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Leaving BMW forever. 3 guesses why?

Discussion in 'BMW' started by yzfr1tony, Sep 23, 2012.

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    yzfr1tony

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    Anyone that has a new (2009-2012) BMW ignore this. Anyone out of the warranty period, read on:

    I had an E36 325i 1993. My mechanic told me when I bought it straight up: There are things on this car that I either do not have the equipment to fix, or the knowledge. I had it for 5 years. The only problem with my mechanic? When they changed my brakes, my brake light stayed on, despite having 100% fresh brakes. They failed to instal the sensor wire/connector correctly. Whatever, I could live with it. I destroyed the car. I got it (instead of a replacement sportbike) after a guy made an illegal turn and destroyed my Yamaha YZF-R1. I pushed it to the limits, and beat the crap out of it until it finally had enough. It had lasted 5 years longer than any other car would've. And with minor investment, it could've went on.

    Fast forward to my latest purchase. an E38 7-series. Day 1, I washed it. Of course I would've washed it more carefuly had I known about the Electronics Box (back left under hood) was clogged and flooded the wiper relays. After 12 days at an Independent BMW Mechanic, I told him just to rig it. He did, and my wipers now operated with a toggle switch they didn't even bother to mount, hanging freely by the shifter. Strike 1

    No big deal. I was still in the nicest car available in 1995, other than a Rolls or whatever. And rolling better than 99% of the 2013 cars out there. I could live with a wiper toggle switch.

    I was adding coolant. Not much at all. Topping off every 2-3 weeks. It never even triggered the dash computer message to Check Coolant.

    Then I saw white smoke, after about 3 months. Kept driving, topped off coolant the next morning.

    2 hours later, the white smoke was back, and this time, the temp guage started going to about 75% (normal is straight up and down 50%). I pull off. Tow car to the dealer. Strike 2

    The BMW Dealer calls to say there are 3 things leaking. I said to fix the main leak (aka white smoke, tow truck leak, not the mini ones I added for 4-5 times a month). I asked what the worst was, The Main Hose. I figured it was the one spraying from behind the engine or something.

    They get the part. Call me. I get 1.5 miles from the dealership, white smoke. "Oh he must've spilled coolant topping off, i will just burn it off." 1/2 a mile later, temp gauge goes to 60%, I pull off. Call dealer. I ask what hose was replaced (I detailed under the hood, so I couldn't look for the "new shiny hose among the old dusty ones". They replaced the 13" one (two hose clamps, $30 part, and NOT what was the main leak). $405

    At this point I am furious. It's one thing to spend $405 to fix a $30 part/4 minute repair. But to not even make it home? My main reason to freak out? They never test drove it, warmed up, under pressure (at least 2 miles) or else their tech would've broke down, not me!!!!!! Strike 3 I am done.

    I sell the car to a wrecker that argued the car wasn't 4000 pounds. Scrap is per 100 pounds. "That is like 2 chevy cavaliers!" he said. "It's a big car, a 740iL, like a mini-limo." No way, he said. I get owners manual "Yeah, you are right, it's not 4000 lbs, it's 4140 (or whatever the manual said)!" I said. He came and got it. Yes I know i could've got more on craigslist, but I wanted to avoid someone rebuilding it, and the headaches that would ensue, either dealer experiences, or electronics etc. I did someone a favor...

    The Service Advisor talks of a Refund. 3 seperate ones actually. But the repair and labor is an issue. I say I never made it home, I want some of that money too, no one test drove my car. A week later no call, no check. As promised by that Friday... Strike 4

    Friday comes, I can't even get the advisor/manager in service on the phone. I go up in person. Service advisor says "honestly, the manager doesn't want to budge." I let a few f words fly, and tell him I will talk to the Service Manager. I am not scared of anyone.

    They escort me to a more isolated area. After explaining myself and 60 minutes of things like "We can't assure a repair for 500 miles." etc etc I say "It wasn't 500 miles, it wasn't even 5 miles, I overheated 2 miles away at the high school. No one f***ing test drove my car." Strike 5

    At this point, I am mf-ing and f-ing up a storm. I don't care if it was a Ferrari dealer, I am not going to be bullied around. They call the general manager in and say "They will tell you what i just told you. She is a VERY nice lady that I met a few times at the dealership. I explain 90 minutes after sitting down, for the third time to the third person, my situation.

    4 minutes later, she asks what I want in return, I tell her. They cut a check, I am out the door.

    NEVER LET ANY COMPANY PUSH YOU AROUND! That second guy did everything he could to frustrate me and basicaly his job was to get me to say "F*** THIS!" and walk out. Little did they know I wasn't leaving without a Police escort...

    I will get another BMW when they can train people to actually fix their cars. I imagine that Porsches and Mercedes are over engineered just as much as our BMW's. So I went back to (this may shock you, sit down...) Subaru. In the rare instances when my Subaru has failed in the past, it was never anything my regular mechanic couldn't fix. I like to drive my cars, not have to join a car club to save 15% on parts/labor, have people rig my wiper relays with a toggle switch instead, etc etc etc.

    Car for car brand new, can my Subarus hang with my BMWs if they had 10 miles on them each? No. The 325i was a precision rocket, and the 7 was an amazing ride. And my first V8. No redlining for power, 1000 rpm, uphill, 1st gear, 3rd gear, it just pulled. Very cool and worth the MPG penalty in my opinion.

    BUT, it's so nice not having to join a club, go to a dealer for most anything (and still get screwed at times on the fix) and not deal with (for example) brake light and tail light "sockets" that corrode. Way over engineered. Just use a Subaru Tail Light Design please on 2014 BMW's and up... I understand the heated wires at the wiper blade area on the front windshield In my 7... I understand the battery in the trunk passenger side (3 and 7)... I get it. But no thanks... Keep your overengineered Bulb Sockets in the trunk... Keep your $20 coolant that I *must use* or my (already fragile) cooling system will corrode. Keep all the things that make a BMW "picky and edgy" to the point that you could buy a 1985 Chevy S-10 piece of s***, and still LOVE it because you don't have to take it to a Chevy dealer at $100+ hour rates like a BMW.

    When BMW can fix their own cars, I might consider coming back. Or when they engineer their stuff better, so that regular mechanics can fix them, I might be back. So yeah, in other words, I am done with BMW forever. I am sure a few jaws drop when i say this, but I am going back to Subaru.

    Is Subaru as nice inside as my BMW's? No. But it is close enough that if the BMW dealer gave you one for a rental/repair vehicle you wouldn't "hate" it for those days. Is it going to get looks like my 3 and 7 series did? No. But that is a good thing... People are stupid, and don't realize that for the price of their Chevy Cobalt, they could've gotten 2 or maybe 3, used BMW's that would treat them well (E36 etc), so they get all weird on you.

    I can't expect you all to trade your M5's in on a Subaru Legacy. I get it. But, when given the choice of any car (within reason, like $115,000 and under) for my job next year: I chose Subaru. "I have a buddy that sells BMW, Mercedes, Land Rover and Porsche????!!!!!!!????"

    "No. Never again. Get me a Subaru base model, Legacy, Impreza or Forester... Outback, whatever... And I will get an STi if I get bored out there with my own money."

    To me, Porsche would be worse. Because they don't sell as many as the 3-series etc etc, so it would be even more money and more dealer dependant (how many mechanics even get a Cayman S at their shop?) etc....

    Mercedes, except for a few, always seemed like they were playing catchup with BMW. Look at a 1993 E36 BMW. Now look at a 1993 Mercedes C-Class. It looks like it is out of the 60's or 70's...

    Anyway, I love the BMWCCA. Not just for tech advice etc, but for the race and autocross type extras, and Club Events and hell, just the people are cool that I have met. But if I want speed, i will get another Yamaha R1. Mine was a 2000, and was 0-60 in 2.9 seconds, 9.97 second 1/4 mile stock. Even the lovable M3 can't hang. Hold your R1000 or whatever that BMW sportbike is comments... I could get an R1 for each day of the week for that price, because that 1000R or whatever didn't even come out until 2008 or so. And I already described my Subaru love for 4-wheels.

    It's not the money. I could've had a free Bimmer next year. It's what i am willing to endure. The Ultimate Driving Machine? Yes. The worst dealer network/maintainance/service? Yes, that too. $100+ an hour labor? Yup. No thanks. May as well pee that money away in a boat or plane purchase. lol

    I am done. For good. When i get that itch to have a BMW again in 2018, I will just remember the botched 7-series repairs, and even the slight E36 nuances of maintainance, that made them the Ultimate Annoying Machines.

    Anyway, best wishes to all and i wish you better luck than I had with repair people's knowledge etc.
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    CRKrieger

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    Let me get this straight:

    You have a 'mechanic' who can't even install a brake pad sensor right. (Strike One)

    You buy cheap (already beaten) 10- to 15-year-old BMWs and beat the crap out of them. (Strike Two)

    You don't pay sufficient attention to dire warning signs. (Strike Three)

    When you do bother to get them fixed, you cheap out instead of making sure it's fixed right. (Strike Four)

    You think a Subaru will thrive on the same level of abuse and neglect. (Strike Five)

    I suppose I should just pay attention and avoid being an instructor for any Subarus I see showing up at the track. I've got better ways to die than riding in your car.
    MrsBee likes this.
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    Satch SoSoCalifortified

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    Yo, Tony: there are good dealers and bad ones, good mechanics and not-so-good mechanics, at dealerships and at independent shops. I am sorry that BMW schemed and plotted to make sure you got a bad one.

    drummerfc guest

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    These 2 paragraphs are the biggest things that made me go "HMMMMM" about Tony's rant. :confused:

    First of all...as soon as the mechanic says something like "there are things on this car that I either do not have the equipment to fix or the knowledge", this is my que (and could it BE any bigger of a que????) to high-tail it outta his shop/garage faster than any 50's-year-old-caucasian male could hope to! He told Tony straight-up that he didn't have the skill or wherewithall to fix his car and yet Tony allowed him to proceed. WTF??

    Secondly, any one o' us here on this forum coulda/woulda helped Tony find SOMEONE to perform his repairs the right way. We might have suggested someone we used...we might have refered him to the website that lists indy repair shops that specialize in BMWs (bimmrs.org? can't remember). He could have looked on bimmerforums.com - there's a whole host of good info on that board. He could have checked his local chapter...I'm sure somebody there would have either referred him or fixed the darn things for him. Life is too short to work for a-holes, drive crappy cars (hello = SUBARU...really????), or allow knuckleheads to "fix" our rides.

    Finally...Tony - I feel for you bro, but I believe Don Henley (Glenn Fry?) of the group The Eagles said it best in one of their first hits -

    "Often times it happens, that we live our lives in chains,
    And we never even know we have the KEY!"

    :cool:

    In other words...you don't have to accept the unacceptable...yaknowwhatI'msayin???
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    CRKrieger

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    There. FTFY.
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    Zedfor

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    I never understood why some people blame everything that happens to them on something or someone else, instead of their own shortsightedness. When we purchased our '07 CPO X3 from a local dealer we were very happy with them until we had the car in for service. I won't go into the details, but each time we took the car into the dealer we purchased it from it was an unmitigated disaster, the result being numerous re-visits and waited time. Guess what? We don't use that dealer anymore. Third times a charm as they say. The dealer we use now is just as professional and just as close as the previous, but they don't screw up. Our decision to change dealers resulted in a positive outcome. Our decision to by CPO also resulted in a more reliable car and when something does go wrong it is covered, for the most part, by the CPO warranty. You can't expect to buy a POS car without having a competent mechanic inspect it first and believe it will be anything but a nightmare to own. So, Tony, my advice to you is to get a clue as well as a new mechanic.
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    yzfr1tony

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    You guys didn't READ, as usual in Forums. People just speed read, find the first thing to Flame Reply to and then rant... The 7 series was screwed up and not fixed by the BMW Dealer. Not my 3-series mechanic (that by the way, fixed everything correctly, no major problems in 5 years until the end when repeated high rpm launches etc destroyed the guibo and by chance the throwout bearing went as well, sold the car). I told you I mistreated the car. That tends to happen when you live at 140mph on a sportbike daily. Cars are F**king SLOW (Buggatti owners ignore this) after that.
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    yzfr1tony

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    And they weren't piece of s**t cars. That 3 series was 13 years old and the second or third most reliable car I ever had. Behind only 2 Subarus that were not beaten and driven hard like the 3 was. E36's were well built cars. I beat that car for 5 years and only paid for brakes and oil changes/air filter etc. I am positive that you have done more to your latest generation BMW's, unless it's a garage queen with 300 miles on it. Get your facts straight before you call a BMW a POS just because it's not the new one you drive.
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    yzfr1tony

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    Not driving 45 minutes to get my car fixed properly. I feel sorry for those that do. Anyway, I got another Subaru (just in time for the appoaching Winter), haven't had a car issue since, and can go on with more important things in life. Yeah I miss the 3 series handling, and the 7 series luxury, but like I said, I prefer to not have my car on my mind and focus on other things.

    If I wanted to search forums all day for common fixes (such as the wiper relays flooding on the E38 e-box) or dive 90 minutes round trip to have my "car fixed properly" I would just have a child. Less work. Not interested in doing either of those options.

    I am happier now. And as I said before, I will just get another Yamaha R1 if I need speed and handling and maintain it myself, with better performance numbers than any BMW, less hassle, and no bulls**t.

    For the record, I spent 90 minutes and got my refund from the BMW dealer. And even got a full refund on all parts that were uninstalled at the time the 7 went. And sold the 7. Washed my hands of BMW forever, and couldn't be happier.

    Just accept it. Thanks.
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    mrsbee

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    I typically stay out of stuff like this, but really I have to ask, what did you expect the response to such a thread would be? You posted on a BMW enthusiasts forum, we love our cars, and we will defend them. We can sympathize with tech issues, we can even sympathize with the occasional bad mechanic, but really, take it somewhere else.

    It's the polite thing to do. Bad mouth about us and our cars on a subie Site.

    Don't ruin our days, please.
    • Member

    yzfr1tony

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    " Life is too short to work for a-holes, drive crappy cars (hello = SUBARU...really????), or allow knuckleheads to "fix" our rides."




    :cool:

    lol Subaru = Crappy cars? Sorry. I prefer to just drive and change oil/air filter and not base my entire life around strict maintainance and BMW antifreeze and all the other s**t that comes with owning a BMW. Another wanna-be f**king yuppie. LOL A (humble I may add) friend and future boss owns a new Lambourghini Advantador (or whatever) 1300hp (on race gas modified) Gallardo, a 500hp Subaru STi hatch, 2009 Bugatti Veyron and yes a few BMW's (2011 M3 and a Rolls Royce Ghost). And trust me, he is not impressed with your BMW. But he would still have the common sense not to call Subaru "crappy", despite owning the nicest cars made... Subaru = crappy? LOL Yeah, if you want a car that lasts without having it's ass tickled monthly to keep it's German flaws at bay... Subaru life is uneventful and boring, i admit, just the way vehicle ownership should be.
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    yzfr1tony

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    Sti'
    s are decent track cars, and if they die in an all-wheel-drive vehicle (where basicaly the only way to wreck is to understeer because you enter a corner too hot, no different than an IX or XI or XDrive BMW by the way, moron), then maybe you need to find another job, because you aren't qualified to teach Drivers Ed much less a Track Day, you jackass.
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    yzfr1tony

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    In other words, if you can't drive an STi at the track, or show someone how, then get the hell off the track, and get some lessons yourself.
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    yzfr1tony

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swjSfdKx6wY&feature=player_embedded

    There is what a "crap" Subaru is capable of. Let Satch Carlson explain it to you if your narrow minds can't wrap around it. He knows about WRC. BMW isn't any of the footage for these years in the World Rally Championship on Youtube. But the racing series still existed. Take a look outside of Roundel magazine. You might be amazed when you open your sewn shut eyes...
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    yzfr1tony

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    And Drummerfc, it's a damn shame Colic McRae (helicopter crash) and Richard Burns (brain tumor) have died. They could've shown your students how to "not die" in a Subaru. Too bad those guys paying you money are getting ripped off with a sh**ty instructor. Maybe Solberg and Makinen have some free time to give YOU some lessons on how to drive a Subaru properly. If not, then watch the above video, if he can do it on a car-wide single lane road, surely you can learn how on the nations many great racetracks...
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    yzfr1tony

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    Nice try at humor Satch. But the Wiper Relays in the 7-series were a design flaw. So actually the BMW engineers planned it that way, accidentaly.

    And don't even get me started on the V8 Nikasil issues (100% fail rate due to the high sulfur in the 1990's of USA fuel, Sulfur eats Nikasil) that i avoided getting a rebuilt engine.

    They actually DID "plan" (engineer design) to cause some of the issues.

    That is the REAL joke.

    Nice try though man. Your joke backfired. "B" for effort though chief.
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    mrsbee

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    Sorry to offend you. I hope you get sorted out.
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    steven s

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    I guess when all is said and done, it's time to close the thread.
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