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  #1  
Old 05-08-2017, 11:14 AM
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Which X5?

If you're going to buy an X5, e53 or e70 [wanting to stay within a budget of let's say 15k] what model year, equipment, and why? [I own an e39 m62 non vanos]
Mechanically inclined but know when I'm in over my head...
TIA!

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Old 05-08-2017, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E39LV View Post
If you're going to buy an X5, e53 or e70 [wanting to stay within a budget of let's say 15k] what model year, equipment, and why? [I own an e39 m62 non vanos]
Specific examples of different E53's with different mileage on which people will base an opinion will abound here. Outside of those specific examples, I will share some thoughts:

You can easily stay WELL under budget with an m62 E53 and still have plenty of room to maintain or bring it up to your standards. You lose X drive in the non-facelift models. Of course, you'll have the classic NV125 38/62 (or whatever) split but it's not the same as XDrive if this is important to you. This is a solid choice as well since it's a motor you're familiar with.

You'll also be under budget on all but the most exceptional, low mileage N62 4.4's. Like anything with moving parts, these have their own set of reliability issues. They may be unique to N62's, but they're just that- unique when set against another motor's own unique issues.

I loved my '04 i6 E53. Plenty peppy and still a stunner to this beholder's eye. True across pretty much any displacement in NA cars, the i6's run a little lower on power way up in the band as compared to V8s. Some will say that the i6's are more reliable. That may be true to some, but it was not the case in my specific experience. The dealer replaced a 32k motor on my i6. Nothing major- not even a gasket has let go in my 4.8is @ 102k.

The 4.8is N62's are coming way down as well. This year someone on the board was unsuccessful selling one over $14k with ~52k miles. That's a unique example of course like I referenced above. I'd be thrilled to find $13k for mine and I just dropped $7k on it this year. Mine is a longer play across the next 6-7 years, I hope.

Like sizing technical equipment, I advise folks to look at the big options that generally stick with you: Engine, transmission, X Drive vs non, etc. You can find wheels, replace steering wheels, add running boards and other stuff. Getting some of those things is more a challenge now than it once was, but the idea persists: The E53 is the platform. The motor, transmission, and AWD options are the next biggest thing (to me).

The newest of the E53s will be 11 years old this year. Most of them already are or will be 12 years old. Like the E39, you'll need to be vigilant about what history you can find and what to expect based on that history being available or not.

Other than sitting in an E70 and finding it a place I did not wish to spend more time, I don't have experience so I can't offer any opinion.


Best of luck!
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Old 05-08-2017, 11:39 AM
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I would buy a 2005-2006 3.0 with the 6 speed manual and full sport package.

Why? Because it's the best.

It's more fun than an autotragic
It'll leave you with extra cash for repairs
The manual doesn't fail like the autos do
Xdrive is better than the prefacelift version
The m54b30 is relatively cheaper and easier to maintain


If I had to be boring and get one with 2 pedals, I'd get the 4.8is. Any E70 that I'd consider worth buying is out of the 15k budget.
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Old 05-08-2017, 11:42 AM
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IMO, the best model and year is the one that you can find that has the most complete history, passes a PPI in flying colors, and has the least miles on the clock. Condition and cleanliness of interior and engine bay is a telltale sign to me.

Most importantly, it is the one you like best regardless of equipment since no one here has to pay for it and take any of the risk that comes with the purchase of a used vehicle.

It is quite likely you will get more negative than positive input. That is human nature, and, in the case of a forum any input as to specifics is based on 'limited' personal experience and bias usually based on X5 ownership.
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Old 05-08-2017, 11:48 AM
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Great insight! I like the hp on the e39 and wouldn't mind more although I don't have to have it and would take it as a trade-off for something that was pristine low mileage and had all the bells and whistles including right color inside and out. That may be a tall order... I also wonder about the X drive versus the standard e53 set up.
Is it that much better then the standard set up on the e53? It's always better to have something and not need it than to need something and not have it. In the end for me it would be getting caught in a snowstorm on a road trip and wanting to make sure I can still maintain a decent miles per hour to get to my destination, visibility permitting.

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Old 05-08-2017, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E39LV View Post
Great insight! I like the hp on the e39 and wouldn't mind more although I don't have to have it and would take it as a trade-off for something that was pristine low mileage and had all the bells and whistles including right color inside and out. That may be a tall order... I also wonder about the X drive versus the standard e53 set up.
Is it that much better then the standard set up on the e53? It's always better to have something and not need it than to need something and not have it. In the end for me it would be getting caught in a snowstorm on a road trip and wanting to make sure I can still maintain a decent miles per hour to get to my destination, visibility permitting.

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Old 05-08-2017, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
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Why a PM? Forum input is for OP and all following.
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Old 05-08-2017, 12:49 PM
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I don't have experience with X drive. I suspect that if you live in a long Northern winter snow area X drive might be more beneficial because of the variables rather than fixed 60-40 split.

On the other hand, having grown up in Michigan on Lake Michigan where there is plenty of lake effect snow I think getting around on ice and snow is far more dependent on experience and tires.
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Old 05-08-2017, 02:40 PM
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There's so many different variables that could sway a buyer...but my only warning would be to really be careful if you're about to throw money down on the e70 X5 50iX (N63 V8).

All the V8s from the histrionic M60 (Nikisil issue)...forward to the N63N...all have had their issues...but the N63 (2010-2013??) seems to really be troublesome and for me...has fallen into the category like the M60...be VERY careful if considering the purchase of one....especially since their prices are dropping due to their bad press. Make sure you understand what's going on with the 50iX before buying...go in with your eyes wide open.
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Old 05-08-2017, 09:48 PM
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It really comes down to what has been posted many time before, What is your objective for this vehicle?

In my book bigger is better with engines but mine sits under a cover waiting for a clean dry run up and down the roads. Others have daily driver in their mind so starting stopping and cost per mile are LARGE factors.

The best high-end European older car is one where the previous owner was a caretaker of the vehicle and saw his ownership as a long term investment. Spent what was necessary to keep all systems operational and the vehicle "clean as a pin". This type of owner has records and will openly share his/her experience of ownership, buy from this type and run from all the others. The short term owners who ran them hard and then moved on to the next shiny item have moved on years ago. Corner used car lots where last year they were selling pack animals are Bottom Feeders trying to get the final and last sale from 150K+ mile cars. RUN AWAY as they are mostly LIARS who just happen to be selling cars.

Bottom line: Buy the best car you can find as "Price driven" buyers often discover why it was so cheap after the sale. The first round of service needs often overwhelm new owners, go in with your eyes wide open and have a PPI done regardless of sellers' objections/statements.

At this point in time, DIY will be your only option for smiles per mile, value, return on investment, and happy wife/life/whatever....
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Last edited by StephenVA; 05-08-2017 at 09:56 PM.
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