I bought this car three years ago and I've generally been quite satisfied. It gets decent mileage overall and over 30mpg on the road. New passengers not aware of the brand will often ask what kind of car it is because it's so comfortable. Since the car has had very little wear its frequently confused with a newer car since the basic body design remained the same until 2010.
It does have some flaws. One of these is that the I-Drive computer occasionally doesn't boot at start up and leaves me without a radio until it does. The radar detection often takes a while to shut off after leaving a parking space. However in the basics like comfort and performance the car is great.
I did purchase an extended drive train warranty, but I've recently had a large number of systems fail in short order including the water pump, purge valve, and transmission pan and filter. There's also the standard German oil leak which is so minuscule that I've chosen not to fix it. My mechanic and I both think that this bad period will pass and that the car will remain reliable so I'm currently still positive about it. It's a great machine.
2006 BMW 5 Series 525xi 4dr Sedan AWD (3.0L 6cyl 6M)
We purchased our 525xi secondhand at a BMW dealership and it was certified used. The interior comfort is great, and road noise is minimal. The only thing I don't like about our 5 Series is the iDrive system. It can't be avoided (option up a standard radio like in the 3 Series), and it has radio presets, but there are no preset buttons (you have to use iDrive to get to them). The car also has an annoying "grab" in the transmission, a software issue. The performance is great. I love this car.
Comfort, Technology, Performance
Annoying "grab" in transmission, iDrive could use improvements (specifically, the preset buttons aren't there)
Minor problems while under warrantee.
Since then, replaced rear wheel bearing at 40K.
Transmission slam from second to first like getting hit from behind.
BMW engineers created a computer work around for this common problem but will not fix this default and you must pay dealer whether it works or not.
Many people being talked into replacing transmission for $5k.
Cheap dash components like cup holders and ashtray flimsy, had to replace both two times.
For the price paid, quality is severely lacking.
Would not recommend buying a used one.
Local dealer repair shop is horrible.
Had vehicle 9 days on two occasions without fixing.
BMW regional tech changed battery 2hrs.
It stops faster than any car I have ever driven, and it does it without noise or swerving.
Milage was about what was stated.
Turning xenon headlights really help in night driving.
When company finds a common defect warranting their engineers to program a solution for the transmission problem, they should make it avaliable to owners free, demonstrating their standing behind their vehicle performance.
The ZF transmission used in this model is a
considerably poor quality part.
Local dealer service techs are horrible and only 1 dealer in town.
The company should provide alternatives for owners in this position. Some interior components also cheaply made or designed, cup holders and cigarette/power plug the worst.
Drove Nissan products for 20 years... CVT transmission is a joke!!! Decided to test drive my 5 and fell in love... yes, service / parts are not cheap, but buy a Kia if you cannot live with it... love it and would buy it again!!!
Smoth as silk and quiet, yet you feel connected to the road... love traction control and the steering...
Cap holders.... hm... shell I say more???? Idrive... great idea, if you have time to read the manual, I don't....