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You sometimes have to repair other cars too?


Bruce Nunnally

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Because we often read posts from people who need help with their cars, Readers often wonder if Cadillacs have an inordinate number of malodies. I mean, gosh, look at all these posts about fuel pressure regulators or what not.

Here is a list of things to watch for on your 2000 BMW M5 for comparison, taken from a how-to-buy advice at http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=38950

The used M5 buyer should consider the service and repair profile of the car, paying careful attention to MTBF of certain critical components, and other less critical but nonetheless aggravating ones that tend to break down at somewhat predictable times in the M5's service life.

From the experiences of several friends who own MY2000 cars, and from consulting with the service advisor over a few drinks after work one evening, here are my conclusions on MY2000 cars:

1. The VANOS will go. It's not if, it's when. Probably at around 50-75K miles. If you are unlucky enough to be without warranty, plan on spending about $2-4K.

2. The clutch will go. It's not if, it's when. This is a well-known weak point on the M5. Driving styles and conditions can play into this. Better look for a car that has had a kind-hearted, skillful driver and a recent, documented clutch replacement.

3. The wheel bearings will go. It's not if, it's when. Another well-known weak point on E39's. Listen for odd vibrations coming (most often) from the front wheels when making a turn.

4. Rear sway bar brackets. Most of us are shocked at how inadequate the original brackets are. Not a difficult replacement. Potential disaster if ignored. Inspect them yourself and even better yet, look for an enthusiast owner who knew enough to have them replaced. When you find such a person, chances are most other issues with the car have been given proper attention.

5. Various irritating electronics problems will occur. There's no real mileage-related milestone pattern for this one. Personally, my A/C controller went down at 40K. Easy to fix, but quite uncomfortable if it goes during the summer months. Expensive (like everything else) if not covered under warranty.

6. (related to #5 above) Instrument cluster LED’s on many E39’s have been known to go out for no apparent reason. Segments of the message center display will simply disappear. Luckily, mine went out under warranty. I ended up getting the entire instrument array replaced with the newest version. Most M5 owners probably won’t replace this one if the cost is out-of-pocket. Better look for a used M5 that has already had this taken care of.

Bruce

2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black

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Gee..You mean we're not alone out there?.. ;)

...bbobynski would love that post...

Hey, what the heck is 'VANOS' anyway? ( I just want my gloat to have a little more detail..)

'93 STS.. opened, dropped, wide...fast.

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BMW's version of VVT: VANOS is a combined hydraulic and mechanical camshaft control device managed by the car's DME engine management system.

Bruce

2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black

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Well, at 130K I'm not unhappy, since Bobynski was involved I think I expect at least 200K before having too much trouble. Heh heh. This big difference I see is that in problems that we have, most can be fixed with a good shade tree mechanic lot's of readin on this list & archives, and some time. The problems withthe BMW seem to be the surrender to the dealer type. Almost like being in a stick up! Jessie James Used a GUN and the BMW dealer uses a cash register and a service rep! Yeeeeeeeikes!

By the way, We put a fram filter on a BMW, It failed, Fram paid for the car, so we went with a new engine from same year, We could not get fuel to it for anything. After months at the dealer it was discovered that the computer had a issue with the replacement engine, once discovered it only took moments to fix. But thousands. My sister's kid still drives the car. But he was w/o it for 16 months because of the Fram filter and the engine swap. Too technical for even BMW to figure out. LOL MC

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BMW's version of VVT: VANOS is a combined hydraulic and mechanical camshaft control device managed by the car's DME engine management system.

The remarkable thing about that link was the info at the bottom...After 50k or so miles on the BMW's, there are requirements that for all intents and purposes are guarenteed to cost the owner 7-10,000$...A sure thing. Geezz.

'93 STS.. opened, dropped, wide...fast.

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