I bought this car new. Fun to drive, hugs the road, looks good. After 4 yrs problems: A/C blower, steering wheel return, coolant thermostat, exhaust sensor, pulse generator, broken bleeder screw, leaking P/S supply hose, plastic radiator split down side - replaced(big bucks). The car is now 10 yrs old but only 64,000 mi. Just spent $1728 for valve cover gasket leak, crank case vent valve, hoses.
Repairs needed per BMW serv rep: fuel inj serv, all rad hose replacement, engine oil pan leak, engine drive belts, thrust arm bushings torn, engine mounts,alignment-cost $4642!!
I'll never again buy a BMW. The car handles beautifully on the road. In the shop, bend over and hock your 1st born!!
Drink holders are flimsy, quickly break and will not retract- not worthy of BMW engineering. CD player needs to be inside the dash so you don't have to stop the car and go to the trunk the change CDs.
The maintenance record is very poor.
I have had Japanese cars before, drove them for 10 years with over 100,000mi with few problems.
The BMW oil leaks, gasket replacements, etc. mentioned above are excessive as well as the costs of repair are prohibitive.
I bought my wagon at 1.5 years old from a BMW dealer. It had 10,600 miles & was CPO. 9 years later it has just under 30K miles, & still looks & drives like new. I had 2 repairs under warranty; a brake sensor, & a broken door handle. At warranty end, I started taking it to an excellent indie bmw shop. During that time, the only repairs have been: the tailgate latch failed twice, costing $200-$300 each time. And now A/C needs recharge or repair, I'm a bit nervous about that. But all in all, to spend only around $1k in 9 years on maintenance & repairs on an expensive Euro car I consider amazing. (I owned a used Range Rover-under warranty!-it cost me that in one year).
Very very nice, solid car with 6 airbags. The wagon is great, you gain all the hauling capacity w/o giving up any performance. Very nice interior, clean looking, with fairly simple controls (pre-"i-drive"). Non run-flat tires (with a spare!). "Fit & finish", & build quality, are exemplary.
I'm amazed at the # of people here still taking their 10 y.o. bmw to a dealer for a repairs. Folks, do yourselves a favor, find the best indie bmw shop in your area, even if the closest one is an hour away.
I'm a 60 year-old high performance car guy. I've had Hot Rods, sports cars, Mercedes (500SL), BMWs & Porsches (including a wicked 914 w/a 400 HP 350 Chevy V8), you get the picture. Our 2000 528i is the most reliable & fun to drive sedan I've ever owned. I'm 6'4" & 220 lbs & this is so much more comfortable than any of our past Mercedes or BMWs. Excellent handling; quick & nimble; great gas mileage; ideal for long trips. Never get tired of driving it. Huge trunk & way more practical than a cumbersome 7 series. My wife, kids & grandkids are tall & there's plenty of room in back for 3 passengers. This is a fantastic car. In a 100K miles I've only replaced tires, brakes & an alternator!
Extension "wings" on the sun-visors. I'm over six feet tall and have the seat all the way back... and the sun- visor does not help when you're as tall as I am. An aftermarket "extension" from Pep Boys solved this minor problem.
Bought the car used, unfortunately it had rear axle problems so we went through 3 sets of tires before it was found but after that problem was fixed everything is running perfectly. The car originally had 70k miles on it and there is now 111k miles on it and we have not had to do anything but routine maintenance on her. I plan to drive her until she dies. Mom has an '86 3.25es and it still runs like it did the day she bought it, so I'm hoping for a long life.
Wonderful car, looks great, drives better. V8 thirsty around town but not bad (25mpg) on hwy, 19mpg avg over 40k mi. I'll dare to say 6-spd manual has long-ish throws & clutch delay valve (CDV) makes smooth driving tough. Bought used w/80k, now have 117k. Repairs: Final stage unit (FSU) for climate control (installed myself), coolant reservoir (recently; cooling system had been gone through before I bought). Now needs brakes (again--they were replaced just before I purchased), some clunking from front end (but steers/rides fine). What other car can one find for under $10k w/this much gravitas, ability & quality? Much prefer to newer 5-series. Still stylish/impressive to clients. A classic.
build quality interior materials and design ride/handling compromise is just about perfect quiet interior fold-down rear seats (optional, VERY desirable)
cupholders (of course) cooling system components (but not too $$ and can replace yourself) valley pan gaskets on V8 remove CDV on manual trans cars (easy/cheap fix)