1989 BMW 5 Series 535i SE 3.5 litre. Straight 6 petrol i from UK and Ireland


Not much slower than a M5


On-Board computer broke down, making a high pitch noise at 60000 miles.

General Comments:

This car drives like a dream.

Got 147mph out of here.

Very comfortable.

Built like a tank.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd July, 2002

1989 BMW 5 Series SE 2.5 from UK and Ireland


This car is bulletproof


Had the rear differential reconditioned at 200,000 miles cost £250.

Broken spring at 220,000 miles £80.

The dash packed in at 230,000 miles, managed to find secondhand one, £45.

Gear selector cable at 235,000 miles,£100.

Wiper linkage broke at 240,000 miles, repaired myself, part cost £8.

Rusting fuel pipes which go around the fuel tank still to fit parts cost £21.

General Comments:

It may seem as if there has been a lot of things went wrong with this car, however, it does 1000 miles every week and has never let me down once.

It gets a set of plugs when it misses at 100 MPH. although I have treated it to a couple of timing belts.

If the car was regularly serviced then I would say that you would expect reliability from a BMW. I am afraid it does not get serviced very often.

It gets hammered every day and never misses a beat.

I will be changing the car soon as it cannot possibly last forever and I feel its starting to look a bit dated now.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th June, 2002

10th Sep 2002, 20:29

I appreciate your review very much as I am currently in the market for a car for my wife and the 1989-92 525/535 series is one I have been seriously considering (along with the Mercedes 300E (same date range) and a Range Rover ('93-95 LWB), all automatics.

There are plenty of nay-sayers out there who think all cars should be trouble-free up to 300,000 miles or more, but having owned an older Porsche for 13 years (sadly gone now) I know that things will go wrong, and though they can be expensive, once fixed usually they last a good long time.

Horror stories abound, but I'm sure they are still the smaller portion of actual ownership experiences. People with bad experiences just make more noise. I feel good if I can buy one of these cars with about 150,000 miles on it for $7 - 9,000, and still get 50,000 - 100,000 miles out of it with good maintenance. Thanks again. Tom.

4th Oct 2006, 04:37

I bought my car in 2002 with 70,000 'ish genuine miles. It was an ex BMW employees car and came complete with all original invoices and a full service history with all invoices. It was not firing on two cylinders and the cause was bent exhaust valves. I spent £1,000 on having the head rebuilt, new cam belt and overall service, which added to the purchase price meant the vehicle cost a total of £2400. The current mileage is 110,000 miles and apart from oil and filter changes the only new costs have been replacement of two track rod end ball joints and a radiator, neither of which involved using Original Equipment parts, so total cost including labour was approx £150.The car stands idle at a Spanish airport for months at a time and always has to be started the first time with booster cables, but runs and starts perfectly normally thereafter. Every piece of equipment still works and the body is sound and rust free. I have another,more modern car, but I always enjoy coming back to the BMW and expect to be running it for many more miles.

1989 BMW 5 Series 535i 3.4 litre from North America


Timeless looks, performance, prestige, and value without the high cost

General Comments:

This car drives like it's still brand new.

It stops on a dime.

The car accelerates nicely above 3000 rpm, and really pulls to 6500.

This car is made for the highway; it's quiet, comfortable and looks great.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd March, 2002

17th Mar 2005, 21:38

I must agree... an absolute beast of a machine. I just recently sold my 1989 535i auto with 200kms on it because the maintenance of it's electronics was getting ridiculous (parts are not cheap, not even used). Had it since new... hate new BMW 5 series design. Will recommend this vehicle to anybody. Just Make sure you find one with all service records and low mileage. Timeless beauty and sophistication is what these vehicles are all about. Great for sons car!