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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I've been a long time BMW owner, 88 735i, 2004 325xi, 2006 550i, 1978 530i. So after 4 1/2 years driving a Jeep Renegade, which is ok except for the very slow transmission.

I found a 2014 320i xdrive with 65000 miles for $12,500. I've had good luck with all my BMW's except for the 550i which started to blow lots of smoke at 112,000 miles so I dumped it.

How reliable are the new 3 series, is there anything I should be aware of or can I get some trouble free years without worries, just routine stuff.

I'm not worried about speed, just reliability.

Thanks, jjp
 

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You're not going to be real pleased to hear this. The N20 motor prior to mid-2015 has had issues with the timing chain. The plastic guide can fail causing catastrophic failure. The warranty was extended to 7 yrs/70k miles. The indicator of a problem is a high pitched whine on acceleration.
 

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Yes I know about this problem and this one has a record of the timing chain guide upgrade from BMW dealer. So looks like it was caught in time and fixed.
 

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What mileage was the TC job done? My take is that conservatively the replaced TC should last at least another 70k to 100k miles.

Given your past history with old gen bimmers, this new gen F30 probably is a step or two up in terms of reliability.

BTW PA is a PZEV state, so a N26 engine actually has 15 years/150000 miles emission warranty on many parts, including VCG and ignition coils. And a MY16 N26 actually has TC listed as PZEV part too!

Unfortunately N20 is not covered for 15 years/150000 miles.
 

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My 320i (F20, 2013, N20 engine) is fine. I've spend zero dollars on repairs since I got the car in 2013. I had one minor problem with a tail light, fixed under warranty. I know someone nearby who has the same car as me (same year, model, color, transmission, and almost the same VIN, just a one digit different - maybe his car passed the assembly line 3 minutes before mine?) and he hasn't had problems either. Sample size=2.
 

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What mileage was the TC job done? My take is that conservatively the replaced TC should last at least another 70k to 100k miles.

Given your past history with old gen bimmers, this new gen F30 probably is a step or two up in terms of reliability.

BTW PA is a PZEV state, so a N26 engine actually has 15 years/150000 miles emission warranty on many parts, including VCG and ignition coils. And a MY16 N26 actually has TC listed as PZEV part too!

Unfortunately N20 is not covered for 15 years/150000 miles.
I’m confused. When BMW. Ha yes the timing chain and guide is it the new improved version? If so, why wouldn’t it last more than 100,000 miles?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you all for the information, still looking around, but hoping to get back into BMW soon. Maybe next post will be with pics of new to me BMW.

Thanks, jjp
 

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I have a 2015 320i with 72k miles on it (bought it with 27k). No problems other than a little bulb that went out, which the dealer replaced free of charge.
 

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I’m confused. When BMW. Ha yes the timing chain and guide is it the new improved version? If so, why wouldn’t it last more than 100,000 miles?
According to part# there is no new improved timing chain nor guard rail nor slide rail, there is a new part# on chain tensioner but it is unclear if that is culprit or not(BMW techs and foremen do not seem to think so). I

n other words, it is clear as mud if replacing all the parts will last 70k or 100k or 200k+, so my conservative estimate is another 70k to 100k trouble free miles(given the factory parts on this car lasted < 70k miles).
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I stopped last night at the BMW dealer I've used for many years and they seem to think that a lot of the bad info on the n20 is internet BS. They even bought out one of the tech guys in the back, that I happen to know over the years and he has not had to repair one. That was just him, not saying the dealer has not done any.

They seemed pretty confidant and both like the n20 engine.

Thanks for all the info and after doing a ton of searching, I do believe the internet has made the timing chain problem bigger then what it really is. Even if there is a lawsuit out there.
 

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I'm with Dave 20T. I now have over 101,000 miles on my 2013 silver 320i, 6MT, sport package--and this car has never even gone out of state. Have had zero problems with this car--my third BMW. I drive it like I stole it, every day. It is just SO much fun to drive! This is my first BMW that I have not taken to a track day--but that's due to my insurer. They used to cover un-timed track days, but now they don't even cover events in the parking lots at the track, let alone on the track! Day of use insurance is too pricey. My last BMW--since it looks like I can never buy a new MT BMW car.
 

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I'm with Dave 20T. I now have over 101,000 miles on my 2013 silver 320i, 6MT, sport package--and this car has never even gone out of state. Have had zero problems with this car--my third BMW. I drive it like I stole it, every day. It is just SO much fun to drive! This is my first BMW that I have not taken to a track day--but that's due to my insurer. They used to cover un-timed track days, but now they don't even cover events in the parking lots at the track, let alone on the track! Day of use insurance is too pricey. My last BMW--since it looks like I can never buy a new MT BMW car.
I think there will be a G20 based M3 with a manual. However, that's at a cost of about double the G20 price.

Hey, Nordique, maybe when you're at 200,000 miles and ready for a new car, have your car become a parts car for me? Since it's the same color, if I ever have body damage, your car as a parts car could come to the rescue. With no more MT, I am hoping to keep my 320i until possibly 2028, 2030 or even longer. 2030 is when the mid cycle update (LCI) of the G20-replacement comes out. If so, it will be the longest I've ever owned a car.
 

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Hey, Dave, I thought I might tempt you into a reply! Happy holidays to you and your family and friends! An M3 is way above my price point--and it might not even be a safe choice for me, driving the way I do. MY 320i provides some curbs to my rowdy driving style! While I still double-clutch downshifts, I can no longer do heel and toe, after nine right leg surgeries--the most recent being ankle fusion May 31: I have only minimal right ankle movement. They say I may be able to walk without a crutch or crutches by May 31 next year! The first of my right leg surgeries was in Vietnam in 1968--and I was lucky not to lose my lower leg, due to how my tibia was shattered from knee to ankle. At age 76, I'm not sure I will still be alive and driving when my car hits 200,000 miles! That said, my dad died at age 90 and my mother died earlier this year, five months after her 100th birthday!
 
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