Are BMWs Reliable After 100k Miles? (Checked)

BMW is well established as a premium car manufacturer that also provides great driving performance. However, are BMWs trustworthy after driving for more than 100,000 miles?

It depends on the circumstances. Certain BMW vehicles have been known to travel more than 100.000 miles with minimal issues. However, this is conditional on a number of factors.

Are BMWs Reliable After 100,000 Miles?

The majority of BMW’s are reliable after 100,000 miles, especially if it’s a diesel, and also gasoline-powered BMW’s can crack on for many miles after they reach 100,000 as long as they’ve been properly looked after.

Nevertheless, there has been a growing trend where most newer BMW cars (post 2010) begin having major problems approximately a year after the manufacturer’s warranty ends, or around the 80,000 to 100,000-mile mark, depending on the model.

All of this is very dependent on how well you’ve kept up with the vehicle’s maintenance. However, regardless of how well you maintain your BMW, these cars have a limited lifespan, and the older a BMW becomes, the more expensive it becomes to maintain and keep it operational in the long term.

Also read: 3 Cheapest to Maintain BMW Models (& Costs)

What are the Most Common Problems with BMWs After 100,000 Miles?

The vast majority of BMW owners have learned that there are a few issues that nearly always reveal themselves on BMWs that have travelled 100,000 miles or more.

1. The cooling fails

If you haven’t changed your water pump, thermostat, reservoir, or radiator hoses in the last 100,000 miles, you should do so immediately! Because, while every car you buy will ultimately require a coolant system repair, only a few autos are as forgiving as BMWs, this is considered to be a “problem.”

Before your BMW reaches 100,000 miles, you should have these critical coolant components repaired.

Aluminum cylinder heads and engines, which are generally jammed into the engine compartment, are standard features on BMWs. Heat dissipation in BMWs is, at best, modest, but if the engine begins to overheat as a result of a leaking water pump or radiator line, the engine will quickly overheat. An unexpected head gasket repair may be required, which might result in a very large bill.

2. Oil leaks

BMW makes outstanding engines, but they have experienced a number of major failures in the past, and their engines are prone to a number of unusual oil leaks that are exclusive to BMW.

Oil leaking from the oil filter gasket is the most common source of oil leakage in BMWs with greater mileage. However, despite the fact that valve cover gasket breaches are the most common sort of oil leak on a BMW, they are most likely to require repair well before the vehicle has reached 100,000 miles.

The V8 BMW engines have more severe oil leakage problems than the other engines. Fortunately, they are not difficult to fix on BMW 3 Series vehicles. The majority of the time, they begin to leak after 100,000 miles. If you attempt to repair the valley pan gasket on your own, it will be an expensive and thankless endeavour.

Also read: 3 Best BMWs for the Money (+Cost Calculation)

3. Electric windows

Broken electric windows are one of the most often reported complaints among BMW owners who have logged a lot of miles on their vehicles. The regulator, as well as the electric motor, will bend and finally cease to function. Whichever one fails first, you should replace both at the same time to ensure proper operation. It seems likely that if one of them breaks, the other will not be far behind.

4. Vibrations in the Steering Wheel When Braking

If you experience your steering wheel shaking or vibrating during braking, there may be a problem with one of your thrush arm bushings. These rubber pieces are an integral part of your suspension system and have been known to fail at about 75,000 miles.

5. Door Handles

There have been some issues with the door handles on some of my BMWs, but not all of them.

BMWs frequently do not experience door handle problems until they have accumulated a certain amount of mileage.

However, when they do, there are two types of issues. The most common problem is with the outside driver’s side door handle. The handle will lift normally, but the door will remain shut.

The second issue is that the interior leather door handles on modern BMW models are a source of irritation since the glue around the interior handle can melt melted.

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What can I do to lessen the symptoms of these problems?

There are a number of things that a BMW owner may take to assist ensure the vehicle’s long-term durability. To ensure that the maintenance plan is followed, you should make every effort to work with an experienced expert. Maintenance should be performed on a regular basis to keep costs down and the likelihood of new problems down. Without having to worry about exorbitantly expensive upkeep later in its lifetimes, BMWs are already unreasonably expensive to purchase and operate.

Which Engines are the Most Reliable After 100,000 Miles?

There are several BMW engines that are dependable over 100,000 miles; further information is provided below.

The N52 was one of the most dependable modern BMW engines; it was produced from 2004 until 2015, when turbocharged engines eventually supplanted it. They are frequently found in BMW E93 and E636 series automobiles.

Another dependable modern BMW engine is the N55, which replaced the N54 from 2009 to 2019 and was superseded by the N58. The N55 engine is another dependable BMW option, available in the following vehicles.

  • F10,F11,F07
  • E90,E91,E92,E93
  • E70
  • F87
  • F22/23
  • F20/21

Also read: 5 Real Reasons why BMW is so Expensive

How to Take Care of Your BMW to Last Long?

If you’re looking for ways to make your BMW last longer, then following the advice and tips below will make sure that you can enjoy your ultimate driving machine for longer!

1. Engine Oil and air filters should be maintained.

Change your BMW’s oil and filter on a regular basis, at least yearly. Ensure that you also swap out your air filters on a regular basis.

2. Drive with caution.

Aggressive driving has the potential to cause engine damage in your BMW. Avoid strong acceleration and sudden stopping when at all feasible by using a light touch on the accelerator and maintaining a comfortable speed.

3. Check the condition of your car.

Ensure you or a qualified professional checks the main components of your cars engines at regular intervals for signs of wear and replace them as needed.

4. Insurance and a Limited Warranty

When acquiring a BMW, it is suggested that you obtain a comprehensive warranty. This will include any maintenance that your BMW might need, which might be rather costly if the repairs are not covered by the vehicle’s extended warranty.

Also read: BMW vs Audi: (Head-to-Head Depreciation)

What are the Best and Worst BMWs After 100,000 Miles?

Whether or not you should purchase a BMW with a high mileage depends heavily on how well it has been maintained, how well it has been serviced, and how well it has been driven. Additionally, the model of BMW you choose is quite important. Depending on the model, varying life durations might be expected.

As a general guide, when purchasing a newer BMW, look for a vehicle with fewer than 60,000 miles on the odometer. If you are looking for an older BMW that was produced before 2006, look for vehicles with less than 100,000 miles on the odometer.

See our top picks for the 5 best and 5 worst BMWs to own post 100,000 miles.

5 Best:

  • BMW 5 Series – F10 – 2010-2017 (N52 Petrol & B47 Diesel)
  • BMW 1 Series – F20 – 2011-2019 (B48 Petrol & B47 Diesel)
  • BMW 3 Series – E90 – 2004-2014 (N46 Petrol & N47 Diesel)
  • BMW X3 – F25 – 2010-2017 (N47 Diesel)
  • BMW 7 Series – F01 – 2008-2015 (N57 Diesel)

5 Worst:

  • BMW M3 – E46 – 2000-2006 (S54 Petrol)
  • BMW M5 – E60 – 2004-2010 (S85 Petrol)
  • BMW X5 – E70 – 2007-2013 (N62 Petrol)
  • BMW Z3 – E36 – 1995-2002 (M43 Petrol)
  • BMW Z4 – E89 – 2009-2016 (N54 Petrol)

BMWs have been documented to have travelled more than 300,000 kilometres, especially if they are diesels. Most Petrol BMWs have a lifespan of between 100,000 and 200,000 miles if they receive regular service and maintenance.

What are the Best BMW Alternatives After 100,000 Miles?

If you’re looking for an alternative to a BMW with 100,000 miles on the clock then good car manufacturers to look at are Volvo, Toyota & Mazda, they offer a wide range of models that are very reliable and you can check out more information on this in our blog here.


To conclude, BMWs are unfortunately not one of the most pain-free car brands on the market, and this is especially true in the premium vehicle market. 

BMW’s are normally reliable, but after 80-100,000 miles, they start to form progressively serious and expensive issues.  Nevertheless, for the vast majority of BMW owners, the car’s performance, handling, and overall quality more than compensate for the higher maintenance costs.

Perhaps this post was of use to anybody considering purchasing a BMW or who is wondering about the actual cost of a BMW. If you’d like to find out more about BMW’s & other car brands, check out the rest of the blog!


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