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I'm considering a used BMW...am I nuts?

Time2ShineTime2Shine 215 replies12 threads Junior Member
I stumbled across a private seller with a 2013 BMW 328i xDrive in excellent condition. It's his second car. He bought it CPO and has only put 11,000 miles on it in 2 years(it has about 39,000 miles on it in total).

I need a new vehicle and I'd like to spend less than $20,000, which this vehicle is.

I've been driving Hondas since 1994. I drive my vehicles until they die. I'd want to get at least 80,000 more miles on this car which would equate to roughly 7 years. That would give me at least 3 years without payments.

The upside is that the car gets 34+ miles per gallon on the highway.

The downside could be the overall cost of maintenance.

Am I nuts? Should I just buy a used Honda, or Toyota, or Subaru?
69 replies
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Replies to: I'm considering a used BMW...am I nuts?

  • HImomHImom 35875 replies396 threads Senior Member
    If you have the funds to maintain it and would enjoy it, why not?
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 82871 replies738 threads Senior Member
    You can get a new Honda Fit or Honda Civic for under $20,000, get 36-40mpg (EPA rating) highway on regular (not premium like the BMW) gasoline, and not have expensive BMW maintenance and repairs.
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  • jym626jym626 57429 replies3010 threads Senior Member
    Have you checked the reliability history on that year/model? Yes, the cost of maintenance will be key, and how much its likely to need is worth looking into. That said, if you love it and can afford the maintenance, enjoy!
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  • thumper1thumper1 78071 replies3504 threads Senior Member
    If you have always wanted a BMW, and then go for it. Take it to your mechanic for a check before you buy it.

    They are fun cars to drive...and sorry @ucbalumnus they just aren’t anything like a Honda Fit or Civic.
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  • coralbrookcoralbrook 8019 replies25 threads Senior Member
    edited February 2018
    BMW. Bought a used one for D and the maintenance is not bad. Find an independent BMW mechanic, take it to the regular oil change place and regular tire places. The only issues we have had is when she had a flat it triggered a flat tire sensor. Well, guess what? Only a BMW dealer can turn the dang thing off when they put on their new tire. Forget it, bought a new tire and we live with the warning on the dash

    It is a dream to drive. Nothing compares
    edited February 2018
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  • Time2ShineTime2Shine 215 replies12 threads Junior Member
    @thumper1 It's not that I always wanted a BMW, I've just always wanted something sportier than a Honda... ;-)
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  • busyparentbusyparent 1024 replies44 threads Senior Member
    We have had multiple BMWs and the latest 2010 335D has been a lemon. The mechanic thinks the newer BMWs are not made as well. I know a guy who just bought a used Volvo s90 (?) and loves it
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  • thumper1thumper1 78071 replies3504 threads Senior Member
    My husband says...it’s a good car. The maintenance will be high and you will likely get 100,000 miles or so on the car.

    So...how far are you driving everyday?

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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 82871 replies738 threads Senior Member
    Time2Shine wrote:
    It's not that I always wanted a BMW, I've just always wanted something sportier than a Honda...

    A Mazda 3 or Ford Focus may be a less expensive way to get a sportier drive.
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  • HImomHImom 35875 replies396 threads Senior Member
    We had a used BMW that we were gifted. Once we found a GOOD Independent maintenance wasn’t that bad. We shipped it to S and it eventually died after being rear-ended a few times. It was about 15 years old and 150k miles.
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  • sherpasherpa 4898 replies97 threads Senior Member
    When my daughter was about to graduate college in 2013 my father in law offered her one of his cars as a graduation present. I was elected to fly to California to pick it up and drive it to our home, and from there DW and I drove it to NC for her Duke graduation.

    Before I arrived to pick it up all I knew was it was a 2006 BMW. Seven year old, free car, sounded good to me. It turned out to be in immaculate condition and had less than 7,000 miles on the odometer. It's almost as if the only times they'd driven it had been to take it to the dealer for regular oil changes.

    When we drove it to NC our overall average speed, including all pit stops and in town driving was over 80 MPH, which was the car's fault, certainly not mine.

    DD loved it, but after a couple years of driving it in Boston (bad weather, many potholes) she a decided to trade it in for a Subaru. I made her an offer she couldn't refuse so I drive it now. A gem like that must be kept in the family. I probably overpaid, but, hey, it's my daughter.

    It's up to around 40,000 miles now, which is still absurd for a 2006, and as of yet there haven't been any maintenance issues

    I'm basically a Honda/Acura guy but, in this case, I'd advise you buy it, especially if AWD is beneficial to you.

    Especially if you like a car that responds when you tell it to go.
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  • Time2ShineTime2Shine 215 replies12 threads Junior Member
    @thumper1 The office is 13 miles from home, no highway, all suburban backroads. I drive a lot of highway miles for club soccer games with my son. For the last 2 years I've broken from Honda and have been driving a Toyota FJ Cruiser that gets about 18 mpg and needs 93 octane gas. That will go to school with my son in the Fall.
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  • surfcitysurfcity 2713 replies61 threads Senior Member
    Clearly @ucbalumnus is not a car person ;)
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  • vhsdadvhsdad 235 replies0 threads Junior Member
    As somebody noted, find a reputable independent mechanic--dealership are insanely expensive. Also, just know that when a BMW starts to go downhill, the repair bill can really stack up.
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  • jasmomjasmom 1135 replies37 threads Senior Member
    edited February 2018
    My husband, a car guy, says " There's nothing cheaper to drive than a Honda; there's nothing more fun to drive than BMW, except a Porsche. If you want to have fun in a Honda, you have to get a Civic-R, best of both worlds(?)."
    An edit. "If the BMW is a 4 cylinder, don't count on getting 120,000 miles."
    edited February 2018
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  • sushirittosushiritto 5230 replies20 threads Senior Member
    As a long term BMW owner, a good Indy will be expensive (and busy) too. But just below dealer pricing. Parts are parts. If they’re from BMW, then get ready to spend big bucks. As an example, I had to replace a catalytic converter once, low miles in CA (not rusty area) and the new converter was $2,000 without labor.

    They’re wonderful cars to drive, extremely sporty, when they’re not in the shop. But I just wouldn’t buy a newer BMW, unless you will only keep it short term. If you keep cars a long time like I do, then I just wouldn’t buy the BMW, unless: a) you have lots of money and b) the shop will rent or comp a rental for you or you have another car in the driveway.

    BTW, the x-drive has a terrible reputation for reliability according to Consumer Reports. Buy a Lexus!
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  • anomanderanomander 1862 replies4 threads Senior Member
    I’ve owned a couple BMWs past the 10 yr / 100k mark. They’re not particularly expensive until around the 6-8 year, 60-80k range. Around that point maintenance items and wear starts to kick in. If you figure about $500-$1000 per year on average from 60k to 100k, you’ll be in the ballpark. From 100k - 120k figure closer to 1k - 1.5k per year in maintenance. You’ll definitely want to find a good independent BMW mechanic, and if you DIY there are BMW enthusiast forums out there to help out.

    They’re awesome cars IMHO well worth the maintenance cost relative to the value of the car. That is, when I sold my 12 year old, 120k miles, 330i for 5k, it was an amazing car relative to what you could get for 5k or even 15k.

    Anyway all that said, I think you should take a look at dealer CPO 2015 320i’s (yeah incorrect use of apostrophe there, but 320is just looks weird). I’ve seen those listed on dealer sites for around 20k or less and you get the balance of the factory 4/50 warranty plus another year of unlimited mileage CPO warranty. The 320i is a nice car, just a bit slower than the 328i. Also unless you live in the snow belt, RWD is a much better choice than AWD.

    Finally, be aware that the AWD version of the 3-series has a taller (softer) suspension than the RWD models. The optional adjustable shocks help, but otherwise the stock AWD models have a reputation for being a bit soft and bouncy.
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  • lamomlamom 1352 replies42 threads Senior Member
    H loves BMWs. I never wanted one till I fell for my 135i convertible, which I exchanged for a Mazda Miata RF when BMW repairs /maintenance would be 1/2 the car was worth. I drove son’s Honda Fit, it’s ok but not fun and my bottom hurts after 2 hrs. BMWs are fun and sturdy.
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