1997 BMW 5 Series Reviews - Page 2 of 7

1997 BMW 5 Series 525 TDS SE turbo diesel from UK and Ireland

Model year1998
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2011
Engine and transmission turbo diesel Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired44000 miles
Most recent distance127000 miles
Previous carSeat Toledo

Summary:

Best car I've had in 28 years of driving

Faults:

Glow plugs after 2 severe winters, was still able to start with just 1 working (2011).

Rear springs due to heavy load (2010).

Battery, though after 10 years original died (2010).

Front OS bearing (2009).

Rear bearings (2008).

Front discs & pads (2007).

Rear discs (2006).

Front shockers (2005).

General Comments:

Parts can be expensive, there are cheaper alternative parts out there, but you only get what you pay for these days.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 29th March, 2011

1997 BMW 5 Series E39 528 2.8L from Australia and New Zealand

Model year1997
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2010
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2.8L Semi-Automatic
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 0 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 3 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.2 / 10
Distance when acquired190000 kilometres
Most recent distance230000 kilometres
Previous carFord LTD

Summary:

Good looking junk

Faults:

Wow, where do I start?

The computer crapped itself..

The timing chain was gone, injectors not the best, the trans is weak, and the electronics in the car are not very good.

General Comments:

It is a nice car to look at, but that is it. If you can't get a new one, do not buy secondhand, it's a nightmare. There is a reason why they are so cheap, because you need to spend double what you paid for it on the car, and it's very slow take off. On the motorway it's nice, but you'll kill yourself in the city; it's quicker on the push bike LOL.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th March, 2011

19th Mar 2011, 17:59

I've owned 3 BMWs and all have been as bad as yours, terrible quality (loads of design flaws and crappy electrics), I will never buy another German car...

19th Sep 2012, 07:13

I've haven't owned one yet, but I hope to get a 2001/02 530d Sport Tourer within the next year or so, but I have worked on quite a few.

They have their problems here and there, but I've never come across anything as serious as that.

1997 BMW 5 Series 523i SE Touring 2.5 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2008
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 2.5 Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired155000 miles
Most recent distance170000 miles
Previous carPeugeot 405

Summary:

Big, relaxed cruiser, with tricky electrics!

Faults:

Drivers side air spring (at 169K), although this was due to a fault in the self leveling rear suspension pumping car up to max height, then the weakest link in the chain goes. £140 for the new part.

Rusted connection rods on passenger side self leveling sensor, causing false ride height readings.

Rusted lower lip of tailgate (a problem I've seen on a few other 5 series estates of this age)

Rust in sills. Ratchet on handbrake lever broken.

Various sensors telling me there's faults, eg ABS and ASC sensors tell the dash there's a fault every so often.

Car once would not go into 1st 2nd or 3rd gear, after about 10 minutes of playing around with gear lever problem disappeared, never to return (18 months so far!).

General Comments:

Despite a few problems with sensors etc, which are to be expected on a 12 year old car with so many sensors, the car has been absolutely great.

The 2.5 straight six may not be a firecracker, but it is very smooth and refined, gives around 35-40mpg on an easy run, low to mid 20's around town.

Not that quick off the mark, but the car weighs around 1700Kg, is very solid and picks up well over 3000rpm.

Comfortable, spacious, green leather interior with aircon etc, very relaxed motorway cruiser.

I'd love another one, great cars, just watch the rear suspension on touring models though!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th August, 2009

16th Sep 2010, 19:20

I just bought a 523i series BMW here in NZ. Has 144000 on the clock and still going well. I too have the sensor problems, but only in the wet it comes on... when the weather dries up, it goes away. Had a diagnostics test on the sensors, but nothing serious.

The brakes shutter under heavy braking, but that's about it. The mirror electrics have a mind of their own...

All in all a great luxury car... CD stacker also has a mind of its own... Hard to make out the writing on the CD screen...

A great car all the same, and very happy with it.

1997 BMW 5 Series 528i petrol from Lebanon

Model year1997
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2007
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission petrol Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.2 / 10
Previous carHonda Civic

Summary:

The best ride money can buy

Faults:

The only problem I have is the "check rear fog lamp" which constantly turns on, but as soon as I turn on the lights, the warning goes.

Other than that, the best car I ever had, and now I`m going to sell it to buy the 2004 530.

General Comments:

What I like most about this car is the ASC, which really saved me one time.

The sound system is not that bad too. I can`t find another car of the same make or year with so many options inside.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st January, 2009

Average review marks: 7.6 / 10, based on 22 reviews