2002 BMW X5 3.0

Faults:

I bought my BMW X5 3.0 brand new. I've had nothing but problems.

The most recent issue happened without any warning. The drivetrain and both front and rear transfer cases gave out. The cost to repair is $5200 USD.

I called BMW, and they admit they designed the drivetrain too short, which will cause unnecessary wear on the transfer case(s), which in turn was the cause of the transfer cases giving out too. The replacement drivetrain is a "modified" drivetrain that is longer. In my opinion, this constitutes a defective or faulty drivetrain! This means the drivetrain and/or transfer cases will give out, it's just a matter of time. BMW will not own up to the fact and stand behind their product.

I understand that I have 137k miles on my BMW, but I'm appalled that BMW knows about this and doesn't issue a recall, or at least notify its customers.

I will NEVER own another BMW!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 27th August, 2010

2002 BMW X5

Summary:

The problem is, it is expensive to maintain

Faults:

Problems with engine vent valve; oil all over the engine - repair cost $1600 plus.

Drivers side door handle quit being functional.

Radio MID unit quit.

Tailgate pops open at infrequent times.

Air conditioning compressor blew.

General Comments:

I drive this on long trips, usually about 3,000 miles at a time. Also sometimes tow a boat, the X has been great at this.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 4th March, 2010

2002 BMW X5 Sport 3.0

Summary:

If you like handing and performance, this car is for you - the rest need not apply

Faults:

In the five years and 50,000 miles I have had this car, the repair costs have been less than $300.

The valve cover gasket needed to be replaced: $30.

Intake elbow cracked: $15.

Door handle broke (common) : $90.

Window regulator attachment clips: $1.98.

The car has been dead reliable, even towing a 3500 lb trailer for 20,000 miles, and even pulling out tree stumps.

General Comments:

If you bought one new and paid $70 grand for it, you might be disappointed when the door handles get scratchy. But if you buy it used for $25 grand, it is a heck of a bargain.

I would recommend the 3.0 as it has more than enough power and is easier and cheaper to maintain. Regularly gets 21 mpg with the 5-speed, too.

If you have to have an automatic, keep on eye on the fluid levels.

If you want to own one out of warranty, be handy with tools or know a good independent mechanic. Taking these to the dealer is just not a cost-effective option.

If you enjoy older BMWs (I have four) and like to tinker, you'll find this car no better or worse than the rest of the line. Many of the "problems" reported (window regulator clips) are also prevalent in other models of the same year (e.g., E46).

BMWs have a high threshold of pain. If reliability and no maintenance (and no understanding of how cars work) is your bag, buy a Toyota or a Honda. BMWs are expensive, but that doesn't mean they are more reliable.

It handles great and hauls ass. That's why you buy a BMW. Want boring handling but higher reliability? Buy a Toyota - as simple as that.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th November, 2009

24th May 2016, 18:02

This is a typical fan review. You did all repairs by yourself, which most people won't do. The window regulator will cost $500 to fix at the dealer or even at a small garage. So your $300 repairs will be more like $5000 in real life.

26th May 2016, 09:51

A lot of people, as incomes rise, do not want to get their hands dirty. Staying an extra hour at white collar work could offset the work paid in a garage. But some really like the tech aspect and really want to understand what makes high end vehicles tick. I bought over 10k just in large toolboxes etc to not let others touch or possibly mess up my cars. That could have gone towards repairs, but I enjoy using mine. I've already recouped my tool cost by using YouTube videos on mine.

27th May 2016, 15:49

I enjoy it. And it's not really at all a financial consideration. It's pride in doing things you never tried before. I also like new upgrades. It's cool to get a package when you get home from work and upgrade your own vehicle. It might wait til a weekend, but it gets done. In addition you know the job was done and done properly, torqued correctly without shortcuts. With all the YouTube videos out today, it's a really a great way to build knowledge. If you buy a special new tool or two, often the savings more than cover it. At first I used Auto Zone's scanner and now own my own. I quit making excuses and even my sons have helped when only 8 or 9, handing me tools at first. Now they do much of their own work. At least they know how to change simple headlight bulbs, put in a battery, wipers etc at first. Now over time they do brakes and one did an engine rebuild. Sitting on a couch isn't for me. I consider all I just mentioned quality time with my children vs video games and BS.