1984 BMW 5 Series 533i 3.2l SOHC 6 cylinder from North America


Nice balance of sports car and family sedan


Not much since I've driven it. Brake Pressure accumulator the only thing that actually crapped out (oh..besides the radio...) - brake pads - the usual. The previous own had installed new rad, wiring harness, all vacuum hoses, control arm bushings, new exhaust.. Paint is starting to go, but... no rust.

General Comments:

I picked up the car via a private sale. Previous owner got it in a trade and had lost storage. Found out it started life as a leased car, then 1 ten year stint to one owner. Sat in 4 different lots for the last 6 months of it's life.

Car came with leather heated seats & leather steering wheel - in very good shape - no rips or cracks. Came with heated seats (which worked) - that were very nice in winter.

Car has great pick up for a 4 door sedan. Gobs of torque, loves to cruise at 130kph while being rather miserly with fuel (2200 rpm). Crisp handling, suspension is nice and taut. Excellent road feel. Great brakes, very powerful, great feel.

Acoustically..the stock sound system was pretty damn poor. Thank god for aftermarket...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th June, 2001

1984 BMW 5 Series 520i 2 litre petrol from Finland


A true car - not a Japanese tin can


Nothing big has gone wrong, one must remember the numbers on the clock.

The head gasket has been changed by the previous owner. I have had only little problems with the engine. The water pump broke around 330 kilometers, but you hear that everything's not OK much before the pump breaks. The valve for auxiliary air was changed around 370 000 kilometers.

Those are all problems with the engine.

It starts even in Finnish winter like a brand new car (despite of -35 degrees temperature...)

The front suspension arms had to be changed when I got the car. The front rear discs and pads were changed around 300 000 kilometers.

General Comments:

I drove wa hole winter 140 kilometers a day with this car, since I worked in neighbouring town. The car worked perfectly. Average consumption in highway traffic was about 7,8 litres per 100 km. I think it's amazingly little, because this is not a light car and it's so comfortable and quiet that I could accept bigger consumption without a scream.

I love this car. It was re-painted in summer of 1998 and with new alloy rims and waxed surface it's quite a beauty to look at.

I hope this lasts for ever.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th June, 2000

3rd Jan 2001, 03:26

I can not understand statement "Japanese tin can". I can take an example: Nissan Sunny 1.6 4D sedan 1989 975 kg, Ford Escort 1.6 GT 1989 935 kg and Audi 80 1.6 4D sedan 1989 1020 kg. If you think about size and shapes of those cars, you might wonder why Audi (most expensive of those cars) is so light?

Also you can check which is the heaviest registered saloon car type in Finland (I give you a hint: it is a Japanese cross-country vehicle).

8th Mar 2001, 11:45

Ford = rusty tin cans, Nissan = rusty tin cans.

BMW = pristene, no rust even at 19 years old, no tin can appearance, but the badge BMW says everything (quality, speed, fun, proud ownership etc etc)

10th Mar 2001, 10:16

Indeed, the word "car" shouldn't be in the same sentence with Japanese. What they build in that country are just some means of transportations that have no spirit, no value, and are just useless imitations.

16th Mar 2001, 02:05

Japanese build cars like they appreciate their music.KARAOKE!cheap imitations.can't beat BMW, VOLVO OR SAAB!

20th Dec 2001, 04:56

I've never owned a Japanese car but there are enough of them around my area (Scotland) so they must be OK in winter.

I have had two more recent BMWs and run an old W124 Mercedes Touring now. My wife has a 13 year old Porsche 944 and we have an old VW polo as a runaround.

I am thinking of buying a BMW 5201 1984 model with 76,000 miles on it for a good price - can't believe I'd even consider anything that old if it wasn't German or Scandinavian metal.

16th Nov 2003, 11:05

Definitely, I agree with the author of the fourth comment. The Japanese Automobile Industry is just like Karaoke, which means that every car that some Occidental Automaker, makes they just copy the same car.

Take a look at the Lexus for example; cheap imitations from the Mercedes-Benz. They can be good cars, but still it isn't patch on the Mercedes.