Last post on Sep 16, 2012 at 10:07 AM
You are in the BMW 7-Series
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BMW 7 Series
#961 of 1317 The Ultimate Service Machine; The Power of Branding
Dec 10, 2003 (7:49 pm)
I've been thinking about getting either a new or a late model 7 Series for some time. I joined BMWCCA in anticipation of a BMWUSA rebate when I buy one. Because you have to have been a member for a year or more to get the rebate, I joined a year or so ago in anctipation of my big move. Part of the package for your $35 is a subscription to Roundel.
For a car nut like me who hasn't owned Bimmers since grad school in the early 70's, it makes fascinating reading. Naturally there is the usual sociological tension between the true believers who still have 2002s and the bourgeois financial service types who are snapping up the latest cars. But the interesting thing is the range of tech problems and service requirements. No anal-compulsive Porche owner or even Abrams M1 crew chief has anything on some of the service levels required and problems encountered. The letters to the editor and letters to Tech Talk are filled with stories that would cause the owners of any other brand to firestorm the company plant.
Just looking at 7 Series problems (we won't even mention the oil pump nut backing off issue on the M3s, etc.), in the December issue there is a letter from a guy with a 1997 740i who spent 10K of his own money on a new engine because a plastic (??) radiator extension broke. And the car is a CPO (see home.earthlink.net/~hainesinutah/radiator)! In the Tech Line section of the same isssue a guy got banged 3.5 hours by his dealer to replace a crankshaft positon sensor. Roundel acknowledges the job would take a "very seasoned do it yourself type" about an hour, defends the flat rate time and then comments that, thank God for small favors, this this problem is "common only on BMW V8 engines."
Wow. I sure want to go out and buy a BMW after reading this.
#962 of 1317 buy a beemmer, get a dealer
Dec 12, 2003 (8:35 am)
The radiator is the weakest point on the E38 7-series. But with all respect to the owner who complained, he had to be a moron as these cars have more bells, whistles and chimes than can be imagined--when something is amiss enough to potentially damage the engine the car will kick into "limp home" mode and SCREAM at you to do something.
I'm also guessing that someone sold him a new engine, at an inflated price, when the old one just needed a bit of machine shop work. Because of the electronics and the head bolt design, it is pretty much impossible to crack/warp the block and heads on these cars through overheating.
The present problem with buying a BMW is that the company no longer releases service information on its cars to 3rd parties such as Bentley, Haynes, and Alldata. Thus, you MUST go to the dealer for any sort of significant service. That dealer now has a MONOPOLY and as anyone with economic training can tell you, this means you are screuwd.
I gave up on my local BMW dealer after one trip in which it became clear that I knew a lot more about the car than his "BMW certified technicians" did, and that his primary interest was emptying my bank account. I now do all my own work exclusively, except when I need special equipment, in which case I hire an independent and leave very specific instructions on what shall be done. For most potential BMW owners, this isn't an option, and the cost of the dealer's monopoly absolutely must be considered when buying one of these cars.
Everytime my 750 breaks I complain. Then I get it running again, take it out for a spin, and say "whoa baby, now I remember why I put up with this thing."
#963 of 1317 BMW 740iL cell phone question
Dec 22, 2003 (12:37 pm)
Hello all. I have a 2001 740iL which has an integrated Motorola cell phone. Love the car and I don't plan on getting rid of it for a few years, but the phone is four years old and getting a little dated based on the new technology available. The BMW dealership tells me they can't re-wire the car for a new phone, but I have been told by another party that it is possible. Does anyone out there have any experience in this, and if so, who might be able to integrate a new phone in a 3 year-old car?
#964 of 1317 cell phone
Dec 22, 2003 (2:51 pm)
I'm not sure what you mean (or if you know what you mean) by "rewire." You could pull the entire dash and integrate in one from a new 745. Probably cost about $200,000. I'm being a little funny, but exactly what "wires" do you think will be changed, and why? What's the real concept?
i have an old, integrated analog and any rewiring is impossible for me. the issue isn't analog/digital, it is finding a phone that has has the hardware and the software to integrate with and talk to the dash display, steering column stalks, etc. So it isn't the CAR it is the PHONE. Find out who really made your present phone (wasn't BMW, that's for sure) and ask them if there is an upgraded version. My guess is there will not be, but its worth a shot.
Dec 22, 2003 (4:51 pm)
IIRC, the 7 used a Motorola Star Tac, and I don't there is an adapter kit for a new phone. Which is why I no longer buy cars with integrated phones. Eventually, I trade out the phone before I trade out the car.
#966 of 1317 Cell phone question.
Dec 24, 2003 (8:46 am)
Thanks. You confirmed my suspicions. It sounds like I would have to get a hands-free system installed by one of the wireless carriers if I want a newer-generation phone. Unfortunately, that would negate the integration features of the car (steering wheel operation, automatic muting, etc.).
It seems as though Mercedes, BMW and other high-end manufacturers would allow for telephone upgrades with some type of adapter kit.
Dec 25, 2003 (10:39 am)
You would think, and perhaps they will now that phones change so quickly. But so far, I've seen a drastic attachment to old phone technology in the cars, in an attempt to be universal for all markets. For example, Lincoln has been using analog phones in all their cars for years, because there are some places in the country where digital phones are not used yet. But it's a terrible phone, IMO.
#968 of 1317 New 2004 760Li to buy or not to buy!
Dec 29, 2003 (8:22 am)
If anyone could offer any insight it would be appreciated! We are thinking of trading our 2001 750iL for a 2004 760Li TODAY! I haven't seen too many posts with info (problems etc) with the 760's - if anyone knows anything that would help with the decision, please let us know or e-mail at: jamie_homemindspring.com. The price here in Raleigh, NC (black on black - 10miles: $116,555.00 w/o taxes/tags). Thanks!
#970 of 1317 computer / software problem
Dec 29, 2003 (10:09 am)
2003 745i; i-drive computer lock-up occurs in hot weather on start-up after car has been sitting in sun/heat for period of time (live in nyc). on re-start, entire i-drive is locked up or "frozen" and cannot be accessed. car went into shop for two-week period; bmw claimed problem repaired. not so. same problem has now recurred three times. i-drive eventually unfreezes after car driven for period of time. anyone else had problem? if so, what was fix? thanks.