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Old 10-26-2009, 12:52 PM   #1
ISims

Name: ISims
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First post-long distance driving and BMW

Hello,
I have been reading this wonderful forum. I have to tell you that I have nothing to contribute in terms of BMW knowledge. I am a pretty good driver but I marvel at the depth of your car knowledge.
I am considering purchasing a used BMW. I have narrowed the field to either a E38 or E39 (Right now I am looking at 2002 540i, a 1997 540i or a 2001 740il.) After going through all the parameters that I have set out there is only one that is really bothering me. The vehicle would primarily be used for long distance driving. But, not just long distance driving as in driving for 4 or 5 hours but driving for 16 hours or more at a time. The only break would be to switch drivers, bathroom and meal breaks. I have been told by a non-owner that I should not be getting a BMW just for that very reason because those vehicles cannot stand that type of heat. I would like to know from BMW owners if I will have problems with overheating under those conditions.
Thank you
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Old 10-26-2009, 01:14 PM   #2
3050rpm
 
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I see no basis for such a ridiculous statement by that non-owner about long distance and heat, makes absolutely no sense. What you should be aware of in your settling on a used BMW is the "NikaSil" (I think I've got that right) problem that particularly affected the 4.0 liter V8 engines. The problem I believe was that high sulfur content gasoline in North America reacted with the cylinder sleeves leading to scoring of the cylinder walls, essentially failure of the engine. BMW made good on some engine replacements, but I think have long since discontinued doing that. I don't recall when or how the problem was finally rectified, but I think it existed into the mid-90s anyway, perhaps longer. So you should do your homework on the model or particular vehicle history, or better yet just avoid the V8s and stick with the far better proven, highly durable, and more fuel efficient I6s.

Last edited by 3050rpm; 10-26-2009 at 01:15 PM.. Reason: Correct an omission
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Old 10-26-2009, 02:04 PM   #3
ISims

Name: ISims
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3050rmp,
Thank you: great info. Based on what you say, the 528i, seems to be a better choice, for us, out of the three. (I narrowed it down to those three because there will be the odd time when four people will be in the car on some of those trips-back seat leg room.) Anyway, thank you again.
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