I have a 1998 BMW 528i . A reliable and safe car. I've only had it for a year and the only thing that went bad on me were the brakes, but overall it's an excellent vehicle and I strongly recommend one as a first car. The parts are expensive but I think it's worth it. The fuel is not so bad on it unless you floor it all the time, otherwise it's fuel economy.
Rock solid at 150K miles. Replaced all cooling components (pump, radiator, thermostat & housing, belts) as a precaution at 140K. Just replaced the struts (they didn't owe me a thing.) Great gas mileage (30+ on highway); having a manual tranny helps. Looks good, handles great, safe and comfortable. Best six cylinder on the market. Bullet-proof drive train. Mine is Canyon Red, which looks great on this car.
Engine/drive train and suspension. Handling. Fuel efficiency. Structural integrity. Reliability. Easy to work on (really!) Parts aren't too bad if you know where to shop.
Cupholders? The Germans didn't want us to have them anyway. Drive the car and have your coffee at the diner. Less plastic in critical cooling system components.
Driving this car is so much fun; the tight steering, the way the car responds to the gas pedal, the braking system, and the safety. Everything about this car is great, although I recently had a problem with the rear window. It is the most comfortable car I have ever owned. It has a luxury interior and a sporty exterior especially with my aftermarket m3 tires and rims. I highly recommend this car to anyone who is out to buy one, although there are some problems that can be fixed.
Comfortable leather seats, heated steering wheel, roomy, fast/powerful engine, and just because its a BMW. Germans are by FAR the best auto engineers out there.
The cup holders are a total joke. I spilled coffee all over the floor while making a turn, they fall apart. The dashboard contol buttons fall off every once in a while, the stereo and speakers need improvement as well. My oil pan leaked when I first bought the car, since it it aluminum.
This is a car that is rewarding to drive and own, but it won't be cheap. My sport package 5-speed 2.8 I6 is a beautiful, well-handling, sporty and overall solid machine. I love it, but when something breaks, it is expensive to fix. Very expensive. Potential owners: be wary of the cooling system around 90k+ miles. Replace it before it goes. It will go bad and that's bad times.
Interior design and quality. Absolutely no squeaks, rattles, or anything after 100,000+ miles. THE classiest interior on the road in my opinion. The I6 is smooth and powerful, and the tech features are plentiful.
Better cooling system. Fewer plastic parts where metal parts should be used. Less complicated OBC. Fewer triggers for Check Engine Light.
I bought my 1998 BMW used in 2000 with it being certified pre-owned. My car first overheated and the passenger side window stopped working within the 1st year that I bought it,but I only had to pay $50 to get it fixed under warranty. My car overheated so many times it's stupid. I was so scared that my eyes were always fixed to the temperature gage. I replaced the radiator, many hoses, reservoir tank, water pumps, plus the sunroof is stuck, trunk only opens with the key due to the inside buttons not working. This would be a great car if it worked half the time but it was so unreliable that I had to give up on it.
When it did work the speed of it going to the speed of 80 in seconds was impressive.
I was told after spending thousands of dollars into the car that my engine had many leaks and needed to be replaced. This car was parked outside of my home until I paid it off and gave it to charity. Junk yard said it would give me $700 for it.
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