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      02-28-2012, 07:59 PM   #45
Raz335
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Hi Folks,

Looked for this on the forums, and did not find an equivalent thread, so I am posting.

What is the average lifetime of an M3 if I purchase one new? That is, how many years before it is wiser to sell the car than keep up with maintenance? Please share your experiences. I am close to pulling the trigger on a 2012 ...

About 4-5 months give or take a month. After that it turns into a pumpkin.
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      02-28-2012, 08:58 PM   #46
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yes its reliable
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      03-01-2012, 04:40 PM   #47
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With any car, there is a small risk you are getting a lemon. If you make it past the initial 4 years of free maintenance and warranty without major (or multiple) issues, then your car is probably not a lemon.

Based on the information I have regarding the older M models that feature the exotic high-revving M-special engines (means excluding fromt he conversation cars like the US E36 M3), the engines last to at least 150k miles. After that, you may or may not be facing a rebuild, depending on multiple factors (how you drove it, how you maintained it, luck, etc.).

The rest of the drivetrain is typically also M-specific, meaning you get different hubs, bearings, driveshafts, differentials, transmissions, etc which are tougher than the rest-of-the-range items, but since many M cars see accelerated wear (track, aggressive driving etc.) I would call it a wash.

And finally, the rest of the car is like any other BMW pretty much. So problems will statistically be based on model, options and usage.

Additionally, I think technologies like DCT/SMG are a little too new for accurate predictions, but personally I seriously doubt their reliability is as good as that of the manual transmissions. Same thing goes for things like the MOST bus, the various computers in the car, sensors etc.

My guess (with old school maintenance) is you should be good to go to about 80-90k without a hitch, then with moderate expenses to 150k (consumables like O2 sensors/cats, seals, window regulators whatever etc.), but after that it's probably a crapshoot.


I think that many modern cars are built with a specific, and limited, service life in mind. Planned obsolescence is the term I believe. It would be bad for business otherwise. Literally, they don't build them like they used to.
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      03-01-2012, 09:24 PM   #48
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I think that many modern cars are built with a specific, and limited, service life in mind. Planned obsolescence is the term I believe. It would be bad for business otherwise. Literally, they don't build them like they used to.
There was a time I believed this but no more.
To me a better way to understand car longevity is this: the car will go as far as the driver wants it to. That is to say, as long as he likes it, as long as he likes to look at it, as long as others recognize it, as long as he (or she) gets a thrill driving it, as long as there is a spot in the garage next to the station wagon , as long as the driver is willing to put up with the occasional tow, as long as they don't ask it to do something in its old age that it can't do, and so forth.
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      03-02-2012, 11:32 AM   #49
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To me a better way to understand car longevity is this: the car will go as far as the driver wants it to.
Of course, you can keep a car going 100 years after its manufacture date, as evidenced by numerous classic old timers. The question is though, how much money will you spend in the process?
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      03-02-2012, 11:44 AM   #50
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Of course, you can keep a car going 100 years after its manufacture date, as evidenced by numerous classic old timers. The question is though, how much money will you spend in the process?
The cars of 100 years ago or even 75 or 50 where made of METAL and had far fewer parts. Much easier and simpler to keep going.

I can't imagine what it would take to keep say an SMG M5 going for 100 years. I'll pass.
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