1994 BMW 5 Series 525i SE estate 2.5 from UK and Ireland


Superb car, built to the highest quality - that's a BMW!


The guy I brought the car from was absolutely useless, didn't want to know about problems with the car even when it was under warranty.

Let's start with the transmission, automatic gearbox was cream crackered when I brought the car, I couldn't tell on the test drive as I didn't take it very far. The car insisted doing 60 mph in second gear, this sounded dreadful.

Then, the air conditioning was coming out hot in the middle of summer, it was basically bloody useless.

Then the double sunroof packed in 1 year after I brought the car, just after the warranty ran out. The guy at the garage didn't want to know, of course. I went to my BMW garage and they told me it would cost £1200 to fix, so I have disconnected the motor.

General Comments:

Apart from those problems, the car is great. The guy at the garage fixed the air conditioning and the transmission, I knew he didn't want to, but I just kept arguing with him.

The leather seats are total luxury.

Full electrics, loads of speakers dotted around, great sound.

I had a bit of trouble finding the button for the total closure, but I got there in the end.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th August, 2001

9th Jan 2002, 08:48

I know what you mean about that total closure button, very tempremental!

23rd Jun 2003, 06:22

I am seeking advice rather than placing a comment. In Jan 2003 my car, a 525iSE, had an oil service at BMW garage and within six months the dash is flashing low oil warning message. The car has done only 82000 miles, it's an L reg and has a full BMW service history. Since the service, in Jan 2003, only 5000 miles has been clocked in the car. My question is should the car be running low in oil so soon after an oil service? I am pretty sure there are no leaks.

Secondly, when I first start the car there is a ticking noise, from the engine, which lasts for few seconds than it ceases. I was told this could mean the tappits needs adjusting. Again my question is for a car of such quality should the parts be mal-functioning so soon as the car has only done 82000 miles?

Feedback would be appreciated.


1994 BMW 5 Series E34 540iA Touring 4.0 V8 32v Quad Cam from UK and Ireland


A high performance, reliable, mileage eating bargain


Seat rails are worn (both driver and passenger) meaning that both seats rock a fair bit - when I have £300, I will get them replaced.

The car doesn't like starting after long journeys. I think it's down to the coils. BMW will be looking at this soon.

Bonnet catch and cable broken, replacements are being fitted next week by BMW (under the used car warranty hopefully).

I believe there is a strong burning smell which comes after hard acceleration - BMW couldn't find anything.

General Comments:

This is our 8th BMW so we are confident of the brand, however I am not sure this has been our best purchase.

The previous owner bought the car from a BMW dealer and just renewed the warranty - so I have until October to get all the major faults rectified.

This car has a phenomenal spec (thanks to its first owners!), including electric heated sports seats (which are absolutely brilliant, and on long journeys are remarkably comfortable despite being the "sports" version). The Automatic Air Conditioning (not the standard Air Con) is brilliant as are the other bits and bobs the car has.

Coming from a 328i Touring Manual to this (an Automatic), has made me realise that auto cars are not for me. When overtaking the car has a slight delay in realising that it should shift down a gear thus giving the best acceleration. Otherwise acceleration is pretty impressive, if I had the 6 speed box, I suppose it really would be even more impressive.

This car also has the optional traction control, and even though it's an automatic, on full acceleration you do need its help - when I have TC off and floor it from a stand still, it really does fly about the place!

When on long journeys, as a passenger, going in the car is a complete dream... fall into the seats, benefit from the performance of the V8 and amazing handling.

This car is a brilliant mileage eater, and I suppose explains why most examples of these cars have high mileages. They are also tremendously reliable - once I have my problems sorted out, I will have a car in top condition.

When I have got "bored"! of this, I will be selling it for a 540i Touring (6 speed manual) - because I can't really fault anything apart from the "OK" performance.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th April, 2001