When I bought my car, the 325i models sold in North America were being built in South Africa. My 325ix model, and the 330i and 330ix models, are built in Germany.
I'm not sure if they've moved production around since then.
After almost two years, I still love my car. I've had a few more small problems with it to add to the considerable list above (CHECK ENGINE light came on, airbag light came on) but the warranty service continues to be excellent and I think (knock wood) that I've shaken out most of the bugs.
I'm looking at a 2004 325xi with a 5-speed manual and 24,000 miles. Kelley Blue Book says retail should be about $30,000. I'm a cheapskate, so if I pay that much money for a used car, I expect a fabulous car that will have very few problems that I will keep for many years. Realistic?
I am not saying the BMW's are completely unreliable, however... if you're going to pay $30K for a used beemer...that's the HIGH retail, & forget about it lasting long... even if it is new... they just don't hold up without problems.
You want decent gas mileage, AWD, great looks and awesome reliability? Go with a Subaru Impreza or Legacy... and you'll get much more than you pay for = great bargain.
You can't compare Subaru to BMW. The handling and overall driving experience of BMW is much better than Subaru. Add a little snob appeal of BMW and you get the picture. Unless you are from India or any Asian country buy Japanese.
I just brought my used 2003 Bimmer 325xi with 39k mil and I love this. Even though its almost 5 years old this car runs amazing, mint condition and I got it for under 18k. Its true after you get a Bimmer your life does change and feels different. I love this car and after a few years I would buy myself a newer model or even a M3 (if I can afford it errr..)
Still the feeling is so much different when driving a BMW then any other car I drove before, even a Mercedes, Audi, or Infinity. The handling is just amazing for this car as well, have you try making curve in a highway going at 100mph+? funn.
1st car of my life: 1962 BMW 1500 (4 door sedan). Loved it
2nd car of my life: 1972 Datsun 240Z - Loved it.
3rd car 1987 Subaru Legacy - Loved it
4th car 1995 Subaru Legacy Outback - Loved it.
And now looking for a another car... Subaru of course comes up top because need 4wd or AWD, BUT... after ugh... 20 years of Subaru... I'm going back to BMW.
Looking at a used 325XI... happily.