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BMW 7-Series Maintenance and Repair

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  • shybirdshybird Posts: 1
    (1999 740i, 103,000 miles)
    First query: A very faint alarm sound (hardly noticeable, moreso when the radio is on) is barely audible when the ignition key is turned on. I'm clueless, any guess on where this is coming from?
    Second query: By changing the O2 sensor at 100,000, is there a real, significant improvement in fuel consumption/performance? Car passed recent smog test.
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    Guys - I am looking at a 2006 750Li CPO with 26K miles. The CPO expires 2yrs after the OEM warranty by EO 2011. Now there is another car dealer out in CA (the one with 26K miles is instate) selling a 2007 750Li with about 30K miles. Price delte is about $1.4K (2007 more than 2006 ofcourse). Featurewise they seem to be fairly similar. But 2006 has a financing incentive versus 2007, which will run regular used car financing rates.

    Question is - which one is a better buy? I know this is a personal preference but the instate car warranty expires EO 2011 and the one on the car in CA expires March 2013. Is it worth pursuing the out of state car? The out of state car will run about 3-4K more - considering more taxes and higher interest rate (2006 CPO is at 3.9%)..

    Looking for some recommendations here. I have seen a lot of mixed messages on 750Li long term reliability. Any pointers?

    Is there such a thing as BMW warranty beyong 6yrs 100,000?

    Thanks
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,700
    Shoot, you could run up a $4000 bill on a 750iL with a snap of your fingers. Presuming the CA dealer is reputable and that you can view the car personally, I''d go with the car with the longer warranty. You never EVER want to be in a 750iL without warranty coverage of some sort. By 2013, you may want to buy another one anyway, so you'll be transitioning from one warranty to another....or, if the 750 you bought turned out to be a very well-behaved example, you can keep it after 2013 with some confidence.
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    Thank you for the response:

    So the warranty should be the first criteria then?

    The CA cars have comparable mileage - ~30K. I do plan to keep this car long and usage is going to be limited to about 600-800 miles a month. The 2006 with 27K miles (whose warranty expires end of 2011) is driven about the same miles - ~9k/year.

    The 2007 used car financing rates are at about 6.79%. Its almost as if they're charging you for stuff that will break, in advance. In comparison the 2006 is at a 3.9%.

    Is there no warranty after the CPO expires? Or am I just too hopeful?

    Thanks
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    I guess the real question is that should we expect a lot of issues for the 1 year coverage that the 2007 car provides. Because once that one year is elapsed, that car is going to cost a bunch of $$ too..right?
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,700
    Based on what you said about the 2007 having a CPO warranty good to 2013, and given the prices of the two cars, the 2007 seems like a better deal all around. I think the 2006 is overpriced by at least another $5000.

    You can bargain hard on a 7 series right now.
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    Okay - I am going to checkout the 2007 I mentioned above. Thanks for all the tips so far.

    BTW - is the 750Li really as bad as some people refer to? I see sharply contrasting responses from people. It seems like some peope have had no issues, while others see frequent transmission/engine problems. I wonder why this car would have so many more issues compared to a high end 5-series with the same engine? I know electrical complexity is higher due to iDrive and in general rule of thumb is that the more complex system you develop poorer the reliability expected, since you now have more parts that could potentially fail.

    I know that the 2002 745's had major issues - a friend told me that he owned it and had issues. But I also hear BMW fixed these in upcoming models.

    Since you're the expert, it would be great to hear your perspective.

    Thanks
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,700
    I hate to blanket a car with a bad reputation, because things change year to year.

    What I can say with assurance is that earlier 750s have been problem-ridden and sometimes make it to the "worst used cars" lists. Part of this came from the V-12 engine, which now of course is a 760 option, not a 750 option.

    How much of all the earlier issues BMW has squared away by 2007, I have no idea. The reliability ratings for the newer cars seem quite improved--but there are still issues.

    People "love" them because they are GREAT cars to drive, not necessarily because they are dead-reliable or cheap to own. Also depreciation rates are higher than normal.
  • dougmcdougmc Posts: 4
    My 1998 BMW 740il has 198k miles on it, and will stall intermittently. You never know when it will happen. Could be when I start it,and it acts like it's flooded, could happen at a stop light or when I'm driving it. When I restart it, I have to rev it up. But never dies totally when it is being driven. The mechanic thought it needed a new crankshaft sensor, but that hasn't helped. Otherwise, it runs great. I would appreciate any ideas. Thanks in advance.
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    Would you know how much a maintainence plan would run to cover the BMW 750Li, past the 4yrs/50K miles? I talked to a dealer and he was offering it for 3K and I thought that sounded excessive.

    I have heard different numbers... When is it best to buy the maintainence plan? The car I am looking at has 18K miles left on it and about 20months of the original warranty, after which the extended warranty kicks in (valid through 2013).
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,700
    Maintenance plans are a profit item for the dealers so some may mark them up more than others. if you have more than one dealer, shop around. The problem with maintenance plans is that they are sometimes hard to compare, as they include and exclude different items. You have to read them over very carefully. Also deductibles will vary as well, and rules for deductibles also vary.But by all means, get something.
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    ok. so the maintenance plans are different than extended warranty - right? The car comes with a certified pre-owned warranty valid until 2013. The maintenance expires at 50K miles or mid-2011.

    I'll send out requests to multiple dealers. Is it advisable to buy this as soon as possible or should I wait until I get closer to expiration?
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,700
    Can you post what they are giving you and how much it costs? It's kind of hard for me to know what the maintenance plan involves. If it has a lot of "packing" in it, I might say no. I'm really not familiar with this plan so I hesitate to influence you too much.

    so you have a CPO warranty until 2013, right? (GOOD!) And I presume you'll keep the car until then....so we need to figure out (seems to me) the cost of about 4 years of maintenance with NO plan at an independent BMW shop vs. 4 years of maintenance at dealership prices.

    Much as I hate to say it, you may find that not a lot of independent BMW shops are not that comfortable with a 7 series car.
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    Hi -

    I have asked for the breakup of the maintainence plan - its called "BMW Ultimate or Elite". Now I do have this maintainence plan until mid-2011 since the original warranty does not expire until then (this is a 2007 750Li). The pre-owned warranty kicks in after 2011 but the maintainence plan expires mid-2011 and will need to be bought for the period 2011 to 2013 (2013 is when the pre-owned warranty expires). Depending on how this car works out I plan to keep it - but first pass want to see how it runs through atleast the warranty period.

    Now this car also happens to be a demo car - and the basic warranty is available until 55K miles (it has 33K miles on it right now). But maintainence still expires at 50K.

    This is one of the two cars that this dealer had on their lot for 113 days and they lowered the prices down almost 10K to clear out their inventory. So I think I have a pretty decent deal and would hence not mind paying a little bit more for the maintainence plan from BMW. I do hear that third party options are pretty unreliable.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,700
    Well what if we do this---let's estimate that to maintain a 750, not REPAIR it necessarily, but maintain it...might cost $150 a month. How does that square up with the cost of the extended maintenance plan?
  • dougmcdougmc Posts: 4
    I am still hoping someone will help me with this 1998 BMW 740il and it's stalling problem, as originally described above. Thanks.
  • found a 98 740i with 126,000 miles, everything works, new trans, excellent condition body wise, idles rough, shakes going down the road, guy will take 3000.00 for it, is :) it a good deal, will need a battery :)
  • pfreak76pfreak76 Posts: 17
    ">Yea - you asked the right question.

    Now what the guy offered to be was $2999 for a 2 year maintaince plan post the 50K maintainence expiration. That covers me through 2013. Now I hear that the brakes, rotors, oil change and windshield wipers cost a fortune for the 750. They should easily exceed 2999 if they break - which I am guessing they will.

    So its a no brainer. But I also hear that you can shop around for the best price. To answer your question on the specifics - the maintainece plan through BMW has no deductibles.

    I have plenty of time to buy and negotiate this maintainence plan. The car is working out great btw and I believe this one was a pretty good buy - thanks to this one and another one of these being on the market for like 100 days plus, the dealer shot down the price about 8K below the first advertised price. I believe a 44K price for a 2007 750Li with pre-owned warranty until 2013 - is a pretty decent deal.
  • polljimmypolljimmy Posts: 6
    In many cases its possible to unlock the engine in 740 trunk.When you try more and more you are specially go through the manually trunk.
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