1986 BMW 5 Series Reviews from UK and Ireland

1986 BMW 5 Series M535i 3.5

Model year1986
Year of manufacture1986
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 3.5 Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 4 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired85000 miles
Most recent distance138000 miles
Previous carBMW 3 Series


A soon to be appreciating classic


Had to have the head redone at 110,000. Partly my fault because the water pipe hose split and caused it to overheat.

Seats have been changed and re done.

General Comments:

Wow what a car. Its great looking (Metallic Dark Green) and really goes and is reliable.

It is very thirsty and the original TRX tires are hard to source. My sits on 17" ones now.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th March, 2006

1986 BMW 5 Series 528i SE

Year of manufacture1986
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired157000 miles
Most recent distance169000 miles
Previous carBMW 5 Series


Armchair express!!!


The backs fall off the front seats, and the cloth wears out on the side of the drivers seat.

Watch out for rusting fuel pipes on top of the tank sender unit; remove the inspection cover to reveal this hidden and over looked problem inside the boot on saloons.

Dashboard's service interval L.E.D.s fail to reset when the back up battery goes dead, which can cause the eco gauge to stop working in time, then the speedometer can stop as well!

On the M30 engine, the electronic throttle bypass that controls the idle speed from cold is useless. Changed it under warranty and gave up; no change in cold start slow running (only 500 RPM). However it still runs in mid winter and soon warms up. It's just an annoyance, with it being on the verge of stalling for the first few minutes each morning.

General Comments:

The car, otherwise, is a pleasure to own and drive. It's as reliable as the Planet Earth, a superb motorway cruiser. The 4 speed auto gearbox, in lockup, the engine is only turning over a mere 2100 RPM at 70 mph.

What a motor that 2.8 six pot on E.F.I. really is. Overall average is 17.5 MPG over a year's motoring (and that's driven modestly). Lots of short trips of less than 4 miles contributes to the poor figures. In heavy traffic it's down to 13 MPG. The best over 30 MPG. I still love it, the E28 is a winner.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th September, 2004

9th Nov 2006, 11:00

A proper fuel-injected E28 5-series (`82-`88), should not have any issues with cold-start-up. A coolant temp. switch (sits just behind/above the thermostat housing). It has a a wire or two (depending on model) coming out of it. It reads the coolant temp.. When dead cold, it will allow the car to idle at a higher than normal speed for 2-5 min., about 750-1000 rpm. Once the engine coolant has warmed, this switch allows the rpm to lower to the normal rpm, about 550-750 rpm. It is crucial to make sure the correct switch is installed for the model - if not, very poor running will result. Also verify that the cold start valve is functioning properly.

Average review marks: 7.6 / 10, based on 2 reviews