2001 BMW 5 Series 535i M Sport 3.5 V8 from Australia and New Zealand
Best car I've ever owned... Hands down... get one!
Had a heater hose split 150km from Darwin, tow + repair over a gorilla ($1k), the tow was $500 and the repair was $600, both criminal prices... but what can you do in the middle of nowhere?
Water pump seized without notice a few months and 15/20 thousand k's later (in Newcastle this time.. it's done some travelling), that cost me $1800 from a stealer.
Replaced small things like a perishing front badge and broken front cup holders over the next few months.
Noticed reduced top end performance and had an independent specialist diagnose (free) and replace $600 the air flow meter.
No show stoppers, it's got a leaky front engine seal.. common problem I'm told, should have been replaced when the water pump went as it was definitely leaking then, but the crims at the dealer opted not to mention it.. I wonder why? Will cost around $1000, mostly labor.
Not the fastest car I've owned... but that's the only 'best of' box it doesn't tick! It's definitely fast enough for all but boy racer occasions; don't worry, it's a pissing contest winner before you even switch it on.
The 535i M Sport is a beautiful, sporty, comfortable full size sedan that has only recently been matched (on paper) by Australian luxury equivalents.
It feels solid, sounds solid, is solid!
Its revvy 3.5L V8 uses 8.5L/100k on the highway, and about 12L/100k with mixed city/80k+ daily driving.
The particular car I purchased has been looked after its whole life, garaged, with full history to back it up... that's the difference between my car, and someone with a BMW who reckons its the most unreliable car on the face of the earth. If you get them serviced properly.. I mean all the filters, all the fluids and all the checks done properly and on time, these cars will remain brilliant for many years!
If not, they turn into the 328i I had with a 50k gap in its service history... unsatisfying money pit.
They are available for next to nothing these days, take service history over k's every day of the week and let the overall appearance of the car speak for itself if you get one.. little annoying things that you overlook at purchase WILL be expensive to fix, so shop around.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 26th December, 2010