7-Years ago Today

Discussion in '5 Series' started by Peter, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    For those interested in the past. :)

    BMW 535i Pick Up and Drive Home

    Yes, it is 7-years 'today' that we picked up the 535i from Bowker’s in Preston. It is hard to believe it is 7-years, doesn’t feel like it at all. We’d driven down to Wiltshire the previous Wednesday, visited Bowker on the way, to see the car on the ramp and the top of the engine all apart on the bench. The new camshaft was being fitted due to the corrosion on a cam lobe. There is a whole topic there, which we played out on BMWLand at the time, after Bowker phoned to say there was an issue and we couldn’t pick up the car on the Wednesday, on the way to Wiltshire as was intended.

    Long story short, tech’ had noticed a valvetronic calibration sound on start up. Required a new valvetronic motor. When the engine was opened up, the master tech’ noticed the corrosion spots on the camshaft. BMW got involved and wanted a new camshaft to be fitted. It was while waiting for the camshaft we made the visit, to decide if we wanted to go ahead with the purchase. The issue was minor, most likely caused by standing at BMW distribution, a bit of condensation due to a few cold starts. After a good viewing of the engine and talking with the master technician, I decided to go ahead with the purchase. I got the call while in Wiltshire, that the car was sorted, running fine and ready to pickup on our way back to the Highlands.

    I didn’t test drive the car, was clear to us both this was the right car, subject to the engine work and on-going support by BMW. BMW added a 5-year service package as a gesture of goodwill. (Which has been exceptional added value, due to running through year six). All sorted by Bowker, without any pressure from me.

    The following is the post I made after we got home.

    BMW 535i Touring First Impressions

    Hand over was typical top class BMW service, Bowker are a top dealer no doubt in my mind. Couldn’t have been more helpful, paid by Switch, instant transfer, so painless… car was presented well and tank full, ready to drive off.

    So we drove off, straight to the Motorway and over 300 miles ahead. Fully confident in the car and the guys at Bowker (Preston) assuring us all was 100%. The only warning was watch my speed, as the car drives so free and quiet you can soon be in 3 figures.

    Before we hit the motorway I was at home with it, having had test drives in the F10/11 with the essential bits of the build. Once on the motorway it just settles into its stride, everything spot on, steering, ride, noise levels, all top notch. I leave it in normal drive and just get familiar with it.

    My wife is playing with iDrive, loading CDs to the hard drive, within minutes. For some one computer illiterate she is at home with it in no time, playing with the SatNav, split screen, bringing up the OBC, trying out the DAB radio, etc., etc.

    We were running the SatNav to home just for fun, to see how it works with HUD and speed recognition, etc., very impressive driving aids. I love the HUD with speed recognition keeping you informed of mph and speed zones.

    We stop at Tebay for dinner and reflect. We are both blown away with this car, definitely a mile muncher. I comment on it being a bit big, my wife just reminds me it is all in my mind, with all the parking aids, cameras etc., it will be so easy to park and place.

    We get back on the road and I start playing with the ride settings. Get good sections of road and ‘comfort’ transforms the car into a magic carpet ride, you just waft along so smooth and refined. But when the road deteriorates it loses a bit of composure, still excellent but ‘normal’ gives a better sense of road feel and control. Sport brings the car to a different level, true BMW sport feel, tight and surefooted, but unnecessary on the motorway.

    When the light level dropped the whole dash and interior lighting changed from the daytime black panel clarity with white characters, to the familiar BMW ‘warm red’, this included the HUD as well. I had missed this function from my reading on the F10/11 so was pleasantly surprised; such detail makes this car more a work of art, than a simple car design.

    Once back up to Dalwhinnie and leaving the A9 we head across the mountains and set the car for sport drive. Car comes alive, shrinks around me, true BMW drive qualities, steering, roll control and overall poise is superb. The engine and box superb, driving on the paddles is good, but needs a lot of gear changing on the 8-speed. Ambient temperature dropped to 4-degrees and we hit rain, but pleased to say the RFTs didn’t disgrace (as they did on my 330d) where ride quality used to degrade as the temperature cooled. So we seem to be over that issue with this setup.

    What was noticeable to my wife, as passenger, we were going through the bends far faster than we would have in the 330d, it is so composed and flat in the bends, speed of entry/exit is deceiving. Brakes are massive and powerful, perfectly weighted. Steering even in sport mode is lighter than I am used to, but suits a very relaxed driving style, even when pressing on hard. The whole car only needs light and sensitive inputs, so well balanced and refined.

    We pull into our village car virtually silent, engine running about 1,200rpm as it does at low speeds. Absolutely blown away with everything about this car. OBC was reading 31.7mpg, that includes some decent driving plus all the idling ahead of driving, and road congestion getting out of Preston. If I get over 30mpg average on regular petrol I will be happy.

    Had a chance to drive my local patch yesterday and very impressed with the car, roads will test it out for sure.

    Really do need to get to know all its features. Will address some of them, when I’ve more experience, but features like brake hold just add a bonus, to how easy this car is to drive and control.

    BEST BMW I’ve ever sat in and driven. So pleased we have gone in this direction, I’m sure there won’t be any regrets. My wife already says this car is a keeper.

    Reflections

    Any regrets on the decision? No, none at all. I’d do it again. We’ve had our issues and niggles during ownership. But get in it for a serious drive, (we made a Wiltshire trip back in early summer), what a car to drive 500 miles in a day. Even the local trips, still reward, (although it seems a bit of an overkill, at times), puts a genuine smile on my face each time I drive it.

    Thanks for reading.

    Peter
     
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  2. slim_boy_fat
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    slim_boy_fat WARLORD Site Supporter

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    How time flies, Peter. A lot has happened in the intervening years. :)
     
  3. Spuffington
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    Spuffington Moderator WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Amazing how time flies and I remember reading that post and all the run-up to it like it was yesterday.

    Funny about the seven year thing. Facebook reminds me that this week seven years ago I was starting a new job after four months of enforced unemployment (redundancy) and in just a few months time my daughter will turn seven. This last month has seen me resign from said job and buy a dream house with my new Partner..........when I think about what the intervening seven years have done for me, I can scarcely believe it. Amazing how so much can change yet we feel in some ways like it was yesterday.

    Reading your post makes me really happy for you that the car was the right one. Having had the pleasure of seeing it in the flesh 2.5yrs ago I remember it looking pretty much brand new. Good luck with your continued running of it during the winter. Regardless of niggles, someone will get a cracker.............please keep me in mind still since we will be replacing the VW camper at some point for something more suitable and there is an outside chance that your 535i could still fit the bill.
     
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  4. Verbarthe
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    Verbarthe WARLORD Site Supporter

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    No Automotive Seven Year Itch yet Peter ?:)
     
  5. snrbrtsn
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    snrbrtsn WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Wow! Seven years, that’s amazing!
    Whilst some battle with seven days...... I have troubles with seven months, can only aspire to seven years!
    Long may it serve you!
     
  6. Wynne71
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    Wynne71 Site Supporter

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    Seven years is pretty amazing.
    Sounds as though you bonded with this car very quickly, and the journey seems to have been an agreeable one.
    Good luck for the next seven....years....months...?
     
  7. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Thanks for the replies. (y)

    After having the E91 330d for 6-1/2 years, (a car I never totally bonded with), suppose it is not surprising I'm still in the 535i after 7-years. :)

    To be honest, never intended to keep it this long, but after trying the G30, decided there wasn't enough change to get me into one straight away. Perhaps I should qualify that last statement, not enough change "unless finding the right example with all the key options like the F11 535i", to make a change.

    As has been mentioned by John, a lot has happened over the last 7-years, cars do not have the same importance, one reason I'm not too focused on a 'next car'.

    Peter
     
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  8. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I guess I know why you have a soft spot for the 535i, not many optioned like it in the whole country.:)

    You probably recall when I was looking, there were very few that had all the key options including Adaptive Drive, which along with a panoramic roof, were key options for me. I recall there being one other, but lacked the whole package, plus the price was too high. There was a 535d which I was watching at the same time, was with Dick Lovett in Bristol, was priced at £51,995 when the 535i was being offered for £43,895 from Specialist Cars Luton.

    I'd been following the 535i from March, when it first appeared at Carrs of Bury St Edmunds for £45,995, then onto Specialist Cars Luton for the summer. When the same 535i showed up at Bowker's, listed at £35,000, I knew it was jump, or lose it. The fact it had never left BMW distribution after management use, did surprise me, but did mean no on had been test driving it from the day it went out of use, simply visited BMW's own workshop in July, for a first year check over, as shown on the records.

    Best car buying decision I could have made, got me back to 5-series motoring, a hard act to follow after owning the E39 540i touring, which it has done so well.

    Peter
     
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    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
  9. Mieke
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    Mieke WARLORD Site Supporter

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    @Peter that makes interesting reading. Do I recall correctly that you had a new engine under warranty?

    I have a similar philosophy to owning cars - if I get one that I enjoy driving and is relatively trouble free, then I tend to keep them long term. I've never seen the point in changing every 2 or 3 years just to get the next generation. A car like a BMW is built to last if looked after properly. Currently I'm trying to resist being infected by Porkitus after all the propaganda on the forum (I blame @Spuffington). :D
     
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  10. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Had a new engine in the E39 540i. Developed a 'tack-tack' sound during a trip. Took BMW a while to sort, as their dealer (not my usual garage) tried HVA's and timing chain guides before they finally grasped it was deep in the engine. BMW fitted the new engine, was at ~65k miles.

    I have to agree that having the latest model isn't really necessary, changing cars cost, plus the dealer has their cut each change.

    Recall a business associate in Germany who ran Mercs, he'd use them for 250,000kms before passing onto another member of the family. Couldn't grasp the UK concept of replacing cars every 3 - 4 years, even at low mileage. Couldn't see why we'd fund a premium car, then only use it for a few thousand miles.

    Peter
     
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  11. rigeng
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    rigeng Site Supporter

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    That's another good read!

    I remember your original posts during your process of buying the 535i. It was your enthusiasm for your car that prompted me to get out of my E39 and into a more modern F10, petrol. I settled for a 530i and I've not been disappointed, but maybe next year I'll change it, not sure what though. I sometimes think I'll get a 540i, and other times a X3 with the 3-litre petrol engine. Then there's the new M340i, I wonder what the used prices of those will be next year?:D
     
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  12. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Must admit the brilliance of the I6 petrol engines, a key reason for me staying with BMW.

    Interesting list of possible replacements. Same as my BMW list, my order; 540i, M340i, X3 M40i. My 'wild' car(d) is the new F40 M135i. Not an I6 I know, but something about it in xDrive form, as a small hatch, does appeal. Got a feeling I'll be disappointed after a test drive. I'm sure my wife will persuade me to keep with a 5-series. :sneaky: I'm sure I could live with the B58 engine. :whistle:

    Peter
     
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  13. 535i MSport
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    535i MSport

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    Ahhh. I replaced my 535i with a used C63S T model (estate).

    Loving it, but have already made a few warranty claims for niggles.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     

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