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Re: Will an E34 525i be a financial nightmare for (archive)

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Posted by george covell on August 29, 2001 at 10:01:26:

In Reply to: Will an E34 525i be a financial nightmare for me?? posted by G on August 29, 2001 at 09:36:18:

Hi G.
It is really strange because i have had a similar conversation with my 26 year old son who is currently driving a 1983 528e- my old car. he has been inundated with all the nickle/dime issues you suggest. the car has over 300k on it with the motor and gear box done at 175k. the car still runs strong, but is really showing its age. I drive a 1995 525I which I bough used with 78k on it. I have found this car is less maintainence intensive than my 528. i have been driving it for 2 years now and my repair costs have been less than I expected. My feeling is that the 1995+ 5 series cars are excellent cars. The secret is to buy one that has been well maintained and has well documented maintainence. The larger displacement engines 535, 540, ect, pose higher costs if work need to be done. Owning and driving a BMW is kinda of a state of mind. They are wonderful cars, but do require care on a regular basis is their wonderfulness is to be maintained. i have never been a fan of leasing unless you drive bunches of tax deductible miles. Remember personal interest expense is no longer tax deductible but business miles are. you might think about looking around at friends, business associates, ect who have BMW coming off lease and are going to be turned in. Maybe you can work a deal for a newer car at less money to help you get into a newer car with less initial cost. Whatever you do, do what I suggest to my clients- do a cash flow analysis and see if you can really afford a particular cart at thisd point in your life.
good luck'
george covell
Hi everyone,

To give you some background, I'm a 27 year-old guy about to get married next month, and I just bought a home. I have had two BMWs, a '92 325i which I owned for six years and 150,000 miles, and a 2000 323i, which I leased for six months and had to sell due to the home purchase (the $600 a month for the car just wasn't going to impress my home lender at approval time).

Anyway, I've been driving my mom's 2000 Turbo Beetle for the last few months, and it's a neat little car, but I'm basically suffering from BMW withdrawal on an hourly basis now (no exaggeration).

My fear though, stems from the amount of times my E36 had to go back to the dealer for minor repairs (average of 3-4 times per month). I say "minor", but they generally weren't things I could repair myself- most of the time it was broken interior trim pieces, warped rotors, alternator/ electrical part replacement, etc,- things which were taken to the dealer because the car was under warranty for 4 years, and things I probably wouldn't tackle myself out-of-warranty.

I don't really know of a good independent BMW mechanic around here in rural Southeastern PA, and everything I do repair-wise is through my dealer. I'm looking to buy an early 1990's 525i wth the M50 engine (between 50 and 75K miles on the clock), but I just wonder if I'm making a mistake. I don't want astronomical repair bills every month, but unfortunately I have this very strong desire to get back into a BMW, and nothing else I drive comes close. Am I crazy? Is there another BMW which would serve me better?

Thanks for your time and any info!

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