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      04-04-2012, 07:39 AM   #1
Western Force
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Thinking of buying my first BMW. A few questions

Hi All,

I'm new here but hoping to get some advice from people who know. I'm thinking seriously about buying my first BMW. I'd probably be looking at a 07 or 08 3 series (currently have a 05 VZ Commodore).

A few questions.

Which would be the better model?
Petrol or Diesel?
RFT or normal tyres (I live 110 km from the closest town (no tyre repair place) with about 50% gravel roads)?
Can oil changes/ service be done by me?
Whats deprecation like per year(roughly)?
Reliability compared to Holden?


Thanks in advance.
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      04-04-2012, 07:48 AM   #2
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Get a 320d, but try and see if you can stretch to an 09 model as that is when they got facelifted. They're known as LCI models. They have better looking exterior with different lights and bumpers. However if your budget doesn't stretch to an LCI model make sure you still get a car with M-Sport option.

There really isn't a big deal about swapping to non RFT tyres. They are much cheaper than RFTs and all you need to do is just carry around a goo kit or similar.

Oil change you can do yourself, and probably most service items, but you won't get a stamp in your logbook. For interim things DIY should be fine. If you're worried about depreciation then you may want to get logbook stamps as well.
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      04-04-2012, 07:48 AM   #3
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- 320d or 335i
- Normal tyres for sure
- Yes oil changes can be done DIY
- Reliability will be fine
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      04-04-2012, 07:58 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Western Force View Post
Hi All,

I'm new here but hoping to get some advice from people who know. I'm thinking seriously about buying my first BMW. I'd probably be looking at a 07 or 08 3 series (currently have a 05 VZ Commodore).

A few questions.

Which would be the better model?
Petrol or Diesel?
RFT or normal tyres (I live 110 km from the closest town (no tyre repair place) with about 50% gravel roads)?
Can oil changes/ service be done by me?
Whats deprecation like per year(roughly)?
Reliability compared to Holden?


Thanks in advance.
Hard to say depends on your budget and power requirements.

Both great IMO, again depends on what you require mileage and performance wise

RFs have advantages but cost is a killer, NRFs are my next stop mainly price reasons and improved ride quality.

You can change your own oil. Need to get the right oil and filter.

No idea.

I have only had one issue in 6 months vanos solenoid and thatís common I hear. I don't think BMWs are any less reliable then other vehicles. All depends on the condition of the 2nd had car you buy and if you take care of it.

Hope that helps

cheers

Joe
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      04-04-2012, 08:09 AM   #5
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It is pretty difficult to give you advice without a budget or what you're looking for in your new car, but if I had to drive a BMW on 50% gravel roads I would probably buy an X5.
Not that the other models wouldn't be suitable for gravel, I'm more concerned about chips in your paint.

Have a test drive in one I think you'll be quite surprised by their handling, I drove the X5 35i and it had plenty of power for its size.
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      04-04-2012, 08:24 AM   #6
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Yay more perth member - can't think of any other advice that the others haven't said.

Though if you want to feel the power of a 135/335 I can give you a ride in mine
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      04-04-2012, 08:32 AM   #7
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Given its your first BM can I recommend an 2003 E39 530i. They're arguably one of the best cars of all time. Will not cost you anywhere near as much to run as the newer cars and it's looks and safety are comparable to anything in the showroom today.

You can get a top notch example for about $15k or so....

I've had one and it's hands down the best (but not necessarily performance wise) car I've ever owned for reliability, ride etc
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      04-04-2012, 09:11 AM   #8
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The biggest factor here is budget.
If you tell us what you want to spend, you'll be given an idea of what the best car is in context of how much you're willing to spend.

Or you could just get a 335i and be done with it.
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      04-04-2012, 09:36 AM   #9
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If for 110k driving with no tyre shop around..I will say diesel with RFT.
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      04-04-2012, 10:14 AM   #10
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if your doing 100k/Day on gravel roads, I'd be avoiding a 3er personally and opting towards an X3/X5. BMW Sedans are not built for that sort of terrain/vibrations (as highlighted in the F01 7 Series test done a year or two back where they did 5-600k on gravel tracks and broke down! (cant remember what failed)
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      04-04-2012, 01:58 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suff
if your doing 100k/Day on gravel roads, I'd be avoiding a 3er personally and opting towards an X3/X5. BMW Sedans are not built for that sort of terrain/vibrations (as highlighted in the F01 7 Series test done a year or two back where they did 5-600k on gravel tracks and broke down! (cant remember what failed)
Plus 1. I'd be looking at an x5m or x6m.
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      04-04-2012, 06:01 PM   #12
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Thanks a lot for all the help so far.

My budget is around 35k (change over) so depends what I can get for the Commodore which I know won't be a lot (I'm working on 5k).

As far as the gravel roads, my mate who lives next door brought a new 530d in about 05 and did 150,000km with no issues regarding problems from the roads, before it was traded. The roads aren't as bad as you may think. Suff & Pavo- I take it you mean 500-600km and not 500,000 to 600,000 km as if its the bigger one I'd say it actually did quiet well!

Fuel economy isn't a big concern and neither is performance (to a degree), I'm more after something that rides well and is nice to drive.

Thanks again
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      04-04-2012, 06:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Western Force View Post
Suff & Pavo- I take it you mean 500-600km and not 500,000 to 600,000 km as if its the bigger one I'd say it actually did quiet well!
nah dude I mean an X5 or X6 (you know the soft roaders as opposed to a 3 series). but looking at your budget stop right there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Western Force View Post
Fuel economy isn't a big concern and neither is performance (to a degree), I'm more after something that rides well and is nice to drive.
PWOH time to up sell the 320dM
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      04-04-2012, 07:47 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Western Force View Post
Hi All,

I'm new here but hoping to get some advice from people who know. I'm thinking seriously about buying my first BMW. I'd probably be looking at a 07 or 08 3 series (currently have a 05 VZ Commodore).

A few questions.

Which would be the better model?
Petrol or Diesel?
RFT or normal tyres (I live 110 km from the closest town (no tyre repair place) with about 50% gravel roads)?
Can oil changes/ service be done by me?
Whats deprecation like per year(roughly)?
Reliability compared to Holden?


Thanks in advance.
I think for the type of roads you drive on, the VZ commodore seems a better vehicle. If you want to use the car as a daily driver, its hard to see the point of upgrading. I owned a VY until about 4 years ago. Depreciation of the BMW would be pretty bad in your case as I don't think they are really designed for unsealed roads and I think that type of use is likely to affect your trade in.

General servicing of BMW isn't super expensive, although far from cheap. The problem is if anything at all breaks down, it can be very expensive to get it fixed. You will face that type of risk when running up high kilometers on a used vehicle.
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      04-04-2012, 10:11 PM   #15
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Not sure how reliable they are after 100,000kms but you can pick up an E53 X5 with 60-70,000kms on it for under 35k.

For example: http://www.carsales.com.au/private/d...sort=~Odometer

EDIT: you can even pick up a 2007 X3 within your budget http://www.carsales.com.au/private/d...sort=~Odometer
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      04-05-2012, 08:12 PM   #16
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      04-05-2012, 09:00 PM   #17
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We have a 2004 x5 diesel and they are awesome. Auto gearboxes can give trouble (I had to rebuild mine) but other than that they are the best 4wd money can buy for the price and reliability if offloading is not what you are after. It will do everything you need it to do
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      04-05-2012, 11:10 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suff View Post
if your doing 100k/Day on gravel roads, I'd be avoiding a 3er personally and opting towards an X3/X5. BMW Sedans are not built for that sort of terrain/vibrations (as highlighted in the F01 7 Series test done a year or two back where they did 5-600k on gravel tracks and broke down! (cant remember what failed)
They hit the transmission sump on a rock and it started leaking oil. Nothing to do with vibrations, more a ground clearance, road obstacle thing.
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      04-05-2012, 11:18 PM   #19
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I think for the type of roads you drive on, the VZ commodore seems a better vehicle.
Or a nice aussie built Falcon - perfect for your conditions and budget.
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      04-06-2012, 12:10 AM   #20
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Don't buy a 3 series if you're driving off road.. I would get a range rover or something.
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      04-06-2012, 04:44 AM   #21
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OP

Who'd have thought that by coming to a BMW forum you'd be directed back towards a Holden or ford....

I doubt if you went to the holden forum and asked for advice on a performance car they would recommend an M3 before a HSV or FPV - even I they were the same price (BMw was a user car)

At least you know we have your best interests at heart and we're not just badge whores...

Seriously though, consider the E39 530i you will not be disappointed. I guarantee it!*










*Not a guarantee
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      04-06-2012, 05:21 AM   #22
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Quote:
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Or a nice aussie built Falcon - perfect for your conditions and budget.
Sorry, I'm not much of a Ford fan at all ! I think I will be going BMW or Holden.

Quote:
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Don't buy a 3 series if you're driving off road.. I would get a range rover or something.
I will NOT be driving off road. There's really nothing wrong with the local gravel roads, as I sit on 110kph easy and will do 130k no worries if I'm running late. The local shire do a pretty good job (surprisingly) on the roads!

The main reason I metioned the gravel roads was to get ideas on how the RFT handle on them (gravel) compared to normal tyres, and if it was worth changing to normal tyres as I thought most of the later 3's come with RFT standard. Also to get some ideas on punctures / reliability.

Thanks for all the comments so far as I'm open to ideas.
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