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F10 / F11 (2011 - Current)
The new chapter in the highly successful story of the BMW 5 Series Sedan (F10) and wagon (F11)

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  #51  
Old 10-01-2011, 03:03 PM
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1985mb 1985mb is offline
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Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
Do you want a driver's car or a whiz-bang computer? My BMW nav shows real-time traffic conditions that is sufficient for my needs. I care more about how the car drives and handles than how good the Nav system is. I've said this before, a car is for driving. It's like my Nikon DSLR's. All these new gen people want an SLR to do every function under the sun. I want it to capture the images I need. I don't want it to do video, I don't want an electronic viewfinder -- I want a solid, well performing camera. I think in general we look for too much auxiliary function in our cars as well. I know it's not as cut and dried as this, many factors go into deciding what car to buy. If you want the slickest, highest technology possible, then maybe BMW is not the car for you. If you want an exceedingly well engineered, well balanced, driver oriented vehicle, BMW is definitely one to consider.
Funny you should say this as BMW's list of whiz bang gadgetry grows ever longer. Adaptive this, active that, hdd, HUD, backup cameras, 360 cameras, front PDC, rear PDC, combox, BMW apps...the list goes on and on. Is BMW going to continue making cars for people like you and me, or is it going down the road towards becoming the ultimate parking machine? Will it become the car of choice for the next gen that plays with apps while active cruise, lane dep control and later some form of steering control basically drives the car?

It's sad that BMW invests so much into tech while customers like the above feel that it comes up short in executing existing technologies (or creating new ones like in-car wifi hotspot by Audi).
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  #52  
Old 10-02-2011, 05:27 AM
535Stu 535Stu is offline
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Originally Posted by 1985mb View Post
Funny you should say this as BMW's list of whiz bang gadgetry grows ever longer. Adaptive this, active that, hdd, HUD, backup cameras, 360 cameras, front PDC, rear PDC, combox, BMW apps...the list goes on and on. Is BMW going to continue making cars for people like you and me, or is it going down the road towards becoming the ultimate parking machine? Will it become the car of choice for the next gen that plays with apps while active cruise, lane dep control and later some form of steering control basically drives the car?

It's sad that BMW invests so much into tech while customers like the above feel that it comes up short in executing existing technologies (or creating new ones like in-car wifi hotspot by Audi).
I agree, and what happens is that all of that "stuff" is subject to break. The more junk you put on a car, the more that can go wrong. My dealer was pretty honest with me, when I was ordering the car they suggested I keep it as basic as possible for that reason. The only miss was telling me not to order the 19 inch tires.

I watched that MSNBC special a few months ago. Seems BMW spends plenty of time getting the seat belt chime right. That is great, but they also need to spend time on other more important functions.
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  #53  
Old 10-02-2011, 05:33 AM
535Stu 535Stu is offline
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Originally Posted by TJPark01 View Post
My friend who owns an E60 BMW and I were talking about Japanese cars versus German. While we both agreed the Japanese cars were a bit cookie cutter. He said something that I though summed it up pretty well.
"In the real world, functional and boring will always trump cool and broken."
Your friend could not have said it best. Now, if you know of a car that can give you everything in one package...please let me know.
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  #54  
Old 10-02-2011, 07:20 AM
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markl53 markl53 is offline
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Originally Posted by 535Stu View Post
Your friend could not have said it best. Now, if you know of a car that can give you everything in one package...please let me know.
I think Japanese cars are still resting on their laurels, so to speak. I've owned 3 BMWs since the end of 2004 -- '05 330i, '08 335i and now '11 535i. The only problem I experienced with any of them was the 335i fuel pump issue with my '08 335i. Other than that, they've all only visited the dealership for normal maintenance, and interim oil changes. And before the BMW's, I owned an '02 C-Class and a '99 VW Passat. Neither of them had any serious service problems either, though the MB had a few more odd things go wrong than my BMW's, broken steering wheel lock motor (while out of town ) and driver heated seat problem.

In about that same time frame, we've owned 3 Acura TL's. Pretty much similar experiences, but I see the same issues true of all cars. On our '03 TL, the wiper fuse continued to blow when you turned the steering wheel and they couldn't find the problem. I finally realized it happened when you tilted the steering wheel down, obviously a wiring issue. I had to fight with Acura HQ to demand a fix. The '05 TL had a problem with the passenger side view mirror. They use a weak motor in it and the mirror wouldn't move into position between memory settings. Now our '08 TL is exhibiting the same problem. They know these things break but don't take steps in successive model years to fix it.

One thing though, I'll never keep a car past the warranty period. No matter the car, after-warranty repairs are extremely costly. The president of my company drove an '05 Lexus LS, now has a new one. He tells a story of how he was waiting in the service area for his car and heard some loud yelling. Apparently another customer was just told he needed to spend $7000 getting the transmission fixed on his LS. It's pretty much the same across all brands I'm afraid.

The only conclusion I've come to, after owning cars since 1970, is that foreign cars, be they Japanese or German, are more reliable than my previous American cars (mostly GM), which had a propensity to visit dealer service departments. All in all, I've found my German cars to be as reliable as any Japanese car I've owned.
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Last edited by markl53; 10-02-2011 at 07:23 AM.
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  #55  
Old 10-02-2011, 08:19 AM
535Stu 535Stu is offline
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Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
I think Japanese cars are still resting on their laurels, so to speak. I've owned 3 BMWs since the end of 2004 -- '05 330i, '08 335i and now '11 535i. The only problem I experienced with any of them was the 335i fuel pump issue with my '08 335i. Other than that, they've all only visited the dealership for normal maintenance, and interim oil changes. And before the BMW's, I owned an '02 C-Class and a '99 VW Passat. Neither of them had any serious service problems either, though the MB had a few more odd things go wrong than my BMW's, broken steering wheel lock motor (while out of town ) and driver heated seat problem.

In about that same time frame, we've owned 3 Acura TL's. Pretty much similar experiences, but I see the same issues true of all cars. On our '03 TL, the wiper fuse continued to blow when you turned the steering wheel and they couldn't find the problem. I finally realized it happened when you tilted the steering wheel down, obviously a wiring issue. I had to fight with Acura HQ to demand a fix. The '05 TL had a problem with the passenger side view mirror. They use a weak motor in it and the mirror wouldn't move into position between memory settings. Now our '08 TL is exhibiting the same problem. They know these things break but don't take steps in successive model years to fix it.

One thing though, I'll never keep a car past the warranty period. No matter the car, after-warranty repairs are extremely costly. The president of my company drove an '05 Lexus LS, now has a new one. He tells a story of how he was waiting in the service area for his car and heard some loud yelling. Apparently another customer was just told he needed to spend $7000 getting the transmission fixed on his LS. It's pretty much the same across all brands I'm afraid.

The only conclusion I've come to, after owning cars since 1970, is that foreign cars, be they Japanese or German, are more reliable than my previous American cars (mostly GM), which had a propensity to visit dealer service departments. All in all, I've found my German cars to be as reliable as any Japanese car I've owned.
No doubt, any car is going to have its problems. I stepped away from Acura once and bought a 2007 Lexus ES350. The high pressure oil hose broke (later a recall on the 3.5L engine was issued) and the car crapped out on me and oil was everywhere under the hood. What a mess. After the repair, back to Acura I went.

I, too, get rid of the cars just under 50K miles and won't own them without a warranty. The dealer actually told me that they are able to give better trade values if the car is still under factory warranty. Helps them with the certification process as well.
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  #56  
Old 10-02-2011, 12:07 PM
soulunderdog soulunderdog is offline
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Interesting comments from Mark. I've had numerous vehicles too since about 1975 as a kid. The past 19 years I've been driving company cars mostly American. This may be hard to believe but I've had precious few problems with any of them. We usually drive them for 2-3 years or about 65K miles. I put close to 70K on a Toyota Camry with no issues at all. My current Taurus has 8K miles so far with no issues. My 535i appears to have the dreaded pull to the right. It is ever so slight and difficult to determine if it's a true issue or not. The steering wheel is not complete center and if I let go it will slowly drift to the right. Doesn't disrupt my driving pleasure at all and I'm not sure if I'll do anything about it..
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  #57  
Old 10-02-2011, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by soulunderdog View Post
Interesting comments from Mark. I've had numerous vehicles too since about 1975 as a kid. The past 19 years I've been driving company cars mostly American. This may be hard to believe but I've had precious few problems with any of them. We usually drive them for 2-3 years or about 65K miles. I put close to 70K on a Toyota Camry with no issues at all. My current Taurus has 8K miles so far with no issues. My 535i appears to have the dreaded pull to the right. It is ever so slight and difficult to determine if it's a true issue or not. The steering wheel is not complete center and if I let go it will slowly drift to the right. Doesn't disrupt my driving pleasure at all and I'm not sure if I'll do anything about it..
To be honest, I've had nothing but good experiences with American cars (Ford, Chevy, numerous ones from the 80's to 90's to '09 models). American cars that have come and gone through my family have also fared well.

If I need something to be a work-horse, and give me trouble-free, "beater" mileage, I usually will choose an American car.

I think it's their simplicity. Even newer Japanese cars are getting more complex, and you're starting to hear of more problems reported with even general Toyota's (than from before at least), etc.
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  #58  
Old 10-02-2011, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
All in all, I've found my German cars to be as reliable as any Japanese car I've owned.
While in general I agree with this statement, it's available to multiple interpretations. If reliability is measured by, does the car start, stop and go, then by all means the aforementioned is true. If reliability means, less maintenance, then it probably does not. It really depends how you're looking at it.
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  #59  
Old 10-02-2011, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by TJPark01 View Post
While in general I agree with this statement, it's available to multiple interpretations. If reliability is measured by, does the car start, stop and go, then by all means the aforementioned is true. If reliability means, less maintenance, then it probably does not. It really depends how you're looking at it.
I don't think regular maintenance "counts" as far as reliability. How many Japanese cars require(d) timing chain replacements? Are you going to count that against them? Actually, now that I think about it, yes I would. In fact, I would not buy a car whose engine requires a timing belt change. But no, in general, I don't count scheduled maintenance as a factor of reliability. Reliability to me means the car runs properly and does need to go into the shop to be "fixed". Are you saying German cars require more maintenance?
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Prior: 2011 535i AT | Black Sapphire/Cinnamon | Premium | Heated Sts | Nav | Sirius | Anthracite Hdr & Trim
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Last edited by markl53; 10-02-2011 at 02:29 PM.
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  #60  
Old 10-02-2011, 02:47 PM
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Originally Posted by markl53 View Post
I don't think regular maintenance "counts" as far as reliability. How many Japanese cars require(d) timing chain replacements? Are you going to count that against them? Actually, now that I think about it, yes I would. In fact, I would not buy a car whose engine requires a timing belt change. But no, in general, I don't count scheduled maintenance as a factor of reliability. Reliability to me means the car runs properly and does need to go into the shop to be "fixed". Are you saying German cars require more maintenance?
I'm saying that reliability is a vague term and hard to qualify. It's ultimate measuring stick really depends of which angle you're looking from. For someone to say, Japanese are more reliable than German cars is a very vague statement and up to wide interpretation.
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  #61  
Old 10-02-2011, 05:44 PM
soulunderdog soulunderdog is offline
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Originally Posted by TJPark01 View Post
I'm saying that reliability is a vague term and hard to qualify. It's ultimate measuring stick really depends of which angle you're looking from. For someone to say, Japanese are more reliable than German cars is a very vague statement and up to wide interpretation.
I wouldn't say any brand is more reliable than another - I think it depends upon the actual vehicle. However, reliability is very easily defined - especially when you own a vehicle for 3 years and all you do is routine maintenance, that's reliable. Or when you own a car for 6 years (our 2006 GS 300) and all you've done is routine maintenance. However, if you're taking a car in for numerous issues ( even under warranty) where you know everyone by first name ( and their families) that's not a reliable vehicle.
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  #62  
Old 10-02-2011, 09:31 PM
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Acura were on a roll back in the day. The Integra was really hot with the youngins, and the last gen TL was a very nice and good car.
One of things that I think got them was dropping the unique names they had. The Legend at one time was a pretty bad-ass car, with a name befitting of it. In an effort to do what everyone else was doing, they went to a boring nomenclature. A big part of the Acura soul left at that point.
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  #63  
Old 10-03-2011, 12:34 AM
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Yeah, I remember being a young kid who'd always read my Moms "Architectural Digest" only for all the fancy Luxury Car ads, and I was in love with the Legend (and NSX). Ahh, those were the days.... Before every Luxo automaker tried to pander to the mid-life crisis/cougar/boy-racer/whatever in everyone. They just wanted to look serious, rich, and prestigious.
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