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BMW 5-Series Sedans



  • You might want to check out Steve Diamond's website at

    He shows updated 2002 5-series Invoice prices - both for U.S. and European


    Based on my experience last year - and reading various boards - I'd say

    you could think of settling for a TOTAL (excluding tax, title, and registration)

    of around $ 1500 over invoice (car + options).

    Have fun (and luck) in your decision process.


  • mcq7159mcq7159 Posts: 20
    Thanks for helping this rookie out -- I'm following your eurobuyers link now!
  • snagielsnagiel Posts: 750
    Thanks, Pat, for cooling this off. I was trying to keep the criticisms more to the argument, so if it got personal, riez you have my apologies. Honestly, it's a little silly, since as I said we're talking about shades of the best sports sedan out there, which in and of itself is a relatively trivial topic in the grand scheme of things. But we're car nuts and tend to get worked up sometimes. Anyway, sorry again.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    Yes, the 5 Series is a truly magnificent car, in all of its variations, from 525iA up to 540iM. And, yes, we both are car enthusiasts. Does tend to get the pulse poundin' and heart racin'! (FYI. Busenkell's 1981 book, BMW Since 1945, makes prominent mention that the first BMW with MacPherson struts was the 1500 in 1962. All BMWs up to 1981, except one, used McP struts. The M1 super-car, in 1979, used SLA. Even the Z8 uses McP struts.)
  • I am interested in leasing a 530 automatic with premium package. The best number I have gotten is 569/month 0 down for 36 months (plus tax); what would be the best deal I could hope to get (in the NYC area). Thanks.
  • Like I've posted before, it doesn't matter if it is a 528, 530, or 540, they are awesome cars.
  • jvalnyjvalny Posts: 2
    I own a 2001, 530 sport package. I had the fan replaced twice and still get an intermittant high pitched noise. I will be going in for service very soon and maybe the service dept. will provide a fix. ----- Very frustrating---
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    ..just kidding!

    P.S. Bobsky - "Buyer Beware": I am very surprised to hear the number of electrical problems you had with your 5-series. I have several friends who have E's, C's and S's who have had quite a few quirks of their own. I have a standing bet with a friend with an E430 as to whether all of his headlights and foglights will come on on any given try. So far, I'm ahead. Nothing serious, but very annoying to him. I was also briefly considering a C32 and the Edmunds C class forum was full of complaints about the new keys not working, cars not starting, etc. I thought the current 5-series was rated higher than Mercedes on the electrical front (at least consumer reports says so). Apparantly not?
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    habitat1... How sad but true. Just like in a new little basic economy car costing $10,000! Should we start a campaign to update BMW's steering and suspension technology? Don't they know this is the 21st century? Maybe they are working on secret cold fusion/perpetual motion/zero emission/flying-hover cars??? :)
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    ..working on a hydrogen powered car several years ago. Saw it on Discovery/TLC/CNN or one of those non-network channels. Showed a guy pumping some liquid hydrogen into the back of a 7-series. NASA provided the moonsuits and gloves.

    Haven't heard anything since, but hope they didn't consult Ford on the placement of the fuel tank.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    habitat1... BMW has long been a leader in hydrogen-fuelled cars going back into 1980s and maybe earlier. But thinking they have now moved onto fuel cell technology. Hydrogren bulky to store and refrigerate, as well as create retail "hydrogen" stations. BMW also a world leader in "green" manufacturing and car recycling.
  • hnnhnn Posts: 34
    jvalny, ask your dealer to see if they can order the mechanism for installing the Fan system similar to the 2002 530i model. My 2002 530i has the fan mounted directly to engine block and driven by a belt (same Fan system as my prev. 2001 540i). Not sure if they can do it. If they can, may be you will loose some hps due to direct fan connection to the engine?? Like I stated in my prev. post. May be 2002 530i got tweak to provide same 225hp with new fan system.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    ..the new 5 look just doesn't do it for me. Looks like a cross between an 1990 5-series and 1990 7-series. Very bulky looking.

    I often wondered how BMW could improve the exterior styling of the current 5. If this is it, they didn't. Albeit I am a loyal BMW fan, I find the new E-class to be much better looking. Mercedes is going in the right direction, BMW is regressing, IMO. Heck, I'd much rather have a current 540i with RB steering than the new one with rack and pinion (beat you to it, riez!).

    The Z5 looks pretty good though.
  • RE: Fuel Economy
    It's been my understanding that you actually get better fuel economy by accelerating quickly and maintaining higher cruise speed. (according to Car & Driver) I've also been told by a dealer that shifting to a higher gear early and applying more gas to get the car up to speed uses more fuel than getting up to speed using lower gears.

    RE: RB vs RP
    My understanding on this is that RB is better suited for heavier cars or trucks. The "kick back" from a inherantly more sensitive (and more linear) system like RP can be harsh on a truck/SUV or similarly heavy vehicle. I also assumed that RP can't handle too much weight. Having said that, new car-based SUVs are now being equipped with RP (probably fortified). Of course, these new vehicles are built with no offroading or heavy payload in mind.

    RE: IRS
    I owned the '90 Max with IRS. And driven a newer rental Max with the "patented" beam rear axle. Without question, the beam was a practical compromise. Nissan did a fine job of making the non-IRS work as good as it does but it can't replace a "finely tuned" IRS as found in BMWs. The non-IRS rears its ugly head on high-speed corners with uneven surfaces. But having said that, non-IRS alone won't stop me from buying the Max.
  • g_carg_car Posts: 46
    Habitat1 I agree with your comments on latest MB vs BMW with regards to electrical problems I've been hearing the same thing with regards to the new MB models. I'm not doubting Bobsky is having a hell of an issue with electrical problems but its a huge leap to saying somehow the BMW 5 series in general has major problems with electricals. The same buyer beware sign hangs off these Internet boards. We could do an informal survey here to see how many folks have had problems with the electrics and what the problem turned out to be. As the cars become more "electric" and complex I would expect the proportion of problems caused by electrical components as compared to other mechanical parts of the car will go up. Just my 2 cents.
  • hnnhnn Posts: 34
    BMW has always rated MPG higher on stick shift than automatic. Can you use the same shifting method as described in your post to acchieve similar MPG rating as stick shift using steptronic transmission.
    If not why? Thanks.

    Bobsky, I am surprised to hear the electrical problems with the 5 series. I drove the 2001 540i for almost a year (before I traded it three weeks ago due to a bad accident) and I had NO problem at all. My friend had an older 540i (1999) and still did not have any problem with electrical... My two weeks old 2002 530i had no problem so far.

  • jim52jim52 Posts: 161
    How many miles per year for the lease? Are automatic and premium package the only options? Also, how much over invoice is the cap cost?
  • jim52jim52 Posts: 161
    It looks like Edmunds finally updated the invoice prices to reflect the increase. Seems like a very slim margin between invoice and list on options - only about a 8 or 9% markup over invoice. Automatic is only 5%. Is BMW providing any additional incentives to dealers or are their profits really being squeezed? Is less than 2K over invoice still realistic?
  • pen101pen101 Posts: 238
    Beware, leases are very tricky. Best place to ask lease questions is on the Edmunds board specifically dealing with leases. It is an excellent source of information. I learned so much just following the Q's and A's on the board. It is impossible to know if you are getting a good deal without more information. There are many variables in a lease to consider, including: money factor, residual, security deposits, cap cost, mileage allowance, total months, invoice price and MSRP. Also, the dealer knows ways to structure a lease so that they will make money on you without you even knowing it. The bottom line payment may be the same, but they may be making money on you. For example, I caught my dealer doing it, and by doing nothing more than changing the structure of the lease (lowering MF's, applying security deposits and lowering cap costs) I saved almost $3,000 in the lease process.
  • hnn, I think you might come close but not the same results. No matter what, auto trans is not a direct mechanical link. You lose some power/efficiency in the translation.
  • I'm replying to an old message, but I thought I'd end the debate on this one.

    I actually emailed Motorola about using a standard StarTAC with the BMW phone kit. They said the BMW phone has special programming that allows it to support all the features of the car.

    Thus, there is no way to get a standard StarTAC to work.
  • correction - there is a way. If your P8767 or old StarTAC is unlocked, and you get your hands on the actual BMW-specific software and equipment necessary to program it - then yeah, you can. But that's highly unlikely, unless you work for Motorola's cell phone division. :( It's all in the software, that's the saddest thing.
  • studboystudboy Posts: 12
    I plan on reading this whole 5-Series thread. I am thinking of getting a 5-Series (or 3-Series) in a year or so (When the wifes Toyota van is paid - I can afford another car now but want to wait and get something NICE!). I will probably buy used and spend around 30K. I am going to do extensive research by Web and driving to dealers (new and 'superstores of import' type of thing) and checking personal ads. I know a lot about them as far as model years, motors, options, specs and the like. Just have never driven one, but I will before long. What can anyone tell me of who to definitely check out and who to definitely stay away from?
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 4,142
    a lot of. . .(deleted it to avoid "issues" with Pat or others on the board) to use "studboy" as a handle when you're waiting for your wife to sell a Toyota van in order to finance the BMW.

    Perception is often reality.

    It's a great car. A lot of poseurs drive it. . .for all the wrong reasons.
  • cmr530icmr530i Posts: 278
    Your comment(#2064) made my day! Thanks for the laugh! :)
  • studboystudboy Posts: 12
    Your reply is funny. I'm not waiting to sell the van, just prefer to have only one payment. When the van is done I will buy a nice ride for myself. I just happen to budget my money. We are buying a bigger house currently and we are buying a camper this summer. I am far from arrogant. The name is just something I made up. So are you from Canada? Another reason I am not buying the car for awhile is I may also be buying two new snowmobiles, but with the crappy winters lately (even your way) it is not wise. Grew up in North Dakota, so don't come back with how tough your winters are. So, I'm a poser? What kind of person drives a BMW, and what do you have? Maybe your right. If you supply me with the demographics of a proper BMW owner then maybe I should stray from them. Not much more than buying more Toyotas.
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 4,142
    Just jerking your chain a bit. All in good fun.

    Used to live in Alberta & B.C., but am now a desert rat in AZ. Really prefer the cold weather & pleasant weather when the days are long rather than short, but my job's here, so so am I.

    Enjoy the car, as I'm sure you will. My issue with BMW was created back in the 80's when it seemed more people bought them to be seen in them than bought them to really drive, though the same could be said of most luxury brands. Trouble is, owning a BMW and not excercising it is truly a waste, in my (never) humble opinion. You kind of expect that mindset from the Lexus & Mercedes crowd. Somehow BMW became a necessary accessory of the 80's yuppies, so that's my perception problem, which may or may not reflect reality.

    I drive a Lincoln LS with a manual.
  • studboystudboy Posts: 12
    I can definitely understand your reasoning. I'm 34, married with a three year old (another on the way) and live in Maryland because of good jobs. One reason I may not buy a BMW is because I don't want people who do or do not know me to judge me by what I drive. But then again, I could spend 30K+ on a sport 'ute and people would not think of me as stuck up. I drive 76 miles round trip daily and really don't need 4 wheel drive in MD (growing up in N. Dakota is my basis for this). Also, I will be spending most of my weekend time with the 'fam in the van or whatever replaces that. The wife picks up the kids as her job (2nd grade teacher) is just down the road and daycare is just blocks from there. I will be in the car mostly by myself with some running to hockey practice and the like. Do miss decent snow. My wifes has in-laws in NH and Maine. Go up three or four times a year. Will be up Presidents Day weekend for a snowmobile trip. Went 'sledding' New Years week as well.
  • taylorttaylort Posts: 31
    Studboy -
    Some of my friends have purchased BMWs at Select Auto and Advantage Auto in VA.

    You can see samples on their inventory at the following web sites.

    I have a 530 that I purchased new from Passport BMW and I got a pretty good deal. They have a good selection of used BMWs as well.

    Happy hunting
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