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BMW 5-Series Sedans



  • george94george94 Posts: 75
    soo sorry to hear that. Good luck with the insurance guys and keep us posted.
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    I appreciate everyone's sympathy. Considering how much I, love, this car, I'm surprised I didn't break down in tears at the sight of it. I guess it hit me that, in the end, it's just metal, plastic, glass, and rubber, and it's certainly replaceable.

    I'll keep you guys updated. Have a good weekend.
  • chile96chile96 Posts: 330
    My heart goes out to you as I'm sure everyone's does. I just purchased my new toy (600 on the odometer)and am moving to Atlanta in June. Naturally I'm a little freaked and don't think I could be taking it as well as you are - kudos. Is Atlanta known for high end theft/stripping or are you just chalking this up to bad luck as it could happen in any metropolitan city. What part of Atl? - I'm looking to rent in Highlands/Decatur area. With hindsight, do you recommend or anybdy else recommend the BMW alarm or any other theft deterrent system. I didn't get anything on mine but am seriously reconsidering now. Thanks in advance and my sympathies again!
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    As far as I know, all 5-Series cars have the full "Alarm Kit" installed at the factory. I doubt that it would do much good against some dude with a flatbed though. :-/

    Best Regards,
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,260
    If somebody wants your car bad enough, they'll take it. There are ways around alarms (nobody pays attention to them anyway) and other security devices. Even tracking systems such as Lo-Jack have their faults. MB can only track your car if it is on. A friend of mine had his then new MY2001 C320 stolen from his driveway (in Staten Island), trucked up north to Newfoundland, then the car was located when the thieves started it up to load it onto the container.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I find myself wondering about that rather large dent in the hood. Could it be that if someone jumps on the hood from a flatbed "Just So" that the hood pops open? If that was the case, disabling the alarm system would be very easy. Regarding the keys; simply having a duplicate key is not enough, the car would also have to be programmed to "Recognize" that key before it will start.

    Best Regards,
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    I have the only two keys for the car, and as Shipo says, it has to be programmed in order to open the door and/or start the engine. I suppose it's possible an insider at the dealer could be involved, but I certainly have no proof.

    Indeed, if they flat-bedded it away, the alarm should have gone off. Considering it was the middle of the night (I got home at 10:45), it should/could have conceivably woken someone up (I'm a sound sleeper), but I'm convinced these guys were pros. For example, they had an available assortment of older BMW 5-series wheels to put on after they stole mine. Rookie thieves wouldn't do that.

    I'm surprised, too, that they didn't steel the airbags. I've heard they're lucrative in the black market.

    Shipo: I'm not sure I understand your equation: Isn't a car (unless it's destroyed) always worth more in parts than it is to fix it? What if the damage is only a broken windshield? Isn't it worth more in parts than to pay for a new windshield?

    chile96: Welcome to Hotlanta. I'm actually going to be relocating to the DC area soon, but not because of this incident. I live up in North Fulton, near Roswell. My leasing office swears this was the first car robbery since the place was built in 1996. So, I don't think I live in a high-crime area, but crimes certainly happen everywhere (except, maybe, for New Hampshire :) ). As Shipo said, there's no additional alarm options for the 5-series from the dealer. Lojack is an option, but that helps only if you quickly realize the car's been stolen. In my case, it wouldn't have helped. I have no idea what Atlanta's stolen car statistics look like (I'm sure the PD can provide you with numbers), but I wouldn't be overly concerned if I were you. If you'll have a garage, it should be fine there.
  • seivwrigseivwrig Posts: 388
    Man, I was ready to cry for you. I pray to God that your insurance company does the right thing and total out your car. It seems to me that it would cost more in parts and repair costs then totaling out your vehicle. BMW hourly cost is not low. Also, there always the fear that something is missing when repaired.
  • dan_bmwdan_bmw Posts: 29
    To snagiel...I know I am about a month late but thanks for the tracking information. I discovered the web site - owners circle about the same time you answered my request.

    I reconsidered the 530i because of the 2004 forthcoming changes plus my wife's prodding and ordered a 330i. To be totally honest I am not sure I made the right decision and if I had the opportunity again I might go with the 2003 530i. Oh well I saved over $6000 and God willing I will have a second chance after the 36 month lease is up. I am excited about the new 330i though. Thanks again.

  • dan_bmwdan_bmw Posts: 29
    I just read about your 5er. Sorry, I hope things work out in the long run. Additionally , I hope the people who caused you so much grief get their pay back 100 fold.
  • cmr530icmr530i Posts: 278
    Oh my God! I am just floored by your pictures! I send my sincere condolences and am just sick about it for you. Do you know how they disabled the alarm? I'm guessing from the bent hood that they pried it up. Is this when they disabled the alarm? Geez, I am so sorry for you. I hope your insurance co. works in your favor and quickly. Keep us all informed if you can.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I have to hand it to Honda, this was a brave (and costly) undertaking.

    Notice the subject line; it says 'One "Take"', I did not say "Take One". In fact, this video was take 606. Wow.

    Best Regards,
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I like it, just sent it to my brother (who sent me the Honda one). Thanks.

    Best Regards,
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    Just had a set of 4 put on my '98 540i6. 73,200 miles. 235/45R17 94Ys up front and 255/40ZR17s on back. Driving home it started to rain hard. They worked like a charm in rain. Awesome wet grip. Seem quite good on dry pavement, too.

    Anyone had a set of these? On what? What mileage did you get out of 'em? Comments? (Believe they came out in Europe in '01 and then America in '02.)

    Seem like a decently priced maximum performance summer tyre. Less expensive than Pilot Sports. Made in Germany. European Car's comments have been positive. (Of course, the material on Continental's web site was all positive.)
  • karmikankarmikan Posts: 116
    Just got home after a terrific day at the BMW driving school. The course is taught by pro race-car drivers and while I had pretty high expectations (it's not cheap), it was even better than I hoped. Although this was the introductory course, it was a blast learning the limits of a 330i on and off the skidpad.

    Thoroughly recommended if you can find a venue in your area. Can't wait to sign up for the next level, it's done in M3's.......

    PS - Snagiel, let's hope that the creatures who stole your car rot under the rocks they crawled from. My sympathies.
  • srfastsrfast Posts: 138
    I also recommend the BMW Driving School, but any training of this type is beneficial to all drivers especially the younger ones. BTW, where did you take this course?

  • sirtigersirtiger Posts: 38
    Yikes, I am so sorry to read that your car was stolen! Those pics very disheartening to see. yes, they must have been pros... that was kind of weird to see a change of BMW wheels on the car. I have seen pics of a pro taking a zillion variety parts of Lex ES300 and packed it in to my friend's stolen commercial vans...

    I had my 1998 Avalon with 8600 miles stolen by flatbed in 2000. It was on my driveway! I customed a variety of custom security features myself so tradition breaking in was somewhat unlikely. I was really shaken up when my car was stolen. I always put my two nice cars inside the garage which is blocked by two more. Its a pain to dig my two babies out by moving cars. Its tough to enjoy my cars with the current car thefts problem in urban areas.

    I wasn't the only one. My friend's Nissan Max was stolen by a tow truck dragging his car out of his driveway. Big dark tire marks can be seen on the driveway. I heard another friend of mine had her 330i flatbeded as well. Its more common than most people think.

    In reference to the programmed BMW keys & duplications... What about that little credit card key? Is there technology inside that little key? It doesn't appear to be any so I presume that they key could be dup. easily by an unscrupulous person. I was very surprise that card key can start the engine which is illogical. My Lex has that key also which can open the doors but not turn on the engine.
  • ksqrdksqrd Posts: 21
    So sorry to hear about and see the pix from your tragic incident. The car I replaced to get my 530i, a stock '93 Integra GS-R, was stolen when I lived in SF. Strangely enough, the night before it was stolen, a young knife-wielding kid pounded on the passenger window in another part of town (in an attempted carjacking bid, I assume) but I sped away through a red light. I wasn't thinking, and while it could have turned out worse, I got away alive (and with the car intact).

    The next morning, I came out to the curb in the Marina, and the car was gone. It was recovered hours after it was stolen, by SF police who had been tracking someone who had a penchant for nice-looking Japanese street rockets. The police told me they thought it would have been stripped by morning, and that I was lucky it was recovered on a Sunday evening.

    My first car, a '76 2002, was also broken into, and the thieves stupidly destroyed the dash while lifting the stereo. It took a few months to get a replacement dash unit from Munich.

    All of these incidents paled in comparison to yours--so I can only imagine your pain. Good luck with the replacement.
  • karmikankarmikan Posts: 116
    The course is held at Downsview Airport (an old Air Force base) in north-central Toronto.

    Re stolen car, check out:

    Interesting technology. Seems that it works using an embedded cell phone system (rather than the usual GPS) that's activated and the owner notified if the car moves without authorization. The company is based in Montreal but they claim that they are able to track across North America.

    No mention of any US distributors. May be an opportunity for a few entrepreneurs out there.
  • george94george94 Posts: 75
    Here in Boston area Lojack ( similar services. The system can be attached to your pager, email device etc and provides a notice when your car has been moved w/o your permission. There is a one time installation fee and monthly charge as well.
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    I saw that as well, and the technology seems impressive (assuming it works as advertised). The problem is, in their animated demonstration they claim that once your car is driven off without the authorization key, they contact you in "15 to 30 minutes, certainly within an hour." Then, you have to call 9-1-1, give them your lojack key and VIN, and they start hunting your car down. Seems to me it could easily take an hour or two before they find your car. Not bad, but another statistic on the LoJack site claims most chop-shops can "surgically strip a car in under 30 minutes." And what if your car isn't driven away, but rather towed?

    So, even with this system, it seems pros could do a fair bit of damage and potentially get away with it if they're quick enough.
  • msealsmseals Posts: 257
    Wow, that must have been some time ago that you lived in Michigan. Motown only seems to be used when talking about the past these days. I was born in Detroit and a month later moved to LA. About 7 years later we moved back to Michigan and spend 9 years in Southfield. After that we moved out to West Bloomfield, when I finished up high school, went off to college and came back, I was stupid and got married at 22 yrs old. I moved into an apartment in Farmington Hills for two years until I bought my current house in Dearborn Heights. I love my house and my neighborhood. I live with all senior citizens, mostly WWII vets who have raised their familys in those homes since the war. It is nice and quiet and nothing much happens. The only knock I have is that I grew up in Oakland County so all of my friends are north of me and I have to drive at least 20 min to get to any of them. Any way, it is great to see a fellow Michigander.

    And, it is any advantage on getting your ride after you are done with it, GO Michigan!!!

  • dzubadzuba Posts: 159

    Anyone lease a CPO before?
    I came across a sweet Black Sapphire/Charcoal 2002 530 - Sport,CWP,Xenon, Step, moonroof - with 10K miles on it. We are just starting to negotiate leasing rates now!

    Since it does not have the Premium Package - am I losing much by not having the "on board" computer in the car?

    TMV/CPO on this car is $41,400 FYI!! I am also considering buying it as well -although I think the price of $43K is to high!

    Additionally, the car happens to be at the one dealer I really want to buy from - as they are very well respected and have a fantastic service department, what is that worth - I don't know!

  • joatmonjoatmon Posts: 315
    BMWFS is now offering leases incentives on new 5 series.

    Hope this helps,

  • colt007colt007 Posts: 64
    Snagiel - just horrible. That's my Toledo Blue's sister. Like you said, it is just a car(albeit a very nice one). Least your OK & hope you get back your machine quickly.

    Riez - I have the Contisports on a '02 530ia, pp, sp, cwp, step, xenons, split seats, approx 15,600 miles. I've just developed a whir, whir, whir from my pass. rear tire (at least I hope it is the tire). Other than that, the tires are great & still stick on my favorite 40mph off ramps that I take at 65mph. I would recommend them, although I want to see what the stealer says about the noise.

  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    colt007... Do you have the ContiSportContacts or ContiSportContact 2s? I bought the latter. Believe the 2s came to America in 2002. Don't think Continental's web site had the 2s listed as OEM for any BMWs. Mainly Porsche. (The 2s have a 280 treadwear rating. The 1s have a 160 treadwear rating.)

    My Yokohamas (think they were AVS Decibels) had mainly worn out in the rears. Making a pronounced tyre moan, most prominent at low speeds. Primarily the inside portion of both rear tyres. Practically worn out. I know the tyres had at least 21,000 miles from me but no sure how many on them before I bought the car CPO.

    Talked to the service writer and repair tech. Both said 540i's tend to wear the inside rears out first. Due to suspension set up (camber, etc.). They said the same would happen to the Contis. Just comes with the car.

    I bought my tyres thru my BMW dealer. He bought them thru Tire Rack. Had dealer mount & balance along with full 4-wheel alignment.

    From what I've read in Roundel, Bimmer, etc., seems like periodically ensuring proper 4-wheel alignment (which I do about every 10,000 miles) is one of the best things you can do. In addition to taking care of the tyres (pressure, etc.). And since I have staggered tyres, with the rears being bigger, there is no way I can rotate. (Not that I'm a fan. I kind of agree with BMW's logic regarding tyre rotation issue. There is a nice piece on the subject in the current issue of Bimmer magazine.)

    [Aside: I know we Americans spell the word "tire". But sometimes I like to pretend to be English and these tyres are made in Germany and also they say "tyre" right on the sidewall.]
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    Finally, some good news in this whole saga...

    The insurance adjuster finally saw my car this morning. She noted everything (visually) that was damaged or stolen (essentially same as my list), and tallied up the parts on her computer. Fairly quickly, she ran up to $27k (including standard labor installation rates). From her experience, she said she would expect at least another $6k or so in hidden/overlooked damage and missing pieces, meaning they'd have to pay at least $33k. The salvage value turned out to be $12k, so...

    They totalled the car. I was fully expecting an uphill battle in getting fair value for it (i.e. the amount it would cost to buy the same model CPO at a dealer), and I collected as much KBB/Edmunds and CPO locator pricing as possible to help my case. It fortunately proved unnecessary, as she came back with an offer of $43,300, plus sales tax and title fees.

    I was floored. I'd already spoken with a lawyer, who advised me not to take the first offer. But, this was almost too good to be true: I paid just three grand more for the car 16 months (17,000 miles) ago. Who says BMWs don't hold their resale value well?

    Hopefully I'll have a check within a few days, but so far my experience with Travelers insurance has been phenomenal. It's been a quick and painless process.

    I'd love to tell everyone I'll be honoring my E39 with a similar replacement, but I'll probably be stepping in another direction. Frankly, I don't like used cars (regardless of their certification), and I believe the market has changed some against BMW's favor in the past year. No need to elaborate, but I believe there are good values that lie beyond the roundel. But, I haven't even test-driven anything else yet, so we'll see.

    As far as the theft itself, there's still precious little known about who stole the car, or how. A detective called me today and mentioned a couple of other BMW's have been stolen after recent service visits to a certain Atlanta-area dealer, but unfortunately I've never had my car serviced there. Hopefully they'll catch up with these thugs sooner or later.

    Thanks again to everyone for their sympathies, encouragement, and advice.

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 4,039
    since you're a data hog like myself, how much were each of your four wheels adjusted at each of those 10K mile interval alignments?

    Paying people for things is necessary, but collecting the information is optional. Since you've driven your 540 for several 10K increments, how stable is the BMW suspension? If you have the alignment "done," and it's unchanged, the car's suspension is robust. If not, I think there are those who would like to hear how it changes. There's that "which wheel went how far out each time, and did it come back in later?" thing.

    Where I work we track this sort of stuff. How's it going? Those of us who drive vehicles that actually benefit from four-wheel alignment are curious.

    And. . .on a whole separate subject, all of us who have had scum steal things that we've worked for wish that snaigel comes out of this at least approximately whole.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    cdnpinhead... The technician didn't alert me to any problems. I didn't ask. While I probably should ask, for some reason I never do. Price of 4-wheel alignment isn't too bad. And I use the car for business so all my expenses are deductible. Next time, I'll ask.

    I'm hoping I get at least 25,000 miles on the CSC2s. If not all 4, then at least fronts. I never asked the selling dealer how many miles were on the tyres when I bought her. I wanted some more aggressive rubber than the Yokohamas, so I was looking for a reason to get new tires. But I'm also a bit frugal so I went 20,000 miles.

    I haven't had any issues with the suspension or steering.

    Went on a quick 150 mile business trip today. Beautiful weather, if a bit windy. The ContiSportContact 2s gripped like magnets. Had a blast on some nice favorite stretches of rural road in middle of nowhere. Some nice Ss and one big 90 degree sweeper.
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