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BMW 5-Series Sedans



  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    OK, let's play with some numbers here: you say that by rotating every 10K miles you can extend tire life by 25%.

    Let's say the tires would normally last 25k miles, a new set costs $500 ($125 per tire), and mounting/balancing costs $25/wheel.

    By 125k miles:

    Option 1--Don't rotate:
    New tires: $500 x 5 = $2500 (at 25k,50k,75k,100k,125k).
    Mounting & balancing: $25 x 4 x 5 = $500
    Total: $3000

    Option 2--Rotate every 10k miles:
    (25,000 x 1.25 = 31,250 miles new tire life)
    New tires: $500 x 4 = $2000 (at 31,250, 62,500, 93750, 125k)
    Mounting & balancing: $25 x 4 x 12 = $ 1200 (10k,20k,30k,40k,50k,60k,70k,80k,90k,100k,110k,120k)
    Total: $3200

    Not to mention the degredation in performance (while the newly-rotated tire "sits" in its new position), and the time to go get them rotated every 10k miles.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I buy replacement tires for my Maxima at a very reputable and competitive shop that rotates and balances for free every 7,500 miles, if you can put up with the 1+ hours it takes to get through. Also, my Nissan dealer rotates for free as part of a 7,500 mile service (since they are removing wheels to check brakes anyway), but balancing is $7 per wheel, if needed. Other than a re-balancing of my orignial set at 25k miles, I don't think I've spent anything on balancing and rotation over 121k miles, other than a few hours over at the tire shop.

    And, even if you follow BMW's recommendations and don't rotate tires on a 5-series, I would think they should still be balanced every 15k-20k miles.
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    Last year, when I bought tires from Tire Rack, I searched for a local place they recommended to install (mount & balance) the new tires, and the few places listed all charged about $17-22/wheel + tax, so I didn't think the $25 was unreasonable. I'm surprised to hear of the deal at your tire place--sounds like a good find.

    But even at a lower price, my point is you wouldn't save much over the long term, and frankly I'd rather maximize performance and avoid spending a couple hours every 4-5 months doing something the manual recommends against in the first place just to save some money.

    Just my opinion.
  • cmr530icmr530i Posts: 278
    I will not be rotating my tires as per BMW recommendations. The way I see it, it is like putting on someone else's shoes that are "still good" but have wear patterns different from yours. You just won't get a great fit.
    Just my .02
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Given the amazingly even/symmetrical tire wear my tires have exhibited after 36,000 miles without rotation, I would be skeptical of any claims that said tire rotation would yield even a 10% improvement in tire mileage.

    As Chris (ccotenj) says; ymmv.

    Best Regards,
  • dl7265dl7265 Posts: 1,381
    Discount Tire also rotates for free. Shipo made a good point FWD is much more important due to the extra weight and wear problems with FWD.That said i rotated my original rubber, bear in mind with sport they only had a tread life of 120! as apposed to the all seasons Shipos came with.

  • ts530ts530 Posts: 6
    Been contimplating purchase of new 02 530ia and finally taking the plunge after reading postings by many. Trade in is a 99 300M w/25000 mi. New 5 equip. Steptronic, Sports, Premium, Xenon's, Cold, S/F rear seats. Titanium silver w/black int. After shock of losing 17K in 2.5 years on 300m, can't wait for delivery. Guessing I got a better than average deal @ Shaull BMW in York, PA @ 1770 over dealer invoice. Tried one other dealer in the area, Cumberland Valley BMW. Not a good result... 14000 for 300m and 2300 over DI. Will definetly make purchase of snow tires for next winter after viewing postings.
  • i am planning to take take European Delivery of 530i in July. How easy is it to drive around Germany and Austria not knowing the local languages. Any help or advice would be appreciated. Thanks
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    I wouldn't expect much of a problem. I've never been in Austria, but the German roads are excellent. A good guidebook will orient you with the symbols used, which are generally fairly intuitive (as they are in most of Europe).
    I wouldn't be surprised if the ED program can offer suggestions about routes, hotels, trip recommendations, etc. But I'd suggest Frommer's and/or Rick Steve's books to plan your trip.
    Have a great time.
  • 530bmw530bmw Posts: 130
    you got a good deal for your car. I am curious to know how much they charged you for MACO (adv fee), is it included in the $1770? I live in DC area and paid $200 for MACO, I know it varies from area to area and want to compare it to DC.
  • The roads in Austria are excellent.Most people
    have a good knowledge of English.They will except
    your Visa and Master card.From Munich you can drive to Salzburg.Then drive to Spitz,a rustic
    town along the Donau ( Wachau Region ), stay overnight.Take the boat ride to Krems and return.
    You may want to visit Vienna.If you do, take a hotel in the suburbs and take the train to the
    center.It's high season, you might see your neighbor.Everywhere you go, you will find friendly
    people.The food is out of this world, and you can't beat the scenery. Enjoy the trip.
  • ts530ts530 Posts: 6
    The adv.fee was added on to the bottom line. The amount was $350 which by the way they forgot to add at the time of the sale. The rest of the deal and the way I was treated were fine. I don't have a bmw dealer within 25 miles of my home and Shaull bmw is about 45mi. Also, Faulkner bmw in Lancaster was a consideration but nearly 3 weeks after making an inquiry on a 530, I got no reply. They have only a few cars in their inventory compared to the other 2 I went to.
  • You will absolutely enjoy Euro Delivery. BMW makes every effort to make the process as easy as possible.

    The best part is driving around in a powerful car on the Autobahn. Most european cars have smaller engines (including BMWs, for example they make a 520i and a 530 DIESEL) due to the cost of fuel. Your American-spec car will be a hot rod compared to most others, and everybody races everybody on the Autobahn.

    You will be amazed at how effortlessly you cruise at 100 m.p.h. (the limit before break-in).

    Regarding road signs, they are the "international" type which you should generally recognize. Two IMPORTANT differences in Germany: a) a round white sign with three light gray lines through it means "all restrictions (including speed) are lifted", and b) a diamond-shaped white sign with a yellow center and black outline means you are on a "priority road" when coming to an intersection. Think of it as the opposite of a yield sign. THAT was kind of hard to get used to. Just assume you never have the right of way and I guess you'll be fine!

    Some great places we particularly enjoyed include Fussen (where the "original" Cinderella's castle is located), and Bamberg, where ther's a hotel literally in the middle of a river: the St. Nepomuk.

    For that matter, turn your car back in Munich (generally has be to be on a weekday, though you can make special arrangements for an extra fee) and stay your last weekend there. Be sure to stay near the pedestrian area in the center of the city. Tons to see and you won't miss having a car at all.

    We've been to Germany 4 times, and my vocabulary is about 100 words (bier, etc.). They study English in school so everyone knows a little... What's particularly amusing is when you speak to them in German and they respond in perfect English (not like the French!). Have fun!
  • I currently own a 2001 Toyota Avalon. However, I am looking to purchase a 1998 BMW 328iA. Can you please tell me about the reliability of BMW 3-series, and also about their maintenance costs relative to a Toyota Avalon or Lexus. Thanks.
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    The 328 will drive circles around your Avalon, but don't expect it to be as reliable (not that the BMW's bad, but Toyota/Lexus is about as good as it gets). Consumer Reports rates it as more reliable than average (for the category), I believe.

    I suggest you ask further on the 3-series board, though.
  • Has anyone ever negotiated down the the Euro Delivery price? It seems that the margin of "Euro Retail" to "Euro Invoice" is about the same percentage as US Retail to US Invoice. With the extra work involved, though, the dealers may not want to discount at all.

    I am looking at a 530 5-speed with premium package, rear sunshade, Xenon, and rear airbags in either Silver/Black Leather or Topez Blue/Sand Leather. I would have considered the K. Beige, but I have not seen it.

    Anyone have the Lumbar support or Premium sound system and have any comments? I have had back problems and would like the high-end sound, but the budget line has to be drawn somewhere.

  • lgrosslgross Posts: 55
    You should be able to negotiate Euro Delivery price down the same way as domestic delivery. A reasonable deal is $1400 over Euro-delivery invoice and there are no MACO (advertising) charges on Euro Delivery. However, some marketing areas have a "rule" that there are no discounts on euro deliveries. Just go do a different marketing area.

    You will find the comfort seats well worth the price if you have a back problem. They offer more adjustments than just the lumbar support. Even those without back problems should find them worthwhile.
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    Yes, it is possible to negotiate down the price for ED, but probably only with dealers familiar with the process (many may honestly believe it's impossible and decline to do it because of all the paperwork involved for them just to do ED). Ask around here and for suggestions about dealers in your area.

    First, I highly recommend the sport package. It doesn't have adjustable lumbar support, but it's more than ample in my opinion. And those seats hug you well, and the suspension tuning is sublime. Go test it out at your dealer to see the differences (and feel free to test the comfort seats as well).

    As for premium sound, this is a highly debated topic. I got it and am very pleased with the system. However, others rightly point out you can probably do better for the $1200 (although you'll have to research components and find a good place to install them, and integration with the factory head-unit may not be as clean as it is with DSP). My recommendation: Bring your favorite CD to your dealer and spend some time with both the standard (which you may find more than acceptable) and the DSP systems.

    Good luck.
  • I got a price of 1800 over invoice (plus got 5.9% financing) on an ED BMW 530i (5-spd, sport/ premium) last spring. Paid $38.9 whereas US MSRP was $44.5. ED is NOT that much work for the dealer and, very importantly, the car does NOT come out of their allocation (as long as it's not an M-Series, Z8, etc.) So, in that sense it's an extra car they get to sell.

    You can get a great deal that way.
  • Thanks for the responses.

    At 6'3", I do not like the comfort seats since the extra shoulder support is too low for me, actually making low back support worse. My back has been mostly under control lately, but I would like enough support for 2 weeks touring Europe and some driving vacations in coming years. The standard seats are fairly comfortable, and I have not found many lumbar controls in other makes that help much.

    I would like the Sport package, but pricing and dealing with winter tires make me hesitate. I will give the standard sound system a "test drive".

    I am in central NJ, and the Freehold dealer has done ED and has one in the works for this May. Today when I brought up ED, my sales person stated "With Euro Delivery, the price is the price." I haven't pushed him yet, and I'll see what I can do on Monday. There are about 3 other dealers I could try, one near my work, the others are less convenient.

    I am looking for delivery June 24 and was just able to hold 4 frequent flyer seats to Munich June 22/23 and return from Paris July 9. There should be plenty of time to set this up.

    Thanks again, Bob
  • Can anyone recommend a dealer in Southern California that will negotiate on a European Delivery 530?

    The dealer near me is trying to tell me that ED is non negotiable.

    Thank you,
    E. Stone
  • lgrosslgross Posts: 55
    Try Wide World of Cars in NY just over the border. See Barney Friedman. There are also 2 or 3 dealers in NJ North of I80 that deal on ED.

    Comfort seat lumbar support moves up and down as well as in and out. I don't know about the regular seats.
  • Patelli:

    I would try Southbay or Steve Thomas, and stay away from Beverly Hills and Santa Monica, if price, knowledge and service are important. I can't speak to either's experience with Euro delivery. And for everyone heading to Muenchen, try traveling south to Northern Italy - such as Garda. The food and weather are far better than anything in Bavaria or Austria - I know my Deutsch friends would readily agree.
  • Yeah, I got the same story AT FIRST on ED pricing. In fact, the first dealer I went to said they were "forbidden by BMW" to discount the price.

    In later discussions, guess what? They countered with a discounted price after I had obtained one elsewhere. I ended up buying from the dealer who was straight with me from the outset (even though he was located farther away).

    Remember, there are many salespeople out there who can look you in the face and tell you a bald-faced lie. There's no excuse for that, except that at some "old school" dealerships these behaviors are encouraged if not mandated.
  • Always though of a BMW as a unique vehicle, but once I saw the pics of the new 5 I realised that it won't be any more. IMHO the new 5 looks so much like lexus GS.

    just look at the rear door at

    down at the bottom of the page

  • bschaefer - please email me, I might be a able to get you a better deal than $808 off list (which is laughable). Thx.
  • Just went to local BMW dealer here in South Florida and trying to decide between 325/330/525/530. Trying to stay under 40K for the car, but willing to spend a little extra for the right specs. Can anyone offer what I can expect to pay for these vehicles? The dealer seems to be pushing the 525s. Is this engine underpowered?
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    First, only you can determine what's underpowered. If you're looking for a quick sports sedan, the other three models you mentioned would fit the bill better, but if you're looking for a luxury car with more features than the 3-series and handles extremely well (especially with the sport package), the 525 may fit the bill.

    But stay true to your budget. If you're looking to keep it under 40k, do yourself a favor and don't even look at the 5-series. My 530i--well loaded with almost everything except nav--stickered for a hair under 49k, and I bought it for $46.5. But with taxes, fees, and a couple of accessories, it came to $50k.

    If I were you, I'd first drive the 325i. You may find it offers everything you need and want. If you still need more power, look at the 330i, which fails to impress almost no one. I elected the 530i because I found the 330 cramped by comparison and its interior was not as well designed or constructed of as fine materials.

    But it's a hoot to drive, and if my cap were 40k the choice would have been easy--the 330.
  • I went to the dealer looking for the 3 series, but my wife fell in love with this titaniam silver 525 base without auto trans. I think the only options were premium and Zenons and stickered about 40Kish I think. Wife can drive stick because we drove a Volvo 240 stick for over ten years. I was not impressed with 325 stock audio and cannot remember what the stock audio in the 5 series is like? I have a feeling dealer would like to move this car for a good price? Would an offer of Invoice be unheard of in the BMW world? Thanks for the help!
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    Inovoice for a BMW is generally rare, but apparently there's still 2001 525's around dealers are just itching to get rid of, and I wouldn't be surprised if they'd sell them at or near invoice. (By the way, the "invoice" prices you find out on this site and others aren't the final price the dealer pays. He may get back refunds based on volume sales, customer satisfaction ratings, and other factors.)
    So, basically, give it a shot.
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