the same width and a foot shorter (and has bigger blindspots.) It won't be like the 90's sports cars I've had for sure, but won't be like the trucks and SUVs I grew up driving with either (I grew up a couple miles from my grandparents ranch and learned to drive with big trucks like F250s, F350s, an Excursion, and an Armada.
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