Used 2009 BMW 3 Series Consumer Reviews - 128 Car Reviews | Edmunds

2009 BMW 3 Series Consumer Reviews

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Thinking of used 328xi? Read this one!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Paul M.
on

Vehicle

2009 BMW 3 Series 328i xDrive 4dr Sedan AWD (3.0L 6cyl 6M)


Review

I wanted: stick-shift, black n'black, all-wheel drive, sharp-looking car. When you consider the options and the prices, the higher-mileage BMW was definitely the right combination of features for the right price...admittedly with quiet risks attached..? I read reviews, watched youtube videos, and kept my ears alert for advice from people with first-hand experience. I bought the car with about 95,000 miles from a rather 'out-of-the-way' (we'll call it) car lot. The combination of transmission, color, AWD, and year was very difficult to find - I would come back from test drives and someone else would be waiting. I ended up getting the car a state away (Ohio). I *assumed* I'd have to deal with the previous owner(s) not doing routine maintenance - and I assumed correctly. Before I get into what all happened and how I handled it, a short bit about me: electrical engineer with a life (so far) fixing my own cars. First issue was the radio. Decided on its own when to turn on or off...at first I thought the car was telling it to turn on and off, but after a far-to-lengthy analysis, I just replaced the radio (eBay, $300)...it has been fine ever since. A few months later, the car began one day to run as if the engine was missing a cylinder. I changed the spark plugs and all was well. Again a month or so later...changed all the coil packs. All good ever since (year+) (routine maintenance! did it myself; parts were about $200). Sometime between the plugs/coils and the next repair I'll talk about shortly was the passenger-side rear tail light - a row of LEDs went out. This caused the car to limit energy to the entire tail light, which made it look dim. $60 and two bolts and that was OK (apparently there may have been a recall; didn't bother). Also replaced the battery. It simply wouldn't hold a charge; $180 (big battery, did that myself too, routine maintenance!). Up until this point, I had no issues. The car is a joy to drive and those repairs weren't a huge deal to me, maybe because I am handy. The two profoundly irritating repairs were the blower motor for the heat/AC and the coolant pump. On one of the coldest days this winter (so far), I was out of town (Chicago) for a wedding. On my way home to Pittsburgh, the blower decided that it just didn't feel like turning on. It was something like 15-20*F. Fortunately, turning the air control to 'outside air' allowed the highway driving to keep me warm. When I got home, I pulled the blower motor out myself (a known issue, since then a recall has been issued), lubricated the motor shaft, and reinstalled it. All good so far. Once you get the hang of it, its not too bad of a job...maybe 1/2 hour if you have a new blower on-hand. Finally - the big one...the (electric) coolant pump. As an engineer, I understand the concept, but I think I would've kept a crucial engine component like this mechanical to prevent what happened...it died. On my birthday (4th of July), it proceeded to overheat (on one of the hottest days last year). This repair was something I was willing to do, however, the car was too low to the ground for me to efficiently do it (would've needed a lift). I broke down and spent the $1,000 and all was well...for a minute. Every once in awhile, the car informs me of a low coolant level...I assume a small leak somewhere (these cars have crap coolant systems, known fact)...so I will look into it when it isn't winter anymore. At the moment, it's fine. So - would I buy another one? YES. Shifts like a dream, rides like a dream, the AWD is fantastic in wet/snowy conditions. Gas mileage is OK (around 20mpg mixed conditions; I drive more aggressively, probably due to the stick-shift). For some reason, when pumping gas, the fuel pump clicks off before it's full. After a half tank, it takes a little while giving it fuel between clicks of the pump. Slightly annoying, but not the end of the world. Seat heaters are awesome in the winter. Engine is a fantastic mechanical masterpiece...so balanced it sounds like a sports bike revving-up. The controls and gauges are the usual beautiful red - easy on the eyes at night, everything is in a logical place and generally intuitive. The cup holders are irritating if your cup doesn't have a lid (and sometimes even if your drink is full and does have a lid), but whatever. Overall, if you do what you should do to a car and you diagnose problems properly and fix the easy ones, it hasn't been a bad car at all. It's a joy to drive, and I love that it's the one I walk up to in the parking lot...the thing is gorgeous...keep up the maintenance and have a little money aside when that coolant pump/blower motor goes bad. All-and-all I gave it a 4/5 across the board...dings for the radio, coolant pump, and blower motor. I can't comment on dealerships because I haven't gone to any (the hours are not conducive to my 9-5). It's exciting to drive and I love an exciting car!


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Looks great, poor performance and ease of use
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Mary Byers
on

Vehicle

2009 BMW 3 Series 328i 2dr Convertible (3.0L 6cyl 6M)


Review

This car looks like a classic design, but with the worse user friendly design, terrible perform, gas mileage, comfort, repair cost, and resale, but that is to be expected given the poor dealer and manufacture and dealer support. Take the key fob design, instead of simply replacing the batt, you have to spend. $150 on a completely new key fob. Poor design that BMW would not stand behind. Their cars have only gotten worse over the years, and my 2001 530i was one of the better cars they made. BMW has lost their edge and that’s a shame.


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When is a BMW a FoRD?
2 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
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By John Kain
on

Vehicle

2009 BMW 3 Series 328i xDrive 4dr Sedan AWD (3.0L 6cyl 6M)


Review

When it's Fixed or Repaired Daily. The litany of problems with this "luxury" car dictates that you have to have access to a second car. Factor that into the cost of ownership. Things that never went wrong over the course of owning several Toyotas for hundreds of thousands of miles routinely crop up on this car. A true lemon. And of course the cost of repair fully justifies the BMW "Break My Wallet" sobriquet. The headlight switch fell out of the dashboard. Running lights cost almost $300 to replace. The worthless adaptive lighting broke and the estimate to repair and realign the headlights is thousand of $. The windshield gasket is cracking and has to be replaced. I've had the engine gasket replaced TWICE, each over $1,000. Windshield wipers cost $55 at the dealer - they're not available at auto repair stores. The engine oil and coolant fluid have to be topped off regularly. Oh, and the hood release doesn't work, so the car has to be taken to a mechanic for those simple maintenance tasks. The gas tank closure broke. And don't even get started on the run-flat tires. I order extras now because I know the winter pothole season will ruin one or two tires, and last year a rim, too. Buy this car to look at, and to show your neighbors that you can afford a "luxury" car, but don't buy it for reliable transportation. Unless you're married to an expert mechanic.


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goodoptions, superb handling, weak acceleration
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Alan
on

Vehicle

2009 BMW 3 Series 328i xDrive 2dr Coupe AWD (3.0L 6cyl 6M)


Review

I have owned this car for over 4 years. The options and interior beat out many of the newer cars available today ( adaptive xenon, leather interior, wood trim, fine stitching, interior lighting, hill descent control). The ride is very good and typical on highways of the best luxury cars, the ride on rough terrain or around town is painful given the suspension. I enjoyed driving this car; in the rain and adverse conditions this car offered incredible and confident road handling, great visibility and solid performance. Braking and handling are classic and sharp; heated seats and steering wheel are better than on any car I've owned or tested. The trunk was deep given the lack of spare and provided ample storage for a coupe. Passing was always a breeze. Now for the negative... the 0-60 specs are around 7+ seconds which are pathetic for any car, the maintenance is painful, a 3 series is an entry level luxury car and I was shocked at the cost to maintain , every time i took it to the shop after 70k miles it needed something. The windows always fogged in cold and/or rainy weather and keeping the defroster on always made the cabin way too hot. It was impossible to keep a good temperature (notable BMW problem). The speedometer was always 5-10MPH faster than i was actually going (another notable bimmer problem-they purposely inflate to make it seem faster). After owning for a few years the depreciation in the vehicle was awful, everyone talks about the value of BMW but they don't hold it. All in all it is a great car with high quality assets but a fair amount of "manageable" downfalls. Bottom line is : you will enjoy the car and it is a better option over many newer vehicles however it will cost you to maintain and watch those potholes.


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335i Rocks!
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Richard Song
on

Vehicle

2009 BMW 3 Series 335i xDrive 2dr Coupe AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 6M)


Review

Bought my e92 335xi with a little bit over 40k miles on 2015. Currently almost two and half years, it's been running like a champ. Drives and handles like a dream. Everything feels heavy yet steady and tight: the gas paddle, brake paddle, suspension, and the steering wheel. All these together make it a comfortable car and you a confident driver. Sometimes I went 90mph on highway without even noticing because it simply feels so sturdy. Although not designed for fuel efficiency, it returns 30mpg on the highway on usual basis. There are occasional repairs, as expected, but it's worth every penny. Radiator gave up @51k mile. Carbon build up causing car hard to start @55k mile. Except from that, it's been problem free.


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