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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 BMW Reliability
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      10-02-2017, 05:39 PM   #1
diggis_tennis
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BMW Reliability

Hi Folks,

Hope everyone is doing well. I drive a 2014 528i msport and my wife drives a 2014 328i sport. Both our cars turned 3 yrs recently.

Last month I had a drivetrain issue, took into the dealership and they apparently fixed it for a couple days and the issue came up again and i had to take it back in for repairs. the week following that i had check engine light which turned out to be a thermostat issue. as soon as I picked up my car from that repair, I found out the following day that I have an engine oil leak now so I just dropped it back for repairs. Over all my car has been in the shop for 4 times in less than 4 weeks.

I have been eyeing upgrading to the new 530/540, maybe in the next year or so but am worried about the reliability of these cars. My wife's car on the contrary hasnt had any major issues (knock on wood).

Just wondering if this is how good the reliability of BMW goes or what I am going through is just bad sequence of events. Also, we buy new cars because we like the new car feel and for peace of mind for 4-5 years but looking at the recently events I am not so confident on that strategy/ approach.

any thoughts? experience around this?
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      10-02-2017, 06:04 PM   #2
visualguy
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What's your mileage?

Experience varies - I don't think you'll get much insight from anecdotes. In studies, BMWs aren't among the most reliable or the least reliable; they are at the bottom of the top 10 or so. Some models (for example, with V8 engines) are worse than others. One problem is that modern BMWs tend to be difficult and expensive to repair.

If you want to buy and hold for a long time, you should look at Lexus. Audi has also been close to the top in recent years, but they are also a real pain to fix when they go bad.
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      10-02-2017, 06:09 PM   #3
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mileage on my 5 series is 37k. I dont imagine driving a car for 7-8 yrs or so. the longest I have owned one is 3 yrs ish but that will change since I cant keep spending $5-6k on avg for yearly depression on new bimmers.
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      10-02-2017, 06:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diggis_tennis View Post
mileage on my 5 series is 37k. I dont imagine driving a car for 7-8 yrs or so. the longest I have owned one is 3 yrs ish but that will change since I cant keep spending $5-6k on avg for yearly depression on new bimmers.
I know the feeling... In my case, both my wife and I are doing it, and replacing two BMWs every 3 years adds up to serious money, and it feels like a huge waste quite frankly.

I'm trying to figure out the answer myself. I'm thinking that we will lease gasoline BMWs one more time, and then buy electric cars. Those should be more reliable and easier to fix, and hopefully there will be some nice ones by then. I'm not a fan of the Teslas for various reasons (mostly the interior, poor controls, and lack of features).
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      10-02-2017, 07:33 PM   #5
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You should consider leasing BMWs from now on
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      10-02-2017, 07:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike@x-ph.com View Post
You should consider leasing BMWs from now on
Leasing solves the long-term reliability problem (by avoiding it), but not the financial problem. It's very costly in the long run to keep leasing, and it just keeps getting worse.

I'm hoping that electric cars will make a big difference, and that it will finally make sense to buy and keep the car (even a BMW!)
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      10-02-2017, 08:42 PM   #7
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My 2c - if you want reliability for a long time - Honda. I had a 2007 crv @ 200k miles and a 2004 MDX @ 175k miles; no major issues with either. Replaced with a 2014 535 and 2016 X5 respectively. You will trade fun, performance and "cool" for reliability.

Depending on your miles driven, I'd agree leasing may be your best bet

Again, my 2c
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      10-02-2017, 08:53 PM   #8
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Re: electric cars...

What happens when tens of thousands of electric (not hybrids) cars are plugged-in to an already overtaxed electric grid here in CA? The nighttime charging scenario doesn't help with all the people that will be charging during the day while at work.
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      10-02-2017, 10:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zinengineer View Post
My 2c - if you want reliability for a long time - Honda. I had a 2007 crv @ 200k miles and a 2004 MDX @ 175k miles; no major issues with either. Replaced with a 2014 535 and 2016 X5 respectively. You will trade fun, performance and "cool" for reliability.

Depending on your miles driven, I'd agree leasing may be your best bet

Again, my 2c
well am not expecting unrealistic reliability but hey common, expecting the car to last you at least the warranty period isnt asking for much.
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      10-02-2017, 11:14 PM   #10
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Interesting subject since I bought this car last year with intention to drive it till the wheels fall off. I traded a 1990 300Zx TT that I had owned for the past 18 years, but I only put 45k miles on it during that time.

I really just got frustrated with that car because it was costing me $2-$3k per year for the last 3 or 4 years, yet I was only putting <1k of miles per year on it. Granted, part of the problem was actually not driving it enough (seals dry out, etc.), and I knew that it would cost several thousand more to get the car up to par. I never abused it, kept up on normal maintenance, but 18 years is a long time to own a used car!

Fast forward, I bought this CPO with a maintenance warranty and am struggling to do enough miles to get to the maintenance/distance milestones. I am on track to get enough miles for at least two oil changes and also brake maintenance, so what I paid for the warranty is already covered, and I feel pretty confident that based on my experience so far, barring something really catastrophic, I will own this car for a long time. I've had zero issues and it's been over one year and 8k miles so far (knock on wood).

That is my hope anyway!
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      10-03-2017, 12:25 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ezaircon4jc View Post
Re: electric cars...

What happens when tens of thousands of electric (not hybrids) cars are plugged-in to an already overtaxed electric grid here in CA? The nighttime charging scenario doesn't help with all the people that will be charging during the day while at work.
Day-time charging isn't likely to be massive. Also, there are plans to upgrade the grid.
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      10-03-2017, 02:25 AM   #12
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To each their own, but my BMWs have been very solid and reliable. My 2001 325i needed nothing more than routine maintenance for 10 years. My F10 finishing 5 years has had minor issues like a front end vibration, and moon roof noise, but fixed under warranty. I hope its as good as my 3er
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      10-03-2017, 09:19 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S1ammin View Post
Interesting subject since I bought this car last year with intention to drive it till the wheels fall off.
!
Same here!
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      10-03-2017, 11:48 PM   #14
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Never kept a BMW more than 3 years..... BUT we have a 2002 Mini Cooper S in the stable (which according to the reviews is a year to avoid), Never had major problems with it.

My buddy's 335 has been in and out of the shop for a year (I am not kidding). All was covered extended warranty but he literally drove BMW loaners for a year.

If you are going to keep the car long term, get a very solid extended warranty.
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      10-04-2017, 01:27 AM   #15
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Once the mechanics start messing with it, it's pretty much game over. The training, knowledge, patience, and attention to detail are lacking, so the likelihood that they'll get things right and not cause other damage is small. Once you bring it in for something of any significance, you're likely to keep bringing it in.
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      10-04-2017, 10:22 AM   #16
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Like others had recommended, consider leasing if you have any question of reliability of these cars. When I bought my F10, I knew I was going to get an extended warranty because when stuff breaks on these car (even "little" stuff), its expense. Example; about 3 month after I got my extended warranty (around 52k miles), I noticed that my car was leaking oil. Short summary is that the dealer had my car for a week and half (they have me a X3 rental was pretty nice) and replaced a ton of parts and labor hours and I paid $0.00. The warranty had just paid its self off and now I have 45k miles or 3 years left to have that assurance.
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      10-05-2017, 11:48 AM   #17
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thanks all
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      Yesterday, 08:19 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by visualguy View Post
Once the mechanics start messing with it, it's pretty much game over. The training, knowledge, patience, and attention to detail are lacking, so the likelihood that they'll get things right and not cause other damage is small. Once you bring it in for something of any significance, you're likely to keep bringing it in.
Exactly!

In my case regional BMW tech had no idea what he was doing trying to fix pulling to the right issue. He advised over the phone to local BMW to upgrade the software on my 2011 535 X-drive that still had a conventional steering system, not electrical which was on non X-drive models. Local BMW techs 'upgraded' non-existent software and put that on repair sheet. When I questioned him on lemon law arbitration why would he advise to upgrade non-existent software he replied that they did not inform him what model was that. So if you do not know what model you are fixing over the phone why make an advise??? And this is a regional BMW engineer with more than 20 years of experience. What do you expect form local BMW mechanics? They are trained to change windshield wipers and oil filters half-a$$ way.

When this regional BMW tech (I believe his name is Juan Lenordo who overlooks Long Island, NY) actually came to fix my car he replaced front struts and did not reveal that. I saw that few months later on carfax report that this dealership replaced them. But at that time BMW offered me a goodwill repair to replace control arms that I supposedly bent on potholes in exchange for release letter. BMW of NA has a nasty dirty business practice and they were forced to buy my car back.

So if you are willing to lease every 3 years beware that if anything happens to your car warranty repair will never fix it. BMW will do some tricks to blame you and deny warranty.


Otherwise if BMWs don't brake they are fine cars to drive I admit that.
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Last edited by OnlyTruth; Yesterday at 08:20 PM. Reason: corrections
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      Yesterday, 08:42 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OnlyTruth View Post
Otherwise if BMWs don't brake they are fine cars to drive I admit that.
If they don't brake they won't be around very long!

ALL cars break. They are, after all, just machines that are designed and built by humans.
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