View Single Post
Old 11-27-2003, 12:25 PM   #4
...Delt Smash
Miguel's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Dudebridge
Posts: 10,879
Originally posted by crazyvadim
Is he looking for a 530 with really low low mileage??E39??I dont know why you said 50grand for a 2003 530i.I seen 2002 M5's go for 55k with about 15k-20k of miles at an auction.Pick up a certified pre-owned 530i with that good warranty from BMW.
We use the Canadian Peso over here
$50K of our "money" is about $38,238.16 USD.

As for the E39... Im guessing it wouldn't get any better in the reliability category than a 2003 E39. It is there last last year of production right? but seriously, your dad may want to check out they have a klot of E39 info there.

These are some problems on older E39's
Ignoring minor problems like door handles breaking off, trim defects, cluster pixels and squeaks, here's the heavy hitters:

1) The upper valve cover gaskets shrink & leak. Spend 10 minutes removing the plastic covers on the heads, so you can see the spark plugs. Use a flashlight to inspect for ANY oil gathered around the spark plugs or laying around. Any oil means you're due for $500 gaskets. This oil will eventually submerge the bottom of the plugs and cause misfire and destroy the $1000 catalytic converters. If the car already has a miss, add new cat's to the order.

2) The cooling system is terrible. It fails like clockwork every 50-80K miles. There is an upgraded radiator available. Most all 540i E39 of that vintage have already experienced failure at least once. For this reason, the car has probably been run low on coolant & your mechanic needs to carefully assess whether this coolant loss resulted in a blown headgasket or warped head or cracked head. If so, the car will show hydrocarbons (gasses) in the coolant system. If you find this problem run far, far away...your talking many thousands to fix the BMW motor with it's 4 cams. I've seen repair bills approach $10K.

The coolant systems typically require a new Nissens radiator, new evaporative canister, new upper rad hose and new water pump. All these components fail. Figure $400 for parts maybe the same for labor.

3) The clutches last about 80K miles. If the car is on it's original clutch, figure dumping $1200 into the car soon. If you can research the car's repair history, you can better assess it's value.

I dont know If they were fixed for 2003 though.
Miguel is offline   Reply With Quote