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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi everyone,

While I agree that we shouldnt forget the issue by any means, I do think we should take the time to remember what we have forgotten. There have to be a ton of S85s on this forum with higher miles that have not yet had a bearing issue. Whenever I get paranoid about my 47K mile 08, I look for M5's for sale and I am releaved to see many with over 80K miles out there for grabs. Plenty of those are 06's as well.


So with that being said... What year is your M5 and how many miles do you have?
 

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I like this post. Hopefully this will end some of the paranoia as folks with higher miles chime in. I'm at 45k with my original bearings, clutch, SMG pump, VANOS, and always use Castrol 10W60 oil.

Uh oh....maybe I should be paranoid like many others here since I'm approaching that dreaded 50k mark. :haha:
 

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Just passed 80k miles on my MY2008 (build date 12/2007) M5. Always use TWS 10W-60. Despite my Blackstone reports looking clean, I still plan to get my rod bearings changed out after my current 5k oil interval is up just for peace of mind (car will be at about 84k miles at that point).

My Blackstone reports are here
 

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I remember reading that there were at least a couple of folks who were on this board who surpassed the 200k marker without ever changing their rod bearings and didn't do any major repairs other than clutches. I believe it all depends on how you treat your car and how religious you are with doing the proper maintenance as to whether these types of problems will rear their ugly heads. People who constantly beat on their cars are much more likely to have issues than the ones who occasionally romp the go pedal. That pretty much goes for all cars, not just M5's.
 

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I remember reading that there were at least a couple of folks who were on this board who surpassed the 200k marker without ever changing their rod bearings and didn't do any major repairs other than clutches. I believe it all depends on how you treat your car and how religious you are with doing the proper maintenance as to whether these types of problems will rear their ugly heads. People who constantly beat on their cars are much more likely to have issues than the ones who occasionally romp the go pedal. That pretty much goes for all cars, not just M5's.
I heard multiple stories here on the board of people babying their car and having rod bearings fail. I think there has been numerous engineering discussions about tolerances in S85 and the general consensus was that BMW cocked up. They made the tolerances super small to extract their 500hp figure, because that was a business requirement, but at the same time used a very thick oil. The combination proved rather poor as people had engine failures due to rod bearings at 40k miles or under. And with 40k miles the car is still considered relatively new.

BMW didn't care about the issue, because they got the numbers they wanted, and they knew that in most cases the issue would come up at higher mileages when the car is out of the warranty.

Because every engine is a little different, I suspect the reason some people didn't have the rod bearing issue at the same time as others, is due to slight differences in the crank position, and slight variation in the bearing tolerances. Even a very small amount counts not to eat up the bearing as much. But there still is a fundamental mechanical issue in the design of S85, and BMW knew about it.
 

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I heard multiple stories here on the board of people babying their car and having rod bearings fail. I think there has been numerous engineering discussions about tolerances in S85 and the general consensus was that BMW cocked up. They made the tolerances super small to extract their 500hp figure, because that was a business requirement, but at the same time used a very thick oil. The combination proved rather poor as people had engine failures due to rod bearings at 40k miles or under. And with 40k miles the car is still considered relatively new.

BMW didn't care about the issue, because they got the numbers they wanted, and they knew that in most cases the issue would come up at higher mileages when the car is out of the warranty.

Because every engine is a little different, I suspect the reason some people didn't have the rod bearing issue at the same time as others, is due to slight differences in the crank position, and slight variation in the bearing tolerances. Even a very small amount counts not to eat up the bearing as much. But there still is a fundamental mechanical issue in the design of S85, and BMW knew about it.
Where do you people come up with this stuff? Do you guys have insider knowledge of the workings of BMW and their corporate executives? Perhaps you've been invited to their board meetings and know what's going on behind the scenes that doesn't get shared due to possible public outcry? If so, perhaps you'd like to share your sources.

This is the kind of stuff I was talking about earlier. Somebody gets a hair up their ***** because they aren't happy that something went wrong with their car. Then they start making up excuses as to "what probably happened" behind the scenes at BMW....then other board members glom onto their theory and start spreading the false rumors. Herd mentality at it's very worst.
 

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07 SMG, 2-owner, 58k miles, 10w-60 all its life, the only thing replaced was the windshield fluid pump.
 

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Where do you people come up with this stuff? Do you guys have insider knowledge of the workings of BMW and their corporate executives? Perhaps you've been invited to their board meetings and know what's going on behind the scenes that doesn't get shared due to possible public outcry? If so, perhaps you'd like to share your sources.

This is the kind of stuff I was talking about earlier. Somebody gets a hair up their ***** because they aren't happy that something went wrong with their car. Then they start making up excuses as to "what probably happened" behind the scenes at BMW....then other board members glom onto their theory and start spreading the false rumors. Herd mentality at it's very worst.
I remember reading in depth about the issue a few months ago and right now I don't have a lot of URL's on hand, but here is one you can definitely use. It primarily focuses on the S65 motor, but there is also some info to digest about our S85's. And the same principles that they discuss apply to our engines as well. Official S65 Bearing Specification/Clearance Wiki

If you'd like I can spend time and try to find more URL's I was reading a few months back, but I am kind of hoping it will not come to that.

I think the paranoia is actually coming from people who don't understand the technical aspects of how this engine works, and they immediately think there is nothing to talk about. I think the percentage of people who had engine failures due to bearings already speaks for itself.
 

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I purchased my car with a new long block at 73K. Apparently, a bearing failure was a part of the reason BMW replaced the engine. I have only put about 7K on the new engine, so I don't have to worry for a long time.
 

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I remember reading in depth about the issue a few months ago and right now I don't have a lot of URL's on hand, but here is one you can definitely use. It primarily focuses on the S65 motor, but there is also some info to digest about our S85's. And the same principles that they discuss apply to our engines as well. Official S65 Bearing Specification/Clearance Wiki

If you'd like I can spend time and try to find more URL's I was reading a few months back, but I am kind of hoping it will not come to that.

I think the paranoia is actually coming from people who don't understand the technical aspects of how this engine works, and they immediately think there is nothing to talk about. I think the percentage of people who had engine failures due to bearings already speaks for itself.
I have no doubt that you have read lots of threads on here regarding the "poor design" of the rod bearings and the unusually tight clearances. Rod bearings have been the flavor of the last year since a couple of folks ran into engine failures that were blamed on the rod bearings. Then other mechanically inclined folks began opening up their engines and seeing that their bearings had lots of wear. Then all of the conjecture began about why they had this wear, and folks began coming up with the conclusion that BMW screwed up by making the clearances too tight and were using too heavy of a motor oil. And then folks said that BMW did this on purpose so that the engines would fail....so customers out of warranty would have no choice but to pay for a very costly repair or buy a new BMW. Before this, all the rage was about SMG pump failures.

All of this is utter nonsense. This rod bearing paranoia is a relatively recent thing. The E85 has been out for 10 years now...and the percentage of engine failures due to rod bearings I'm sure is extremely low. If it were a major issue, BMW would have changed the design and done a major recall at some point. Guess what? The design stayed exactly the same for all 6 years of production and no recalls were ever issued. I'm not even sure if a TSB was ever issued to address this issue. The majority of the folks who've actually had engine failure due to rod bearings I'm sure didn't follow proper warm-up procedures, didn't change their oil enough, and beat the crap out of their cars. Think about it....this is a car enthusiast board where most people are modding their cars and are talking about how hard they can drive them.

This continues to get to my point of fear mongering. If folks are so freaked out by the poor design and unreliability of their E85 engines, then why do they continue to drive their cars? Why not get something more reliable that performs even better, like a newer CTS-V?

I think folks here like piling onto these discussions and perpetuating this BS because that's what forums are good for. This place is very good when it comes to helping others gain knowledge of their cars from folks who've owned them a long time, doing their own repairs, diagnosing well known minor problems, and building online friendships with others who share their passion of these cars. But it's also a place where some folks can be completely closed minded and are not open to new ideas or common sense in general.
 

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JUST purchased an 08 M5 with 78k miles 3 days ago. Coming from and e60 550i and before that a nightmarish e60 545i so I know plenty about preventative maintenance. After my next oil change I'll get BS report and more than likely change them out...
 

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63,000 on original engine, bearings were fine and blackstone report was good. Cracked piston, will take a look at the crank when I have time to strip it down.
 

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. But it's also a place where some folks can be completely closed minded and are not open to new ideas or common sense in general.
Isn't that, kind of... exactly what you are doing? isn't it entirely possible that there is a design flaw with the bearings? I mean, there are quite a few members that have removed the bearing and found quite a but of premature wear, as you stated. On second thought, wouldn't it also be close minded to think that CAI are "snakeoil" just because you read that on another forum? There seems to be a lot of evidence in the form of R&D by the guys over at Evolve that prove quite the contrary to your statements...

You seem like a smart enough guy, doesn't it seem a bit hypocritical to make vast generalizations about the forum and its members?
 

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Isn't that, kind of... exactly what you are doing? isn't it entirely possible that there is a design flaw with the bearings? I mean, there are quite a few members that have removed the bearing and found quite a but of premature wear, as you stated. On second thought, wouldn't it also be close minded to think that CAI are "snakeoil" just because you read that on another forum? There seems to be a lot of evidence in the form of R&D by the guys over at Evolve that prove quite the contrary to your statements...

You seem like a smart enough guy, doesn't it seem a bit hypocritical to make vast generalizations about the forum and its members?
Wear on the bearings doesn't mean that they are going to fail. All engines that have been in use for any amount of time will show some bearing wear, no matter how large the clearances are. People are assuming that bearings showing signs of wear are going to fail. This is certainly not the case. If you don't follow proper warm up procedures, don't change your oil every 5-8k miles, beat the crap out of your car on a regular basis, and don't have a warranty, then you might have more reason for concern regarding engine failure due to bearing wear and may want to take pre-emptive action in addressing this. But for most folks who take good care of their cars and are not abusers, they likely have nothing to worry about, even with high mileage.

Regarding CAI's, I was directly involved in the testing of these when I had my SRT8. I know all about the claims of manufactures regarding power gains, and what the actual power numbers were. The guys selling the Evolve intakes obviously did R&D in developing them. But anybody installing them need to be clear that they aren't there to produce power. They are made for aesthetics and sound, not power....just like all after-market CAI's on well designed high performance cars, like the M5. Any power gains are going to be extremely minimal and are not worth the price of admission based on power numbers alone.

My "generalizations" were regarding "some" members of this board, not all. I know that there are many members who don't buy into the hyperbole that other members are spreading. It's just that the issues get perpetuated by a few and then it seems to become the norm that that there are problems with the design of these systems because the discussion snowballs and many threads are created to address something that really wasn't an issue in the first place.
 

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If the oil is too thick, then why am I paying $15 a liter on my brand new engine. If you guys have some insight on a better viscosity for our engines, please tell me now.
 

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I have no doubt that you have read lots of threads on here regarding the "poor design" of the rod bearings and the unusually tight clearances. Rod bearings have been the flavor of the last year since a couple of folks ran into engine failures that were blamed on the rod bearings. Then other mechanically inclined folks began opening up their engines and seeing that their bearings had lots of wear. Then all of the conjecture began about why they had this wear, and folks began coming up with the conclusion that BMW screwed up by making the clearances too tight and were using too heavy of a motor oil. And then folks said that BMW did this on purpose so that the engines would fail....so customers out of warranty would have no choice but to pay for a very costly repair or buy a new BMW. Before this, all the rage was about SMG pump failures.
1. People didn't just blame their engine failures on rod bearings. Upon opening up the engine, the rod bearing was the reason for the failure. Engines failing because of worn out bearing is a fact.

2. Nobody said BMW did this on purpose to charge people huge money to replace the engine, because it would then be out of warranty. This point is very illogical since BMW can make more money selling good cars and they need to keep a reputation that their cars are well built, for the brand image and value. Knowing of this issue and purposely not taking care of it could be playing with fire and I am sure BMW would never do that on purpose.

All of this is utter nonsense. This rod bearing paranoia is a relatively recent thing. The E85 has been out for 10 years now...and the percentage of engine failures due to rod bearings I'm sure is extremely low. If it were a major issue, BMW would have changed the design and done a major recall at some point. Guess what? The design stayed exactly the same for all 6 years of production and no recalls were ever issued. I'm not even sure if a TSB was ever issued to address this issue. The majority of the folks who've actually had engine failure due to rod bearings I'm sure didn't follow proper warm-up procedures, didn't change their oil enough, and beat the crap out of their cars. Think about it....this is a car enthusiast board where most people are modding their cars and are talking about how hard they can drive them.
1. Ask Troy Jeup on this board about percentage of S85 engines he had to rebuild due to rod bearings vs any other case. I think that statistic will shed some light. The amount of board members here who had a failure is also pretty alarming, luckily most people were able to get their bearings changed prior to something bad happening.

2. If you actually bothered to read through the URL I've posted in my previous post, you would see that during the lifetime of S85/S65 BMW did change the engine components, and even more specifically, rod bearings. Unless you can provide better argumentation that the guys in that article, I don't see how your point stands.

3. Are you suggesting that driving a Ferrari or a Lambo and tracking it is also "beating the crap out of the car"? You do realize that high-performance vehicles are meant to be driven hard and tracked. E60 M5 is no exception and there are numerous people even here on the board that track their cars. M cars are not meant to sit in a garage and be daily-driven without ever giving them the beans. This is not what they are designed to do. They are high-performance machines.

4. I do agree to your point that we don't know what the owner did with their car until their engine failed and they cried about rod bearings. We don't know exactly what led to that. BUT if you look at the engineering specs for the oil and bone stock clearances for bearings, even experienced engine builders see that those are very tight. Numerous failures at low mileage as a result of worn bearing just proved the point. Again, if you read through the URL I've sent, it shows and proves it very well. I don't think there currently is any other theory that has as much proof attached to it as much as that.

This continues to get to my point of fear mongering. If folks are so freaked out by the poor design and unreliability of their E85 engines, then why do they continue to drive their cars? Why not get something more reliable that performs even better, like a newer CTS-V?
Because S85 M5's are only one of their kind. Plenty of cars out there are performance sedans with 4 doors, but none are 100% like E60 M5.

I think folks here like piling onto these discussions and perpetuating this BS because that's what forums are good for. This place is very good when it comes to helping others gain knowledge of their cars from folks who've owned them a long time, doing their own repairs, diagnosing well known minor problems, and building online friendships with others who share their passion of these cars. But it's also a place where some folks can be completely closed minded and are not open to new ideas or common sense in general.
I am surprised that you consider my argumentation and the information I've provided "BS". I am not trying to get in your face or piss you off, but just point out the obvious that you are not thoroughly educated on the subject as per your comments. I believe that if you were "open minded" such as you define, you yourself would see a very logical point people are making with issues related to rod bearings. Just because you decide to ignore the simple evidence of the issue existing, will not change the world.

If you are so open minded please provide an alternative explanation for the reasons of engine failures due to rod bearing wear. Something that has at least a little bit more concrete evidence to support your theory than just your words about people not warming up their cars and driving them like they stole it.
 

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Late build 06. 73,712mi. Bought car in January with 67,xxxmi. Blackstone came back a little high on iron but they said it could be due to old oil since it was unknown when I bought it. I'm due for another one so we'll see.
 

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Here we go again, just to answer what the OP asked, 02/06 build 45k miles still on oem bearings. Will be changing them at 50k. I'm using LM 10w60 since 31k miles. For the rest of this discussion I ll just sit back and watch :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Again, the point of this post was to cop a feel on how many members OVER 50K miles are on stock bearings.

I'm really curious about how many members are around or over 100k without issue.
 

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ADA, please take the time to re-read my posts about this subject without jumping to conclusions as to the nature of the posts before going into a long diatribe. I believe you have missed many of my points because you didn't take the time to fully understand what I wrote.

BTW, the earlier post was not pointed at you. It was a generalization about several members of this board who perpetuate spreading fear about things that are not an issue with most members cars.
 
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