I bought this car used with a clean car fax in 2010 with less than 15000 miles. I bought an extended warranty just in case. I spent 8 month researching vehicles i would like to own and keep for 10 years. I have made a very poor decision. The maintenance cost on this vehicle will exceed its worth. It's been fun to drive, a very comfortable car with decent gas mileage. However, when I've taken it in for service, it's like sleeping with the devil. Goodbye emergency fund and hello credit card debt. It's the most disappointing feeling to love a car so much and be saddled with such repair bills. Fuel injectors replaced, water pump, thermostat, numerous hoses and vacuum hoses, and now replacing turbos and catalytic converters all before 90,000 miles. Not good resale either!!!
I have owned many German AWD cars, after the Audi S4, this is the most fun to drive. That being said, it is not the most fun to own. I have had numerous mechanical issues and even more electronic issues. I have heard a few complain about the battery. I have switched to an Optima battery, which is cheaper and lasts longer. I have heard that BMW knew about his battery draining issue before they release it, but decided to replace the batteries instead of fixing the issue. The VANOS system had a glitch out east, oiling system out west, sparkplug in the Midwest, and a constant brake issue. I am afraid to open the sunroof for fear that it will not close properly and I?ll have to take it apart and manually close it. The parking assist doesn?t work at all and when it had worked it was over sensitive. Our front windshield was replaced and I still can?t get the intermittent wipers to work properly. The transmission seems to be slipping and I am not willing to spend the money to replace it. If it was repaired at a BMW dealer, it would total the car. Found out the differential bearing is bad and the unit has to be replaced not the bearing (a $5,000 job). Nothing is cheap to replace on the car and local shop don?t have the tools or electronics to work on it, so I have to drive 6 hours to fix something and spend big money on labor and parts. If someone else besides BMW fixes something (like the brake pads) the dealer will not turn off the warning light, because they did not do the work, even though they say it was a good job.
On the bright side, it gets good mileage for the performance. It rides well, but I feel it is too soft. The backend wiggles on slick roads when it hits a bump at speed and that can be a bit unnerving. There is a lot of room in the back with the seats folded down and have used it as a makeshift tent in bad weather (as long as the sunroof doesn?t leak). The interior has held up well and the body hasn?t rusted. Would not buy one again, because of the reliability issues.
Got rid of XC90 for this wagon. I-drive is simple, can set buttons on wheel for fast control. hands free is excellent, much better than my wife's '10 MDX. Comfort seats are unbelievable - makes the purchase. I am now a cornering demon and still get better mileage then my XC90 or the MDX even though they are driven more conservative. The car is also the quietest I've ever owned. My brake pads started squealing and I did not hear until I opened the windows. Plenty of room for 4 adults and a big dog. The cargo cover also has a pet partition built in. Ride quality is superb and unexpected for such a capable sport machine. Price if too high so buy used.
Many visits to the dealership, all while under warranty. Repairs were done under both the original mfg warranty and the CPO warranty. Thankfully, since the warranty expired, there has been only one visit to the dealer in the past 2 yrs, approx 25K miles.
All struts were replaced at 75K, and well worth maintaining a new car ride. They weren't broken, just a bit worn. I find the combination of sport car performance and storage utility makes this car exceed any SUV on the road today. Unfortunately, import of the 5 series wagon ended, I believe, in 2010. Recently, I test drove the X5 as a replacement, but didn't find a discernible difference in ride, mpg, comfort or handling. Sooner or later........
Update at 100K miles. Experienced a trifecta of repairs with a month of each other. Water pump, starter and diversity antenna. Around 3 grand.
Bought the wagon after waiting till 08 model came out. All good things in it but the seats are not as comfortable as the, for example, old 525 of 2001 (I had one). Seems that seats are now smaller(?). Lines are beautiful, got it in Titanium silver and black interior. really nioce. Got the navigation system. I still have to decide whether I like it or not (it is a bit distracting). Should have a "beep" something to alert about animals, etc. Don't think I would order it again. The iDrive is OK, but quite frankly if it didn't have it, things would be easier. Do not like the run flat tires. MPG is disappointing (highway is a challenge to stay at 24 MPG).