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My dealer convinced me that the quantity of oil needed when the level was at the lower line was two quarts even though the manual says one quart. He proved this to me by puting one quart in when the level was in between the two marks and it registered just over the top mark. Today when the level was close to the bottom mark I put one quart in and read the level expecting it to read half way and it is almost to the upper level. I will call them tomorrow but does anybody have the facts? Sorry, this is probably a stupid question but my car has just a few hundred miles on it and I have not determined the oil usage yet partly because of this confusion. Also at what point will the low oil level indicator appear?

On a somewhat related matter I heard an interesting story today at the dealership when I went to buy some oil-yes buy, they are still of the opinion that supplemental oil is not covered by BMW. I seems that a fellow M5 owner installed an alarm system that screwed up the warning lights and instruments. When he came in for his 1200 mile service at 4500 miles!! his car was 5 quarts low on oil and he was not warned. He obviously did not check the level manualy either. His complaint when he brought the car in was some knocking noise from the engine. If this car makes it then I guess that all of my obsessing over the oil level is a waste of time!!
 

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Always make sure that you use the procedure described in the manual (idle 1 min., wait 1min.) before measuring. By doing this you ensure that all measurements use the same baseline. Using this method, my observations (through 29.000kms) confirms that the distance between the 2 marks indeed does correspond to 1 litre (which I guess is more or less 1 quart...)

Søren

Btw. my oil consumption seems to be around 1 litre/5000kms now.
 

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I just got my E39 M5 back from the dealer after the 1200 mile service. It took one quart of oil which was the distance between the two marks on the dipstick (i.e. the high/low marks represent one quart/litre, not two). The DME was also reprogrammed (at the dealer, not at BMW NA). All else seems fine.

The dealer has agreed to install the HSM short shift kit for standard labor rates if I buy the kit on my own.
 

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I live in the Czech Republic, and my dealer does not have the oil and told me it would be 2 weeks before they can give my car its first service (I just crossed 2,000 Km). My check oil level message just appeared today, and my oil level is right at the bottom of the indicator range. Is there another oil that I can safely use to top up by 1 liter pending the first service? Alternatively, will I do any damage running the car until the dealer is ready (I expect I will only put on another 500Kms at the most)?

Also, does anyone know what the first service entails? I have read conflicting answers regarding what fluids are changed and what else they may do.

Thanks in advance for your replies!
 

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Ken,

In a pinch you can use a good synthetic in 15/50 weight or even 20/50. It won't cause any harm. I wouldn't run the car a liter low. As for lubrication it shouldn't be a problem except for hard cornering. But the oil could also be cooling the engine, depending on how hard you drive the car and the outside temperature. The distance between the add mark and the full mark on the dipstick is one liter -- slightly more than a U. S. quart.

By the way, last summer after spending 4 days at the Nurburgring I spent 5 days with my family in Prague. In my opinion, the most beautiful city in Europe!
 
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