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Caruso

Any 525iX Owners?

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Does anyone have any ownership experience of a BMW525iX?

I'm interested to know how easy it is to run one of these. Are parts available? Is expertise available?

What are they like to drive?

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There are a few on here and i had one for a bit.

They ride a bit higher than a regular e34 and drive quite well obviously they're heavier against the equivilent 2wd car and a bit jucier- they don't feel 4wd particularly i didn't think.

Parts are the issue IMO as they are very different underneath at the front to any other e34- its a rack and pinion set up rather than a steering box but this means there is no parts interchanagbility with any other model so things like brake discs, calipers, track rod ends are unique. The back end is standard fayre.

Obviously you have the 4wd bits front diff, transfer box, sump (one drive shaft gies through it!) and again they're unique to the iX.

I have no reason to think they are inherently unreliable but i sold mine as i worried that being BMW only for many parts one big failure would leave me with a chunk of scrap - though had any of the 4wd bits gone west i would have considered putting in a 2wd box and having a rack and pinion e34!

Had i kept mine i would have bought a scrapper and stock piled the unique bits just in case!

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Hi Caruso,

I am an iX owner, auto tourer, and I love it. Great car to drive, especially in the wet.

Re getting parts, I have just been doing what I call a midlife-upgrade to mine so I have had to source many parts, availability has not been a problem as parts have come either from scrappers, various non-OE suppliers or BMW. Re price, some parts are expensive and BMW only, the front shocks being the main one, while other parts you can get for a lot less than the BMW price.

Re expertise, my specialism is in sourcing parts and so am happy to help there. Re the mechanics, they are straight forward and any decent mechanic should be able to repair and service the car (mine has been done by a mechanic who goes drag racing in his spare time, knows what he is doing and just got the job done with no dramas, a job which involved replacing the front suspension, steering, brakes, gaiters and a whole lot more). Likewise with bodywork, any good bodyshop should be able to help you out.

Steven C, another forum member and I are also putting together a iX owner's document, which will hopefully help you understand more about what you have bought, key things to look out for and what needs to be done to keep it going. We will get it done sometime soon.

What's your status re ownership, have you bought or are you looking?

Hope this helps,

Geoff

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^ I didn't mean to suggest that they where especially hard to look after or you couldn't get parts nor that they are especially problematic only that as an ownership proposition it's going to be potentially more difficult than a 2wd on the basis of numbers built. Not a bad car by any means.

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Duncan,

I like your suggestion that if the front goes, just convert it to a 2wd. Hadn't thought of that before. Not sure the traction control in the gearbox and rear diff would like that though.

Re ownership proposition, I love a challenge and owning an iX means you have to be that bit more resourceful. We owners are helped by the fact that there are a relatively high number of SORN to running cars so finding 4WD parts when needed is relatively easy once you know where to look. If I couldn't find something in the UK, my first port of call would be www.ebay.de where most of the 4WD drive components are regularly listed.

Geoff

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I think the gear box is thesame but with a differnet out put - ie the iX has a transfer box on the back and a shorter prop but in any case i thought just drop in a 2wd box and prop as the back end is the same and these parts would be 10-a-penny.

The ebay the ix bits off! Obviously it would be another one down but it was a thought for the budget conscious!

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My 525iX is more comfortable that my e30, does similar mpg to a rwd 520i I borrowed and has enough toys to play with (and is relatively easy to add more). It has rack and pinon steering = no tightning of stering box nuts etc an it is rear wheel drive basis so drives like a BMW should.

Regarding 525iX parts - Don't be scared or put off !

I navigate around www.bmwfans.info and get part numbers.

On www.bmwfans.info you can click on the part number and it brings up the other vehicles that use the same part and then if this is the case I contact Euro car pars / GSF / BMW parts depatment / Motormec / BM Mini for new parts. An example is the front driveshaft nut - its the same one the e36 uses on its rear driveshaft.

For second hand parts I try the breakers on here / forums / ebay / bmw specialists (quarry motors / FAB direct) / breakeryard.com / 247spares.co.uk. The 525iX rear drive shaft is standard e34.

I don't think there is such a thing as BMW dealer only part as you can give part numbers to Motormec and BM mini etc ;-)

One thing I found is that the local BMW parts department is not all ways the most expensive!

Like Geoff (Donigov) said ebay.de can be used - most German speak good english / there are loads of on line translators about if not and they are normally willing to ship items!

I am part way through a second draft of a definitive iX guide that Geoff is checking over for me. When its ready I'll post it on here.

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Thanks for all the replies. I've recently bought a 540i Touring, so not imminently in the market. But I do have a penchant for rare and unusual cars - my previous car was a Renault Avantime. Also I've got a big soft spot for the E34, especially a touring with twin sunroofs.

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Quite simply my 525iX Touring as proven to be the most reliable, bulletproof car I have ever owned. It cost me £600 and it's already paid me back in plain old damn usefulness. In the time I've had it both of my e39s have fucked up in some way or another, meanwhile the E34 just keeps on going.

A four wheel drive BMW 5 Series for £600. Top value.

I'm never going to sell it, it's like a faithful old dog.

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Quite simply my 525iX Touring as proven to be the most reliable, bulletproof car I have ever owned. It cost me £600 and it's already paid me back in plain old damn usefulness. In the time I've had it both of my e39s have fucked up in some way or another, meanwhile the E34 just keeps on going.

A four wheel drive BMW 5 Series for £600. Top value.

I'm never going to sell it, it's like a faithful old dog.

Finding one appears to be the difficult bit then!

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just bought a manual touring 4wd estate and had one or two jobs to do, but just wanted to say I found the above tips and suggestions for bits really useful as and when I undoubtedly will be needing them, so thank you

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just bought a manual touring 4wd estate and had one or two jobs to do, but just wanted to say I found the above tips and suggestions for bits really useful as and when I undoubtedly will be needing them, so thank you

Pics please, and a rundown of the spec :)

Edited by sharkfan

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