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BMW X3 Reliability



  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,015
    The questionning I have brings me here. I would like you, BMW owners, to tell me your experience about this truck. What was the mileage when the first major breakdown happened? how long last the front/rear brakes? How long last a set of tires? How much it costed you to fix your vehicule? Maintenance fees?

    Sorry for the late reply, I've been busy and haven't checked in as much as I should. I can tell you my experience with our 2004 X3 2.5.

    Let me first say that the dealer or repair shop will have a major impact on your ownership experience; my dealer has been excellent. Now to your questions:

    First major breakdown: At 136,800 miles the transfer case failed. Some fail earlier, some later, some not at all. At 148,000 miles the coolant expansion tank cracked, but most owners replace the expansion tank, radiator, thermostat, and water pump around 100,000 miles- although I waited until 156,000 miles(note that I also replaced the vapor separator system at the same mileage)

    Brake lifespan: The first set of front and rear pads and rotors were replaced at 60,000 miles. The second set lasted somewhat longer- the rear pads lasted 71,600 miles(the rotors were still good) while the front pads/rotors went 83,700 miles. Note that brake and tire life are extremely dependent on driving conditions and driving style.

    One major problem can be the huge sunroof- it is VERY expensive when it breaks. I advise leaving it shut and not using it.

    Finally, the overall reliability is directly influenced by how well the car has been maintained. The more service records you can examine the better. Finally, any car you consider should be inspected by a shop that is familiar with BMWs and their common problems.

    Let me know if I can help further!

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • sheel160sheel160 Posts: 2
    I want to start off by saying I love the design both inside and out of this car BMW X 3 picked up where jeep Cherokee left off and took it a step further in my opinion. I had a straight six cylinder engine in an old jeep Cherokee that I owned and sorry to say did not service well and I sold it still running with 210k miles on it. I love the power of my x3 and the pano roof is awesome.

    Now let me start with my experience. I bought my 2006 bmw x3 with 66245miles on it two weeks ago. It currently has 66962miles on it. Ifirst had an issue because on my 200 mile drive from the dealership that I bought my x3 from my check engine light came on. The next day the brake light went out. So I took the car into the dealership and $400 dollars later I have a new hose for exhaust recirculation up by the left side of the engine and a lower radiator hose and new fluid. I was quoted $500 additional cost for expansion tank, host radiator hose, thermostat and flush as preventative maintenance. Also noted was an oil pan gasket leak, rear differential leak, and dip stick o ring leak and I was quoted $2500 for that repair. The day after driving home from dealership car started squeeking and so I popped the hook and am starting to notice a small Frey in the ac belt. I called the dealership and was quoted $865 for the main belt, the ac belt, ac tensioner and new hydrolic tensioner apparently updated old mechanical tensioner and that was just the price of parts and did not include idler pulley. I washed my car yesterday and noticed that the front drivers side headlight seems to have a little fog and moisture in it. HELP!!!! Is this normal because I owned a Hyundai elantra that I drove for the past three years and was a 2003 with 103k miles on it when I bought it three years ago. And yes I put a ton of highway miles on it but I only put about $4500 into tires, brakes and other maintenance and valve cover gasket was the second most expensive malfunction on it. Is this what I have to expect from this car x3? I can't afford to dump another $3400 into this car so what should I do? Should I just try to sell it and cut my losses, try to DIY with some of it and ignore the oil leakes, or just start searching all around a good Indy? I live near Daytona beach Florida so if anyone knows any good Indy shops I would appreciate the help. Also any DIY for me keep it mind I don't have a garage and not a clue about bmws. Also I only have adecent socket set. To end this post I just want to say that the car still drives like. A Sherman tank and I love the steering and breaking that is so controlled. In my Hyundai the steering felt like steering a big rig with how loose it was but the tight steering in the x3 is pretty amazing. Also the breaking and the acceleration and quick shifting is unlike many cars I've driven.
  • sheel160sheel160 Posts: 2
    Also I did a vehicle history report and no accidents or flood damage on this vehicle. I did notice though that the battery has been replaced twice and the ac compressor and evaporator were changed twice. I have also noticed some interior issues that don't make sense. The cheaper pleather plastic whatever the seats are don't seem to wear well. Really by that I mean the drivers seat is cracked on the top and on the side about 6' each. The center sunglass holder I presume? Above the radio doesn't pop up. Also on the vehicle history report it was noted that the center cupholder was replaced but the replaced cupholder in there is currently semi broken and the gloss has worn off on that particular plastic on the center consol area. The wheels seem to scratch easily as I have noted scratches all over the wheel wells. Not a huge deal but annoying for such low mileage. And yes anything under 150k miles in this day and age with the technology is to be expected from all cars. The interior is expected to be semi worn but could have put anything else there and it woulfnt look so cheap and faded already. I hope the newer models changed this. I will say though that I love that the interior is basically all laminate bc it makes it easy to clean. I also love the trunk pull down cover as it's nice to be able to keep my golf clubs hidden not to mention the privacy glass. I have also noticed the car paint seems to be holding up very well and most of the trim seems to be well intact despite some of the issues ive read about from other owners experiencing leaks. No rust seems to have formed anywhere underneath but that is to be expected for Florida car. Also I think from what I've read working on this car can be a pita but underneath the hood just looks clean compaired the other cars as far as the design and the fact that it seems to stay clean in there. Also the key is pretty cool but touch start might be cooler and I'm sure was available at that time. I wish that a better radio and an mp3 port were on this car and I think a factory standard GPS is to be expected from a luxury car but I'm the one who bought one without. But no mp3 usb port in this year just seems cheap. They make up for it elseware I'm sure but I feel that such a great vehicle could be the best if not for some tweaking. Anyway I would recommend this car based on look and. feel but I would so far not recommend this car for cost of ownership because repairs seem to be to much too soon for such a young car
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