Used 2003 BMW 5 Series Consumer Reviews - 224 Car Reviews | Edmunds

Consumer Reviews

2003 BMW 5 Series

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224 Total Reviews

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Best car I've ever had
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By bdclass
on

Vehicle

2003 BMW 5 Series 525i 4dr Sedan (2.5L 6cyl 5M)


Review

Bought in September 2014 with 93,000 miles from a family friend. Only paid $5400. She bought it cpo in 2006 for $32,000 had 19,000 miles when she purchased it. Incredibly reliable car. Only issues with the car are the clutch crapped at 101,000 miles, new clutch for $1,200 drives like new. Passenger side power seat died when our friends owned it they spent around $1000 to fix. The drivers side power seat has died on me in my position so we aren't fixing it. The instrumentation is pixlelated, also too expensive to fix. I put 16,000 miles on it in one year of ownership and have never been worried about it leaving me sit. For a 12 year old car it drives like new, I enjoy driving it much more than my 2009 Honda Accord v6, despite it being half the age with 30,000 less miles. (Also a nice car though for those on the market for a car.) Once I get a new job I'm going to buy a new 3 series, because that is about the last 4 door BMW you can buy with a manual transmission.

Update: has a terrible oil leak, but is still driving well.


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I cannot give this car up-just too good.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful
Performance
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By barton
on

Vehicle

2003 BMW 5 Series 530i 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5M)


Review

The 2003 530i is a classic, and in every sense a world-class vehicle. I can't seem to let mine go. I am the new leaser of a Ford Fusion Hybrid, and I am getting 43 to 44 MPG, and it rides smoothly, and it has all the modern synching and convenience features, including magnificent cup-holders (if you catch my drift), all for new price $29K with leather seats. Quite a good value, but I will never stop driving my 530i for fun, for that luxury feel and comfort, for that unbelievable handling and precision. As the last and most refined of the E39 series, it is just the best car, much more of a driver's car than even the 2004, and far more so than today's 5 series.


Best Features

Smooth, precise, comfortable ride. Only car that ever lived which handles like that and rode like that. This ain't no luxury car for the grandparents, unless they like doing 130 MPH for fun. Did I mention what it feels like at high speeds (which I 100% did legally only on the autobahn, uh-hu)?


Worst Features

None. Okay, those flimsy cup-holders could change. Seriously, BMW, just re-issue this, like they do for Vintage Fender guitars. Why did you "improve" the driver's experience out of the 5 series? I guess the 1% can't drive worth a heck anymore?


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The greatest car on the road!!!
9 of 11 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
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Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By anthony_e39
on

Vehicle

2003 BMW 5 Series 525i 4dr Sedan (2.5L 6cyl 5M)


Review

Being only 16 years old I am fortunate enough to have a 2003 525i for my first car it's got 45k miles and this car is truly a dream! It rides so smooth! Mine has the sport package and it is a joy to drive! It handles like a dream and the most fun car to own! If you have the opportunity to own one DONT HESITATE!!!! The repairs are kinda pricey but if you're a car guy like myself DIYing it will save you plenty of money! Truly love this car and am now a loyal BMW owner!


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168K and still going strong!
18 of 20 people found this review helpful
Performance
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Fuel Economy
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By papatago
on

Vehicle

2003 BMW 5 Series 530i 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5M)


Review

This car is amazing!
Bought it in '05 with 7K on it and now I have 168K and still solid, well built and reliable!
If you can DIY some things, you can save a grip of $$$ and still have one of best cars built, period! Heavy car and going through tires is going to be an issue but nothing beats this car on the open road!
I drive from northern CA to southern CA twice a month 700+ miles and 30+MPG can compare with a lot of hybrids out there...but no hybrid is as fun to drive. It truly is the Ultimate Driving Machine!


Best Features

The car is intimidating, but when you find out what you need to do, it's a simple car to work on to DIY. The car is just so well built, safe, great gas mileage especially on the open highway...where this car is meant to be! It's comfortable and you really feel the road! Rubber parts after 11-years will get dry and rot out, replace them and the car seems it will go forever! Great transmission, responsive and the interior looks great even in the CA sun for all these years! Paint is holding up great, even thought I haven't spoiled it by parking indoors or under cover! These germans know how to build a great car!


Worst Features

Everyone will comment on the pathetic cup holders, but buy the replacement aftermarket on Amazon for $30 and replace it yourself in 5-minutes! It is an aluminum engine so you really need to be aware of overheating! The cables in the seats will go out, but a few youtube videos and a $6 lighter I bought at a liquor store instead of an expensive torch, 5-hours later and saved over 1K in repair costs! If your oil leaks, I replaced the Valve Cover Gasket in a few hours and saved another grip of $$$ but, the oil filter housing gasket will go soon as well....it can be done DIY but allow a lot of time and patience! Rubber on the window will go soon too, but 30 min and its good as new.


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Transmission problem
23 of 40 people found this review helpful
Performance
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By lawrence
on

Vehicle

2003 BMW 5 Series 530i 4dr Sedan (3.0L 6cyl 5M)


Review

Once the 6 year 100k miles warranty is gone, surprises! Maintenance very expensive and for those equipped with lifetime ZF HP19 transmission you'll be lucky if it last past 100K mark. Especially in New England weather.


Best Features

Beautiful car, excellent performance! Maybe the Best car overhaul for its time. Hard to find a replacement even among later models.


Worst Features

Fix transmission problem or up the powertrain warranty. Stop with the lifetime joke to cut on cost unless you can grantee 200K plus.


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