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X5 E53 (1999 - 2006)
The X5 SAV Forum

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Old 10-26-2013, 07:45 AM
nanette nanette is offline
Location: southern CA
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 127
Mein Auto: 2002 325 ci
Thinking about getting an E53

I already have an E46, but I really want (need) an SUV

Any well-known problems with these babes when I go out looking at them? Anything specific to look for outside of the usual?

Thank you
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Old 10-26-2013, 08:54 AM
puddinboo puddinboo is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: on earth
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 573
Mein Auto: 2003 BMW X5
1. make sure to take the sav (sport activity vehicle) on the highway above 100km to make sure the tranny shifts fine.
2.what I`ve been readding alot on forums about the 8 cylinders needing valve seals replaced because of excessive oil burning out exhaust .(i would go with the 3.0i engine 6cyl. my bmw mechanic said its one of bmws best engines, has alot less problems then the 8cyl).
3.make sure all door locks work properly .
4.check for dead pixels in the dash and mid display.
5.if your not buying it certified it would be worth while taken it to a shop to see what/how much it needs to be certified.
6.make sure all electronics work in vehicle ,heater back and front,sunroof,folding mirrors,heated seats/steerring wheel,radio,cd player,ac,.
7.check for leaks , definetely check the oil if its thick and sludgy you know it hasn`t been changed for a while , listen for noises around the engine, take a good look underneath vehicle for any heavy damage from abuse (off roadding) then you know it was drivving hard.
8.you probally no this but check for heavy rust inside doors, fenders body ect.(bmws are pretty good for there bodies not rusting but there could be some out there).
9.if you can take it out at night you can check if the mirrors dim rear and outside if it has that option. if its rainning you can check the rain sensor also.
10.look at the front of the vehicle and see if there is any tow in or out ,that would be a good sign of front end parts wornout.(to let you know the rear wheels do have some camber to them its the way its made).
11. well I probally forgot something(alot) so someone else might let you know what else to look for.
2003 X5 3.0i
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Old 10-26-2013, 12:41 PM
nanette nanette is offline
Location: southern CA
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 127
Mein Auto: 2002 325 ci

i'm thinking mostly mechanical that might be specific to this vehicle tho ... the e46 wiki has a lot listed for my 325ci, like the window regulator and valve cover gasket issues that are common

anything else that i nee d to double check ...anyone
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Old 10-26-2013, 12:49 PM
white_lancer white_lancer is offline
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: uk
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 206
Mein Auto: E53 X5 2004 3.0 SPORT
I am on my 3rd X5. I have had two 4.4 litre V8's but my current model is the 3.0 litre straight 6. I much prefer the 3.0 litre especially fuel economy wise. I have had to replace the lower front end suspension parts on all 3 models - torsion arms, sway bar links, control arms, bushes, lower ball joints, rotors and pads. This seems to be a common problem around the 80,000 mile mark. Evidence of this lot wearing is a juddering of the steering wheel under breaking. most important to check the auto gearbox is good with smooth changes
E61 2.0D Auto

Last edited by white_lancer; 10-26-2013 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 10-26-2013, 02:25 PM
QSilver7's Avatar
QSilver7 QSilver7 is offline
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Location: Northeast Indiana
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 8,979
Mein Auto: 1997 740iL / 2006 X5 4.4
Here's some model info (2000-2006) and common malady info that may come in handy when in the market for an e53 X5:

Q {BMW CCA Member #191509}
2006 E53 X5 4.4i (Sterling Gray) 12/05 mfg date <<~>> 97 740iL (Arctic Silver) 3/97 mfg date
99 540iT (Orient Blue) <<~>> 95 525IT (Alpine White)
91 735iL (Schwarz Black) <<~>> 85 325e (Bronzit)

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Old 10-26-2013, 03:02 PM
amirich amirich is offline
Registered User
Location: Ontario
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: X5
If you are looking at the N62 engine be careful.
The engine can have various issues, depending on the mileage.
The co$tly repairs that are common with it include valve guide seals and the coolant pipe (under the intake). There is a weep hole beside the water pump on the front timing cover. If there is any evidence of coolant at the hole the repair is quite extensive. (dealer quotes 60 hours). I've heard of a couple manufacturers the have made a collaspable (telescopic) pipe for cheaper repair but still can be co$tly.
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Old 10-27-2013, 08:32 AM
nanette nanette is offline
Location: southern CA
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 127
Mein Auto: 2002 325 ci
Exactly what I was looking for, particularly Qsilver7's post.

All of you, very helpful. Thanks so much!
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Old 10-27-2013, 08:33 AM
nanette nanette is offline
Location: southern CA
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 127
Mein Auto: 2002 325 ci
The 60 hour labor at the dealer is mind boggling though... I'd just buy a new vehicle
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Old 12-03-2013, 02:42 AM
itechbimmerfest itechbimmerfest is offline
Location: Korea
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 49
Mein Auto: E53 M54B30
Don't get it. $$$ $$$ $$$ on maintenance, replacement parts.
A man of great courage is the man who brakes the latest.
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