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Old 04-14-2019, 11:38 AM
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Ok, after much consternation I believe I have finally settled on a used 2016 BMW 528i for my next commuter car. Going with BMW Certified Pre-Owned.
Keeping the truck, but want something more efficient for the 65 mile a day round trip, and want to keep the miles off the truck. Normally my second car is something sporty and fun, but my elderly parents live with me - my Dad cannot get up into the truck. So for the foreseeable future I will have to drive a sedan. Prefer rear wheel drive, so that narrows things.

So, I'm interested in hearing the ownership experience of those who've had them, and am especially interested in driving experience with the turbo four (528). I would normally be predisposed to the six cylinder car, but am looking for fuel mileage and budget. The six adds a bunch to the price, and I'm not sure I care about it on a luxo barge. I was originally looking at 3 & 4 series, but found a 5 that I like, for essentially comparable prices, and the extra size is a good thing when dealing with old people, walkers, etc.

So what says the THT masses?
Old 04-14-2019, 12:31 PM
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Definitely smart to go with the 5 over the 3 or 4 if the backseats will be used by people.

I think some of the earliest turbo 4's had a timing chain guide or tensioner issue but that won't be an issue on a '16. My sample size is small but both my father and better half have cars using this engine and they have been flawless over many years of use. I couldn't say the same of our turbo 6's. It can be a little raucous in an x1 but the 5 has lots of sound deadening.

If you aren't looking for alternatives, ignore this last paragraph, but since you mentioned luxo-barge as if to say you are willing to give up some sporting pretensions, I can't help but suggest a Lexus for its comparatively high reliablity and soft handling. Even though the 4 cylinder seems to be the most reliable BMW engine in my admittedly limited experience, a Lexus is even more so.
Old 04-14-2019, 12:37 PM
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Buy the extended warranty if you plan to own it past the orginal factory warranty.
Old 04-14-2019, 01:34 PM
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I've owned 9 BMWs (3 e39s, 2 e46s one of which was an M, an e60 station wagon, two e90s, one of which was a diesel, and now own a F80 M3). I've never bought one new. None of them were under warranty when I bought them. All of them were quite reliable. I don't live near a dealership, and I do most of my maintenance and repairs myself. Parts are pretty cheap, and available online, and the cars are pretty easy to work on (at least the older ones). I also have a very good independent mechanic for the work that is above my head, or too much of a nuisance for me to do myself. All of mine were inline 6s so I have no experience with the 4 cylinders.

After my first BMW (a 1997 528i), I was going to get a different car. Nothing I found was as good as a BMW at the price range I was in, so I ended up with a 2002 530i.

Obviously, I love the cars. Some people think they're cars for rich douchebags. But most of the rednecks around here, and their kids, drive pickup trucks that cost more than the most expensive BMW I've bought (my current M3, or, more accurately, my wife's m3).
Old 04-14-2019, 02:10 PM
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I study cars a lot. Ive owned 3 BMW's. The new cars are trash from a reliability standpoint. they are pretty to look at, but break down early and often. buy lexus.
Old 04-14-2019, 04:41 PM
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Pray it doesn't break
Old 04-14-2019, 04:46 PM
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Getting BMW for commuter car... cmon!

I love a BMW, but really only the M class for performance driving. If you want a "luxury" commuter car you are much better off in a Lexus.

If you want a BMW get one, but if you are trying to make a rational/good decision, your use case isn't a good one.

Full disclosure, I have had 3 Lexus's with a combined 600,000 miles on them, nothing but oil, brakes, and standard service. Sold them all running great for the fair market value.
Old 04-14-2019, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Design59 View Post
Ok, after much consternation I believe I have finally settled on a used 2016 BMW 528i for my next commuter car. Going with BMW Certified Pre-Owned.
Keeping the truck, but want something more efficient for the 65 mile a day round trip, and want to keep the miles off the truck. Normally my second car is something sporty and fun, but my elderly parents live with me - my Dad cannot get up into the truck. So for the foreseeable future I will have to drive a sedan. Prefer rear wheel drive, so that narrows things.

So, I'm interested in hearing the ownership experience of those who've had them, and am especially interested in driving experience with the turbo four (528). I would normally be predisposed to the six cylinder car, but am looking for fuel mileage and budget. The six adds a bunch to the price, and I'm not sure I care about it on a luxo barge. I was originally looking at 3 & 4 series, but found a 5 that I like, for essentially comparable prices, and the extra size is a good thing when dealing with old people, walkers, etc.

So what says the THT masses?
I bought my 2014 528i x drive last year with 74k miles. 16k bucks. I am now at 94k no issues at all. I love the car and the features are more than enough for me. Use premium fuel and good to go. Good idea going for pre owned and certified for the huge savings. I would never buy one new, BMW as a brand is probably biggest depreciating car on the road so it works out well for the second owners. Good luck!
Old 04-14-2019, 06:23 PM
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Don't listen to all the negativity. I've owned a few and they were the best cars I've ever owned. When it comes to design, performance, and just seat of the pants feel few cars equal a BMW and I'd say no other sedan with the exception of a few Audi and MB AMG. Lexus... got the t-shirt but won't be buying another.

I will say I much prefer the 5-series to the 3-series but the only 28i I had was a 2012 328i commuter car and it made a great commuter car. However, before I had a 550i and the two are simply incomparable. If you can splurge for a 535i with the "comfort seats" I recommend it. That seat option alone is enough for me to buy a 5-series over a 3-series. I bet it would be difficult to find a 528i with those seats though; few 528i are optioned out and that was a $1700 option on top of the leather interior.
Old 04-14-2019, 06:38 PM
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I spent several days with one that was the dealership's loaner while my car was in for service. Perfectly comfortable commuter car. Offers little in the way of driving excitement or involvement, but comfortable place to run up some highway miles. As long as you have the CPO warranty and like the car, I don't see any reason not to do it.
Old 04-14-2019, 06:51 PM
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paying 60k for a 4 banger... GTFO. give me a v8 for that price point.
Old 04-14-2019, 08:24 PM
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Thanks for the input guys. Lots of love for Lexus. I get it, I’ve just never cared for them. For some reason I just fit better in German cars - from several VW’s to a small MB - I just seem to fit them better.
Keep the info coming.
Old 04-14-2019, 10:41 PM
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Do NOT do the 4 cyl. Do a test drive and you'll see the 3.0l 6 cyl is totally the way to go.

Trust me, ONLY get the 535Xi

Sales on the sedan are way down, the X5 series is NOW the most popular. They will do deals on the 535. The 3.0L with the single turbo is WAY more reliable than the 4 cyl.
Old 04-14-2019, 11:03 PM
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Love them Bimmers. It's a drivers car. Agree with the 6 banger engine as the one to get.
I'm getting a 2002 Z3 M Coupe shipped from VA. The clown shoe in Laguna Seca blue. Should be a fun car to drive.
Old 04-15-2019, 05:34 AM
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Google "N20 BMW engine and timing chain problems"
Old 04-15-2019, 06:15 AM
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true^ just make sure your pre-owned one has had the update.
Old 04-15-2019, 06:32 AM
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Wife has the 328i and loves it. Better fuel millage than my 335is and plenty of power for her.
She purchased the extended warranty and used it once when she ran over a piece of metal and blew out the sidewall on a run flat.
I can never get used the it shutting off at stop lights to save fuel.

Doug
Old 04-15-2019, 07:23 AM
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If you're looking for fuel mileage and budget keep in mind that BMW recommends that (doesn't "require", there's a difference) premium fuel be used in all of their vehicles.
Old 04-15-2019, 07:26 AM
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"Big Money Wasted"
Old 04-15-2019, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by DEBTICATED View Post
"Big Money Wasted"

so clever

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