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(LiveLeak)   Man calmly and rationally explains the latest BMW design fault (language Not safe for work)   (liveleak.com) divider line 76
    More: Fail, BMW, Micro Power Module  
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4533 clicks; posted to Business » on 30 Aug 2012 at 8:59 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-08-30 09:14:43 AM  
Why do BMW's get such good mileage?

They do half their miles on tow trucks to the repair shop.
 
2012-08-30 09:16:18 AM  
Is water in the trunk of your vehicle that never goes off road (not even the SUVs) a common problem?
 
2012-08-30 09:16:34 AM  
My favorite experience with a BMW has, to date, been seeing dozens of them abandoned on roads during a snow storm while my little POS Echo puttered on by.
 
2012-08-30 09:17:54 AM  
Wow, he's really up in arms about this...
 
2012-08-30 09:32:05 AM  
Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.

Their mechanical engineers are damn talented though.

My guess is the mechanical engineers let their kids design the electronics for their science fair projects.
 
2012-08-30 09:34:43 AM  
That was entertaining.

/loves my 2004 Mercedes C 240
 
2012-08-30 09:35:40 AM  

impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.


Mercedes electrical engineers are no better. I can't say anything about Audi, I've never owned one.
 
2012-08-30 09:36:29 AM  

stuhayes2010: Is water in the trunk of your vehicle that never goes off road (not even the SUVs) a common problem?


Can be. Sometimes it's due to condensation, other times it's due to a design defect/leak. Honda S2000s have a design defect that causes a leak into the trunk. You would never know about it if you don't listen for sloshing, or never remove the tool kit. Water pools between the carpeted plastic liner and the actual tub. The leak is actually from the vent opening behind the bumper, which leads into the trunk. It *shouldn't* leak, but the plastic hood they used doesn't quite fully seal the opening, so you get a small stream of water during heavy rain. Easily fixed with caulk, but it causes the trunk liner to rot on most S2000s.

Of course, Honda doesn't put sensitive electronics back there...

/TMYK
 
2012-08-30 09:37:09 AM  

mainstreet62: impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.

Mercedes electrical engineers are no better. I can't say anything about Audi, I've never owned one.


Pretty much the same. All German cars exist to keep shop mechanics employed.
 
2012-08-30 09:49:16 AM  
I found that pretty stupid and annoying.
 
2012-08-30 09:49:19 AM  
I don't have it any more but I used to have a bmw and the only problem I ever had was when the brake pads went, the roters had to be replaced too. It was about a grand to replace each time, and they had to be replaced 3 or 4 times in 100,000 miles.

/other than that, great car
//5 speed 325 ci, 2004
///traded it in for a 2011 ford fusion
////dont know what I was thinking
 
2012-08-30 09:49:28 AM  

Cinaed: My favorite experience with a BMW has, to date, been seeing dozens of them abandoned on roads during a snow storm while my little POS Echo puttered on by.


All of the i models are rear wheel drive, so I can see where they would be dangerous as hell in a snowstorm without chains.
 
2012-08-30 09:51:09 AM  
I'd say this was another one of those "service revenue" guarantees.

The seal around the trunk is designed to have a certain life. This is designed so that the poor sap who is using the car after 100,000 miles will still have to go to BMW to get it serviced.
 
2012-08-30 09:51:45 AM  

mainstreet62: impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.

Mercedes electrical engineers are no better. I can't say anything about Audi, I've never owned one.


VW has similar problems. Germans just don't get electrics.
 
2012-08-30 09:52:26 AM  
The common wisdom among mechanics is that the Germans don't understand electronics/electrical systems AT ALL, but are mechanical geniuses.

Here are the rankings:

Japanese cars - good mechanics, great electronics/electrical
German cars - great mechanics, bad electronics/electrical
US cars - okay mechanics, okay electronics/electrical
British cars - bad mechanics, bad electronics/electrical...uh...

There is a reason that Japanese cars are so dominant.
 
2012-08-30 09:53:33 AM  

mainstreet62: impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.

Mercedes electrical engineers are no better. I can't say anything about Audi, I've never owned one.


Did they start getting their electrical gear from Lucas?
 
2012-08-30 09:58:41 AM  

Mad_Radhu: Cinaed: My favorite experience with a BMW has, to date, been seeing dozens of them abandoned on roads during a snow storm while my little POS Echo puttered on by.

All of the i models are rear wheel drive, so I can see where they would be dangerous as hell in a snowstorm without chains.


I had a rear wheel drive manual 2009 Mercedes C230 - I used all season tires through a Canadian winter, never had one problem through snow or ice. I will assert though, having a manual transmission does make the difference when it comes to winter handling.
 
2012-08-30 09:58:52 AM  
Fun anecdote: I've got a BMW with 80k miles on it that has never needed any service beyond maintenance items.

Wait a minute, that's wrong: I had to replace an O2 sensor once, cost me about $100 and 20 minutes including driving to the auto parts store.

My Honda has been more a maintenance headache than our BMW.
 
2012-08-30 10:00:29 AM  

bangmaid: I don't have it any more but I used to have a bmw and the only problem I ever had was when the brake pads went, the roters had to be replaced too. It was about a grand to replace each time, and they had to be replaced 3 or 4 times in 100,000 miles.

/other than that, great car
//5 speed 325 ci, 2004
///traded it in for a 2011 ford fusion
////dont know what I was thinking


i had a 2001 5-speed 325i (same type - the E46). amazing car. traded it in on a 2011 6-speed 328i. also amazing. driving a 3-series pretty much ruined every other car for me. and as for reliability, apart from replacing my water pump at 140,000 and a few other small odds and ends, my old 325 was bulletproof. i'm 25,000 miles into my new one, and it hasn't had a single issue yet.

/you must've been driving like a maniac to have to replace your brakes 3 or 4 times in 100k miles!
 
2012-08-30 10:05:34 AM  

bangmaid: I don't have it any more but I used to have a bmw and the only problem I ever had was when the brake pads went, the roters had to be replaced too. It was about a grand to replace each time, and they had to be replaced 3 or 4 times in 100,000 miles.

/other than that, great car
//5 speed 325 ci, 2004
///traded it in for a 2011 ford fusion
////dont know what I was thinking


That wasn't a problem with the car - that was a problem with either you or the guy who sold you the brake pads. Pads only chew into rotors if a) you don't replace them soon enough, or b) they are a high-performance compound. Note: you don't need rotor-eating ceramic pads on a BMW (or any car) unless you're tracking the thing. Semi-metallic (organic) pads are good enough.



Mad_Radhu: Cinaed: My favorite experience with a BMW has, to date, been seeing dozens of them abandoned on roads during a snow storm while my little POS Echo puttered on by.

All of the i models are rear wheel drive, so I can see where they would be dangerous as hell in a snowstorm without chains.


RWD dangerous in a snowstorm you say?

Pish posh! S2000 wearing summer sport shoes, no chains, driving 25 miles with altitude changes over snow and ice.

Granted, I changed over to my snow tires the next day, but it's more about driver than drivetrain. FWD cars are actually worse in bad weather than RWD - too front-heavy, causes them to push right off the road, and the front wheels have to perform double-duty as both power and steering, resulting in less grip available for either job. Remember: any given tire has only a certain amount of grip available to be used for acceleration, braking, and cornering. Use that grip for one thing, and there's less grip available for others. A RWD car can drive and turn at the same time without sacrificing grip - a FWD car cannot. FWD automatically gives you less grip and less control than RWD.

/AWD for the win
 
2012-08-30 10:07:03 AM  

bangmaid: ///traded it in for a 2011 ford fusion
////dont know what I was thinking


trade the fusion in on another late-model manual bimmer!
 
2012-08-30 10:11:55 AM  

impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.


FTFY

/ME
 
2012-08-30 10:16:33 AM  
Crazy Ivan.
 
2012-08-30 10:20:35 AM  
Throughout the years I've owned both Mercedes and Audi vehicles, as well as some American cars and I don't seem to have the electrical problems people keep complaining about with German cars.

My first Mercedes was gotten rid of at 220,000 miles and the engine was bulletproof when I sold it. Only in the last 5 thousand miles, or so, did everything else really start to go.

My second Mercedes went 70K miles before I got rid of it and I had no problems at all with any in that car.

The Audi cars I can't really speak too just yet other than the fact they are excellently built. This past March my 2011 Audi pretty much saved my life when I hit near on at about 50mph by a Ford Taurus. The Taurus was obliterated and my Audi was destroyed but looked a damn sight better. I walked away from that crash. I had less than 10K miles on that car so it's unfair for me to say if the electrical is good or not. Until that point the car performed perfectly.

I now have a 2012 Audi with just under 8K miles and it is also performing as it should.

Truthfully the only problems I've ever had were with American cars, namely GM (Chevy) and Chrysler (Jeep). After 30K miles or so the bills started getting crazy.

I've never had a BMW despite having several relatives in Germany who have worked for them. They make beautiful cars but I cannot speak to their quality. I have to imagine when you're paying $50k+ for a car it should be very reliable and come with an excellent warranty!
 
2012-08-30 10:31:38 AM  
Bad engineering, for sure. Not sure why you;d want to put so much in the trunk of the car, anyway.... wiring harnesses are a mess to deal with in assembly and a major failure point. Most cars I've worked (professionally, as an engineer) have most of the systems contained to the pre-assembled components (like the dash) for final assembly. General rule of thumb, never make a wiring harness more than 3ft if you don't need to.

That BMW would be a major pain on the assembly line.

Also, WTF is the deal with the controller's enclosure? In an American car, that would be encased by a 1lb block of aluminum and rubber-booted connectors. You could submerse it down to 200ft underwater before it was an issue; BMW's enclosure looks like you could short it out with a sneeze.
 
2012-08-30 10:39:30 AM  
cyclingchat.co.uk

BMW?  Rubbish.
 
2012-08-30 10:39:33 AM  
Stupid Russian is stupid.

/The creep like a blight across the land.
 
2012-08-30 10:40:38 AM  

mainstreet62: impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.

Mercedes electrical engineers are no better. I can't say anything about Audi, I've never owned one.


As Audi is owned by VW, the electrical work probably makes the English look like the Japanese.

I'd love to have an A1 or one the new Mercedes A-classes. I'm sure they're fun to drive. But the Eurotrash aren't interested in bringing them to the states, and I wouldn't trust the electrical work.

I've owned American and Japanese cars. With the exception of the AC in my old Civic (died ~84k miles, which seems fairly common for Civics of that period), they've all been rock-solid. I've never known anybody who owned a German car who didn't run into problems.
 
2012-08-30 10:48:30 AM  

LesserEvil: In an American car, that would be encased by a 1lb block of aluminum and rubber-booted connectors. You could submerse it down to 200ft underwater before it was an issue; BMW's enclosure looks like you could short it out with a sneeze.


And that's why I love my GM trucks. They're built for a purpose, yet seem to have let engineers have 200 'what if's' tested for, just to be sure. "Well, part 201 failed the 'panicked woman/rainstorm/electrical short/on a 10 degree grade/in mud/with 1000 pounds in the bed' test' so here's part 202." I don't get that warm fuzzy feeling from the other manufacturers.

/though I would still love to try a German some day
 
2012-08-30 10:50:08 AM  

Lost Thought 00: mainstreet62: impaler: Yeah, BMW electrical engineers seem to be complete idiots.

Mercedes electrical engineers are no better. I can't say anything about Audi, I've never owned one.

VW has similar problems. Germans just don't get electrics.


VW used to (still does?) wire everything in serial - so when one component has a problem, it takes out a whole set. German engineering and Mexican assembly. You get 5 good years from a VW, then you're going to be shelling out some costly repairs.

/from mine and others' experiences
 
2012-08-30 10:50:57 AM  
I had a 2004 325i. The housing for the tail lights was garbage and I guess they were eventually recalled for that reason. I got my recall letter a few months after I traded it in. It was fun to drive though.
 
2012-08-30 11:03:36 AM  
Dat's rite Roman - it's your fawlt yoo fockeen geediot
 
2012-08-30 11:13:19 AM  
er, that's the old 5-series.

FenixStorm1: I had a rear wheel drive manual 2009 Mercedes C230 - I used all season tires through a Canadian winter, never had one problem through snow or ice. I will assert though, having a manual transmission does make the difference when it comes to winter handling.


Actually having winter tires makes all the difference. I'd bet 20 that all the stranded BMWs the guy was talking about had summer performance tires because the owners didn't know any better... then it is indeed dangerous for them to be out there.
 
2012-08-30 11:14:50 AM  

obeymatt: I had a 2004 325i. The housing for the tail lights was garbage and I guess they were eventually recalled for that reason. I got my recall letter a few months after I traded it in. It was fun to drive though.


ah, yes, i do remember having that attended to at some point. a grounding issue, as i recall.
 
2012-08-30 11:21:40 AM  

Mad_Radhu: Cinaed: My favorite experience with a BMW has, to date, been seeing dozens of them abandoned on roads during a snow storm while my little POS Echo puttered on by.

All of the i models are rear wheel drive, so I can see where they would be dangerous as hell in a snowstorm without chains.


My 318is is also RWD, and a set of all-weather tires is all I've ever really needed. Put a hundred pounds in the trunk when it's icy, and it's stable as a rock. It's the driver, not the car. Never spun out, never skidded except small bits in very bad ice, no issues.

The piece I hate is how they put in the computer behind the firewall. The drain is crap, easily clogs with a leaf or dirt, and I flooded mine going through a car wash once. I redrilled the drain to widen it, since then there have been no issues.

/1993 318is
/212,000 miles
 
2012-08-30 11:25:27 AM  

Sword and Shield: My 318is is also RWD, and a set of all-weather tires is all I've ever really needed. Put a hundred pounds in the trunk when it's icy, and it's stable as a rock. It's the driver, not the car. Never spun out, never skidded except small bits in very bad ice, no issues.


snow tires are a must. and that's what they do in europe. we tend to be cheap bastards here and try to get away with "all-season" tires. think about it this way: most cops drive (or used to drive) RWD crown vics. do they stop driving in the winter? hell no, the put on snow tires.
 
2012-08-30 11:27:37 AM  
Another E46 owner chiming in. Bought used maintenance has been next to nothing. Better than the Mazda I used to drive that went through bearings, calipers, and ball joints like they were made from butter.

Kuroshin: bangmaid: I don't have it any more but I used to have a bmw and the only problem I ever had was when the brake pads went, the roters had to be replaced too. It was about a grand to replace each time, and they had to be replaced 3 or 4 times in 100,000 miles.

/other than that, great car
//5 speed 325 ci, 2004
///traded it in for a 2011 ford fusion
////dont know what I was thinking

That wasn't a problem with the car - that was a problem with either you or the guy who sold you the brake pads. Pads only chew into rotors if a) you don't replace them soon enough, or b) they are a high-performance compound. Note: you don't need rotor-eating ceramic pads on a BMW (or any car) unless you're tracking the thing. Semi-metallic (organic) pads are good enough.


BMW OEM pads and rotors are designed so that both wear down. The rotors don't have a lot of extra metal on them (saves weight) and the tolerances for allowable wear are tight so it's suggested that rotors and pads be changed at the same time. If you're not driving hard you can usually go through 2 sets of pads before changing the rotor but if you stick with OEM parts the rotors will need to be changed relatively frequently.
 
2012-08-30 12:04:50 PM  

FlashHarry: Sword and Shield: My 318is is also RWD, and a set of all-weather tires is all I've ever really needed. Put a hundred pounds in the trunk when it's icy, and it's stable as a rock. It's the driver, not the car. Never spun out, never skidded except small bits in very bad ice, no issues.

snow tires are a must. and that's what they do in europe. we tend to be cheap bastards here and try to get away with "all-season" tires. think about it this way: most cops drive (or used to drive) RWD crown vics. do they stop driving in the winter? hell no, the put on snow tires.


There's some quite good all seasons out there now, and they can be plenty good enough for most snow events. However, the road is filled with cheap bastards who either bought crappy Chinese "tires" with practically no capability in any condition, don't understand those summer tires are a poor choice under 40 degrees F, or wore the tires down to the wear bars but won't buy new ones until the belts are showing.

However, ICE is something else entirely, and that's when winter tires really come into their own. A good quality set of winters can get even a RWD car around on sheet ice without much trouble. AWD + winter tires, and if you have enough ground clearance to get over however much crap is out there, you'll get anywhere you need to go whenever you want to get there.
 
2012-08-30 12:10:48 PM  

CrowdSceneExtra: BMW OEM pads and rotors are designed so that both wear down. The rotors don't have a lot of extra metal on them (saves weight) and the tolerances for allowable wear are tight so it's suggested that rotors and pads be changed at the same time. If you're not driving hard you can usually go through 2 sets of pads before changing the rotor but if you stick with OEM parts the rotors will need to be changed relatively frequently.


It's not so much that they're designed to wear down, they just don't have a lot of "meat" on the rotor that can go down before it is out of spec. As with any newer vehicle there just isn't a whole lot of tolerance in how far down a rotor can go due to safety spec as well as the spec of how far out the piston on the caliper can travel. If he's paying $1000 a brake job then he's obviously not doing the work himself and probably being taken to the cleaners and told he needs new calipers as well and maybe the brake hoses along with it.

/Buying your own rotors should cost you no more than $100 each for top quality
//Buying your own pads shouldn't cost more than $75 for top quality (set for the front)
///Having a mechanic that won't rip you off...Priceless
 
2012-08-30 12:14:33 PM  

akula: There's some quite good all seasons out there now


true. the best of which is probably the nokian WR G2, which i use as a winter tire, but is rated as "all season." it's the only all-season tire i'm aware of that carries the snowflake winter symbol that allows its use on winter tire-only roads in canada and elsewhere. i used them on my old 325i and they were great in the snow.
 
2012-08-30 12:17:32 PM  

akula: There's some quite good all seasons out there now, and they can be plenty good enough for most snow events. However, the road is filled with cheap bastards who either bought crappy Chinese "tires" with practically no capability in any condition, don't understand those summer tires are a poor choice under 40 degrees F, or wore the tires down to the wear bars but won't buy new ones until the belts are showing.

However, ICE is something else entirely, and that's when winter tires really come into their own. A good quality set of winters can get even a RWD car around on sheet ice without much trouble. AWD + winter tires, and if you have enough ground clearance to get over however much crap is out there, you'll get anywhere you need to go whenever you want to get there.


Tires are NO substitute for crappy driving ability. If you don't know how to drive in a snowstorm people should just stay off the road and call in to work. Having lived in northern wisconsin and northern minnesota most of my life, nothing annoys me more than people who don't know how to drive in inclimate weather. The first snowfall of winter is the downfall for many people who moved to northern states in the summer and end up crashing or sliding into a ditch. I had a co-worker ask me once how to remove the ice off her windshield because she never had to deal with it in California. I had to SHOW her how to scrape ice off...needless to say I let her drive in front of me out of the parking lot.

/end rant
 
2012-08-30 12:18:39 PM  
My major complaint about BMWs is their inability to get me to the gym in 26 minutes.
 
2012-08-30 12:52:10 PM  

Mad_Radhu: Cinaed: My favorite experience with a BMW has, to date, been seeing dozens of them abandoned on roads during a snow storm while my little POS Echo puttered on by.

All of the i models are rear wheel drive, so I can see where they would be dangerous as hell in a snowstorm without chains.


Everyone -- I mean everyone -- in northern Europe with a BMW (or Benz) has two (2) sets of tires -- one summer, one winter. 'Merica? Give us the lowest profile and highest speed rating...wheeeee! in a half-inch of slush.
 
2012-08-30 12:54:16 PM  
Eating popcorn

//2001 Honda Civic - 241000 and going...
 
2012-08-30 12:59:50 PM  

stuhayes2010: Is water in the trunk of your vehicle that never goes off road (not even the SUVs) a common problem?


Long version:
open the trunk while it's raining
put a beer cooler in the trunk
gut a lawyer in the trunk
put wet luggage in the trunk

Short version:
shiat happens
 
2012-08-30 01:04:30 PM  

Sachlpch: Tires are NO substitute for crappy driving ability.


Of course not. I didn't say otherwise.

I will, however, maintain that tires are a very important component of a vehicle's ability. They're the only parts that actually touch the ground, mind you- all accelerating, braking, and turning is done through those four contact patches.

Quality tires will do more with those contact patches; the worse the conditions the more they show their worth. Great drivers will be able to get a great deal out of them. Average drivers will be able to make it through the weather event to their destination in a safer manner. Dickhead drivers will still be watching everybody else from the ditch because you can take some folks to school, give them books, and they'll just eat the crayons no matter how much help you give them.

If you want to stack the deck in your favor as much as possible for winter conditions, AWD and winter tires is the way to do it. Yeah, a good driver can do quite a bit with less, but I prefer to have every advantage I can score, and they've come in quite handy more than once.
 
2012-08-30 01:10:02 PM  
Had to replace the strip at the base of my 2002 330i as they become brittle and loose over time, admitting water directly to the fuse box under the glove compartment. Way to go, Fritz!

Otherwise it's a great car.
 
2012-08-30 01:12:07 PM  
Just bought me this in June:

sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net

The new 302 Coyote Engine is a freaking beast, 420 HP.
 
2012-08-30 02:05:31 PM  
My old Civic had the pooling problem because of the cabin vents somewhere above the rear tires. The rear quarter panels were replaced once but the second time I said screw it and bought a new car.

It was 15 years old.
 
2012-08-30 02:28:02 PM  
I have a 2003 BMW 325i. I bought it last year from a snowbird... it had 11,000 mile on it. I've put about 10k on it since then and I'm starting to worry. Sure, I had to replace the stock tires for safety reasons, but some items are absurd. The rear passanger window broke out of the track. $250 to fix. The brakes went out after 20,000 miles. I upgraded and did the work myself, but it cost around $500 for the parts. The windsheild washer doesn't spray. Worst yet, the turn signal lamp needs to be replaced as moisture is getting in it and the brake ABS sensor is throwing a code, again, due to moisture in it.

Good thing I live in a desert, BMWs just were not designed to get wet. Ever.
 
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