Most Unreliable Car - BMW 3 series Convertible

by Bimmerfest.com Member - Loganradio on August 10, 2012, 9:16 am
BMW E93 3 series convertible most unreliable car

German car makers pride themselves on producing high-quality, safe and, most of all, reliable vehicles. But the results of a new consumer watchdog report may have them thinking otherwise.

The BMW 3 Series Convertible has been judged the worst car on the market for breakdowns after spending nearly 3.5 days a year in the garage for repairs.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...e-repairs.html


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39 responses to Most Unreliable Car - BMW 3 series Convertible

Boghopper commented:
August 10, 2012, 11:27 am

That's why mine's a lease. 3 years and walk away (probably to a new convertible).
gekisai29 commented:
August 10, 2012, 12:22 pm

link in link has survey showing top 10 verts for retaining value. 1 series in gruop but a5 was #1
SD Z4MR commented:
August 10, 2012, 2:56 pm

What does this have to do with European Delivery and why is it posted here?

ETA: moved to the correct forum
unrealii commented:
August 10, 2012, 5:59 pm

So far I've had 6.5k trouble free miles since picking mine up used
captainaudio commented:
August 10, 2012, 6:43 pm

"The popular upmarket soft-top spends almost a day longer off the road every year due to faults than any other car, according to the latest research by Which?"

Sounds like a pretty reliable source to me.

CA
80MGB commented:
August 10, 2012, 7:44 pm

I don't believe it - had my 335i eight days now, and not a single glitch!
captainaudio commented:
August 10, 2012, 7:48 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by 80MGB View Post
I don't believe it - had my 335i eight days now, and not a single glitch!
Wait till next year and you'll be singing a differnent tune.
The 3.5 days a year the car is off the road are in May. So plan accordingly.

CA
roadkillrob commented:
August 10, 2012, 8:07 pm

Mine has probably been in the shop 3 days in just short of 5 years now - doing much better than 2 lexus models I have previously owned for reliability. My X5 has been in for 2 oil changes in 2 years so far and nothing else!
80MGB commented:
August 10, 2012, 8:13 pm

3.49 rainy days I hope!

One needs to take such a survey from the Daily Mail with a bit of skepticism, in between all the articles about Obama's brother, Britney Spears and other such serious topics. It has been observed here in the U.S. that when a car is outside of its native environment it can become manifest certain problems, much like an Eskimo breaking into a sweat on a visit to Miami. Take, if you will, the British MGB (an '80, even). When it is hot here in the US, the car tends to overheat. This is because its native environment, the UK, is much cooler and rainier. London, in the south of the UK, is 51 degrees north, and down here at 33 degrees, there's no comparison. My theory is that the 335i, while built in Bavaria, is really targeted to a climate such as the US, where we have warmer and sunnier days (and presumably the biggest export market for the E93). The 3-series convertible BMWs that are consigned to Albion suffer from the fog, rain, and clouds, just as it causes a chill in the bones of some of its residents. This is a scientific and primary reason why I have not yet taken my MGB out of the garage and invested in a restoration. That's my story & I'm sticking to it!
SteVTEC commented:
August 10, 2012, 8:58 pm

My previous Toyota RAV4 V6 probably spent two weeks out of service in the past year due to nearly constant recall notices and other BS. In fact we just got another one in the mail for a rear suspension issue on that POS. So it'll be going back into the shop once again, except my parents own it now so they can take it.
laser commented:
August 10, 2012, 9:01 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by 80MGB View Post
3.49 rainy days I hope!

One needs to take such a survey from the Daily Mail with a bit of skepticism, in between all the articles about Obama's brother, Britney Spears and other such serious topics. It has been observed here in the U.S. that when a car is outside of its native environment it can become manifest certain problems, much like an Eskimo breaking into a sweat on a visit to Miami. Take, if you will, the British MGB (an '80, even). When it is hot here in the US, the car tends to overheat. This is because its native environment, the UK, is much cooler and rainier. London, in the south of the UK, is 51 degrees north, and down here at 33 degrees, there's no comparison. My theory is that the 335i, while built in Bavaria, is really targeted to a climate such as the US, where we have warmer and sunnier days (and presumably the biggest export market for the E93). The 3-series convertible BMWs that are consigned to Albion suffer from the fog, rain, and clouds, just as it causes a chill in the bones of some of its residents. This is a scientific and primary reason why I have not yet taken my MGB out of the garage and invested in a restoration. That's my story & I'm sticking to it!
You put some effort into that
Capobranco commented:
August 10, 2012, 9:12 pm

Not my experience. I owned a 335ic MT for about 1.5 years and drove it 35K miles. During that time, the car was bullet proof.
need4speed commented:
August 10, 2012, 9:23 pm

I'm not sure the vert is that much worse in terms of reliability vis a vie other 3 series. You can't miss wide spread issues (if they exist) here on the fest. I don't recall any except the vibration/noise thing in the early models. Time will tell. N4S
fun2drive commented:
August 10, 2012, 9:40 pm

This survey does not agree with my 5 1/2 years of ownership.
I have had no downtime except for scheduled service and I don't think I am atypical.
CALWATERBOY commented:
August 10, 2012, 9:43 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loganradio View Post
The BMW 3 Series Convertible has been judged the worst car on the market for breakdowns after spending nearly 3.5 days a year in the garage for repairs.
Can't say I agree.

My down time other than HPFP, which I don't consider a long term reliability issue, has been limited to oil changes, relay replacement for the top [$10 parts] and frayed cord replacement for the top [couldn't have been more than $10 parts; no-brain procedure].

And an alignment.
tturedraider commented:
August 10, 2012, 10:09 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loganradio View Post
"German car makers pride themselves on producing high-quality, safe and, most of all, reliable vehicles."
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...e-repairs.html
Since when?! That first sentence pretty much completely undermines any claim to knowledge of German cars the writer may claim.
beden1 commented:
August 11, 2012, 12:48 am

When did the hard top vert come out? Was it 2008? If so, not much time out of warranty to make a claim like that!

"Which? said: 'These cars are likely to be outside the warranty period - making repairs a potentially much greater expense."

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...#ixzz23D56WgQk
anE934fun commented:
August 11, 2012, 1:09 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post
Can't say I agree.

My down time other than HPFP, which I don't consider a long term reliability issue, has been limited to oil changes, relay replacement for the top [$10 parts] and frayed cord replacement for the top [couldn't have been more than $10 parts; no-brain procedure].

And an alignment.
And certainly not an issue specific to the E93....
andrew b commented:
August 11, 2012, 3:08 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by beden1 View Post
When did the hard top vert come out? Was it 2008? If so, not much time out of warranty to make a claim like that!
hardtops were intorduced in 2007.
Nordic_Kat commented:
August 11, 2012, 8:41 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by 80MGB View Post
One needs to take such a survey from the Daily Mail with a bit of skepticism. . . .
LOL. That's exactly what I thought when I saw the source.

My 3 year old E93 has had two minor top-related warranty issues and other than that only routine maintenance.

In contrast, the "bullet proof" Honda I had that had a chronic A/C leak (not good in a place like Houston) which after going on for about 5 years finally required a total tear down of the cooling system to diagnose and fix. Of course, in fairness to the car, some of that issue may have been due to ineptitude of the indy who was working on it and is no longer in business.
Verts4Ever commented:
August 11, 2012, 10:36 am

"The 2012 Which? Car Survey, which questioned nearly 40,000 drivers about more than 47,000 cars they owned, reveals the cars aged four to eight years old that spend most time off the road."

Stupid name for a survey. That aside, the article doesn't indicate that the reliability issue is related to the hard top mechanism.

Here's the link to the survey page. There's no way to see the methodology or results without paying, but I'm wondering if sample group included a relatively large number of E93 N54 owners and, as such, whether the poor reliability report isn't mainly due to the now-solved HPFP problem.
marzer commented:
August 11, 2012, 11:15 am

This is B*LLSH!T! I've had my E93 335i for over 5 years and 48k miles. The HPFP recall and a transmission gasket is all the trouble I've experienced with my car. It's been a VERY reliable car and still performs like new, not so much as a rattle or a squeak. And as noted in previous posts, its no stranger to "spirited" handling.

Compare that to a MB SUV I had years ago, 23 repairs in 5 years!
Kilgore Trout commented:
August 11, 2012, 12:01 pm

Guys,

I basically make my living as a survey researcher. Survey data paid for my BMW. I really have a strong motivation to believe that data. For this reason, you will always see me on this forum defending well done surveys ( like CR). I only believe the criticisms from those type of sources 100%. But, in this case, the article is based on a survey from an unidentified source and we know zero about this methodology. If you buy anything about this, I would like to discuss a business venture with you involving a wealthy patron from Nigeria.

Skeptical Kilgore
pony_trekker commented:
August 11, 2012, 1:27 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loganradio View Post
The BMW 3 Series Convertible has been judged the worst car on the market for breakdowns after spending nearly 3.5 days a year in the garage for repairs.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...e-repairs.html
They can't even say ga-RAJ right.
Jason @ BMS commented:
August 11, 2012, 4:49 pm

Yeah, well who cares about tightening a couple bolts up here and there.
Loganradio commented:
August 12, 2012, 10:56 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by SD Z4MR View Post
What does this have to do with European Delivery and why is it posted here?

ETA: moved to the correct forum
I didn't know where to put it. #3 on the list is the 5 Series wagon, F11? Just thought it was of general interest. Perhaps there's a general category?
Thunder Dump commented:
August 13, 2012, 7:22 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilgore Trout View Post
Guys,

I basically make my living as a survey researcher. Survey data paid for my BMW. I really have a strong motivation to believe that data. For this reason, you will always see me on this forum defending well done surveys ( like CR). I only believe the criticisms from those type of sources 100%. But, in this case, the article is based on a survey from an unidentified source and we know zero about this methodology. If you buy anything about this, I would like to discuss a business venture with you involving a wealthy patron from Nigeria.

Skeptical Kilgore
Although the surveys themselves may be well done, from a statistical standpoint they don't meet the criteria for random sample, therefore the data contained therein must be looked at accordingly.
haskindm commented:
August 13, 2012, 10:35 am

My E93 spends every night in the garage... :-) See, you can make a survey say anything that you want it to!
However after one year of ownership and almost 30,000 miles of driving it has required zero repairs....
BigApple commented:
August 13, 2012, 10:50 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by haskindm View Post
My E93 spends every night in the garage... :-) See, you can make a survey say anything that you want it to!
However after one year of ownership and almost 30,000 miles of driving it has required zero repairs....
I second that
Had my e93 2011 335i convertable for over 1 year and not even one issue. ( ops yeah one issue) had to add a QT of oil
Kilgore Trout commented:
August 13, 2012, 11:09 am

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thunder Dump View Post
Although the surveys themselves may be well done, from a statistical standpoint they don't meet the criteria for random sample, therefore the data contained therein must be looked at accordingly.
That has always been a fair criticism when it comes to CR. however, the attributes of their sample tend to mirror the typical buyer of the 3 series: educated and relatively affluent.
kashrahman commented:
August 14, 2012, 11:45 am

so this is probably the wrong time to mention that my baby had 2 service visits last month. First was top was stuck almost closed --- something was overheating and as a failsafe the top stopped moving. it looked closed but the entire drive to the dealership she kept warning me "top not closed properly!! warning!!" luckily she stayed in one piece. I'll double check to see what they replaced.

then 2 weeks later she intermittently wouldn't function. they found a loose connection in the actual switch (between the drivers seat) and fixed that, which makes me wonder about my theory of usage. I expect by the end of this summer to have used the top mechanism about 2000 times (at least 500/year). She was perfectly fine the first two years, but last year went in 4 times, twice this year.

Thankfully, all this is merely annoying at worst. Almost each time my dealer will pick her up and leave and loaner, and everything has been covered under warranty. Still not sure how I'll feel once the extended warranty runs out . . .
shawncbmw commented:
August 14, 2012, 1:44 pm

So, I'm just curious as to what types of problems kept the 3 Series Convertible in the shop for an average of 3.5 days a year. If it's related to the convertible top not functioning properly, seems the simple solution would be just to keep it down. ;-) I can't imagine it's anything related to the powertrain or drivetrain. I'm actually considering an E36 convertible as a secondary vehicle. Does anyone who owns one - or has owned one - have any words of wisdom or things to watch out for?
captainaudio commented:
August 14, 2012, 6:43 pm

In most respects my 2007 has been reliable but its appetite for wheels and rims has kept it off the road several days each year. Found out today that I have 3 bent rims. I knew I needed new tires so I am replacing all 4 tires and rims this week.

Not really convertible related unless the added weight is a factor.



CA
Nordic_Kat commented:
August 14, 2012, 11:56 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by kashrahman View Post
so this is probably the wrong time to mention that my baby had 2 service visits last month. First was top was stuck almost closed --- something was overheating and as a failsafe the top stopped moving. it looked closed but the entire drive to the dealership she kept warning me "top not closed properly!! warning!!" luckily she stayed in one piece. I'll double check to see what they replaced.

then 2 weeks later she intermittently wouldn't function. they found a loose connection in the actual switch (between the drivers seat) and fixed that, which makes me wonder about my theory of usage. I expect by the end of this summer to have used the top mechanism about 2000 times (at least 500/year). She was perfectly fine the first two years, but last year went in 4 times, twice this year.

Thankfully, all this is merely annoying at worst. Almost each time my dealer will pick her up and leave and loaner, and everything has been covered under warranty. Still not sure how I'll feel once the extended warranty runs out . . .
Kash, your E93 might be a few months older than mine, but I would still bet I have more top cycles than you simply because I have more months of the year to exercise it. I still have one more year left on my warranty, but all told I would guess that I probably put close to 600 cycles on my top in a given year. Tomorrow starts my fourth year of ownership, sounds like I need to keep a score card for top operations tucked in my door.
Monsignor commented:
August 15, 2012, 10:53 am

Never heard of "Which?" before so they can sod the hell off.

I turn my own wrenches and i have a 26 year old 528e with 194k miles daily driven no issues and a modified 95 525i 244k mi that only spends days in the garage because it rains.

keep in mind the demographic of people who drive E92 convertibles. Probably dont like to get greasy, and probably dont like to pay dealership bills so unsavvy "garages" fiddling with technology would take longer to fix what blondie broke putting her makeup on.
Hound Passer commented:
August 15, 2012, 2:18 pm

Not my experience at all. I had a '07 and now an '11. The '97 was flawless, and no issues with the '11 yet.
Bobby Goodlife commented:
August 26, 2012, 11:01 pm

07 e93, love mine, 2rd BMW cabrio I've owned, this is by far my favorite. no issues what so ever.
captainaudio commented:
August 26, 2012, 11:39 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by 95 E34 View Post
Never heard of "Which?" before so they can sod the hell off.

I turn my own wrenches and i have a 26 year old 528e with 194k miles daily driven no issues and a modified 95 525i 244k mi that only spends days in the garage because it rains.

keep in mind the demographic of people who drive E92 convertibles. Probably dont like to get greasy, and probably dont like to pay dealership bills so unsavvy "garages" fiddling with technology would take longer to fix what blondie broke putting her makeup on.
The vast majority of E93s are still under warranty.

CA
SteVTEC commented:
August 27, 2012, 11:53 am

Well speak of the devil, I just dropped mine off this morning for another top issue. It was stuck down last week, so I swung by the dealership and of course they couldn't replicate the issue. Pulled it into the garage and it worked fine and they cycled it a few times. Drove off like an hour later. Another day or two after that it stopped working again, this time stuck closed. It would roll down the windows and if I put my hand on the roof section that pulls away from the windshield I could feel a pulsation as if the motor was trying to work, but didn't have the power. So dropped it off again this morning and have a 335d loaner now and will see what they say. In the weeks leading up to this I noticed it was getting a bit flaky and sometimes wouldn't immediately close or open, but trying to cycle it again always cleared it up.