1997 BMW 5 Series Consumer Review: Almost as good as it gets.

1997 BMW 5 Series Sedan - Consumer Review

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Almost as good as it gets.
By Rodney J on


1997 BMW 5 Series 528i 4dr Sedan


The car handles and corners amazingly well considering how soft, quiet, and luxurious it otherwise rides. The inline six is sporty enough but could use some more torque. The black interior looks luxurious and a little wicked at the same time. I took a friend of mine who recently bought an Infiniti for a ride in my 528. Within a mile he was already talking about getting a BMW. The reliablilty, compared to Toyotas, is dismal. The dash electrics, air conditioning, exhaust, 3 sunroof repairs, engine idle solenoid, window motor, trunk release, radio have all had problems (1 non- routine problem per 6,800 miles).

Best Features

Handling, quietness, driving involvement, styling, comfortable seats, 30 mpg at 80 mph, quality of materials, air filtration system, brakes, and the ability to hit 100+ mph speeds without realizing it.

Worst Features

Reliability, a more powerful engine, and better cupholders. Consumer reports does show that the 5 series became more reliable after '97 and '98. And BMW increased the power with the larger 3.0 engine. With these improvements the 530i should be almost the best car ever made.
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