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I own a 2008 Silverstone M5 with 23,xxx miles. Last Sunday night (12/12), while taking my 1 and 3 year old daughters with me to pick up food for my sick wife, my car had a major issue. While traveling at about 30 mph after making a left turn from a traffic light, my car started making a violent knocking sound, the oil pressure light came on and black smoke started pouring from the front end in the space of about 5 seconds. I pulled over as soon as possible (about 100 yards), called BMW using the SOS button, arranged to have my wife pick up the family (it was only about 15 degrees) and set up a tow time. I had the tow company deliver the M5 to my local dealership: United BMW of Roswell (one of Roger Penske's dealerships). When the tow driver loaded the vehicle on the flat bed, there was a deposit of oil on the asphalt.

The reason for my warning to all owners isn't the malfunction of the car. We all know that issues can arise, no matter the build quality or engineering sophistication of the manufacturer. No, my warning is about the response that I received. I was just advised this afternoon that BMW is denying to cover ANY of the repairs or associated costs, despite the fact that I still have ample time left under the original factory warranty coverage. This is a vehicle that I purchased with 6,700 miles in pristine condition from a BMW dealer, with which I have never used launch control, never hit the rev limiter, (embarrassingly) never exceeded 105 mph, never had on a track, never had in a DE event and have had serviced exactly as prescribed. The reason for denying to honor the manufacturer's warranty, you ask? I was told by the dealership that I must have run through some large puddles of water, which caused water to go into the intake, which then caused two holes to be blown through the bottom of the engine. Because I drove through the puddles, I am responsible for all costs and repairs.

For the record, I have not run through any large puddles. In fact, there had not been any precipitation in the Atlanta area in the month of December preceding the failure of my engine. There have only been three days with measurable rainfall in Atlanta this month, and only one day with over 0.5" (later that night and into the following day after the car had been delivered to the dealership - the car was never driven in that wet weather, which only produced a measly 0.64" of rain). It amazes me that driving the car in the rain would be such a concern, but it is. I should also note that the area of North Atlanta where I live has impeccable roads. This is mostly a commuter car for me, so I am only on major surface streets and highways on my 8 mile commute. I don't contend with potholes.

I apologize for the long post, but I think that the response from BMW should concern us all. I have owned 6 BMW's in the past 10 years. I already knew which BMW's I intended to purchase over the next couple years. My only question was whether to purchase an extended warranty and keep the M5 when the warranty expired, or to purchase another M car. I will now tell you that this, sadly is my last BMW. It's one thing to deal with issues. It's quite another to know that the warranty that you rely on for financial peace of mind with a complex automobile is worthless. I am now left to figure out how to proceed to avoid coming out of pocket for a new engine and who knows how much in labor costs. I assure you that I will pursue this with vigor. However, it's clear that instead of demonstrating loyalty, or expressing concern about an engine that went up in smoke with two very small children in the car, BMW intends to find a way to shirk their financial commitments under the warranty. I can only assume that they believe treating me with such disdain will net them the savings of the engine and labor, so the decision for them is an easy one.

You can all take from this story as you will. To anyone using this great forum of terrific BMW enthusiasts to determine whether to purchase one of these cars, I say be VERY, VERY careful. You cannot count on your warranty to be there when you really need it. Two footnotes:

1) For those of you that may question the cause of the issue, I can tell you only what I have been told by the dealership. The next contact that I receive from BMW will be the first. No explanations, no apologies, no concern for the well being of my children that were in the car. None of that extension of service to someone that has owned 6 of their vehicles and now owns an M5. I have only the 2nd hand, summary outcomes from my service advisor.
2) For those of you considering an extended warranty, my personal advice would be to run from the BMW offering. I have read some say that they would pay more for the peace of mind that comes from a BMW warranty instead of a warranty company (a perspective that I thought sound). I would caution you: if I can't get a catastrophic repair done on a 2008 car still under the original warranty, how confident can you feel about a warranty with additional limitations?

Thanks for your indulgence of the long post. Please take my comments as they are intended - a caution to a community that I appreciate very much, even if I post infrequently.

Jim
 

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Jim, glad no harm was done to your family first and foremost. Secondly, much thanks for taking the time to inform all M5 board members of your recent events.

True golden words: "to a community that I appreciate very much, even if I post infrequently."
 

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Wirelessly posted (Treo: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_0_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8A306 Safari/6531.22.7)

If you did get water in engine it is covered by comprehensive anyways so not the end of the world. Didn't read whole post. On my phone.
 

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Jim, that is terrible to hear- at least you and your family are okay. I'd certainly consider contacting an attorney if they don't budge, but I'm assuming you were leaning towards that anyway.

These stories regarding dealership and warranty experiences have me seriously reconsidering my next car. As much as Mercedes/AMG seems to be disliked around here, I have nothing but good things to say about Mercedes service. They goodwilled a few expensive repairs on my old vehicle, we always get a MB loaner car when my wife's C350 (her choice, not mine :biggrin:) is in for service, and the SA's are very competent and professional. I really think they run an excellent operation in this country. My dad also raves about his experiences with his Porsche dealer (which is strange considering his age), so it's really unfortunate that a company that builds such great cars has such dismal post-sale service.
 

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Take legal action immediately! Don't waste your time with this!
These idiots need a slap around the ear! Give them that!
 

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sorry to hear that, wish things get well for u soon.
 

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Obviously BMW is full of it, but let's entertain their suggestion for the sake of argument. The air intakes near the top of the radiator. They are implying you drove through water so deep that your car would have been submerged to the hood. That's ridiculous. If that were true the interior of your entire car would have been flooded.
 

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Blow this issue up sky-high jim.

You can't lose this.

I;m from Europe, we get some pretty serious rain and I never heard of E60's getting these failures.

W
 

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I'm sorry to hear what happened to your car and how BMW reacted to your situation. I hope things get resolved in your favor.
 

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This story sounds familiar. This has been tried before by BMW. I would call my insurance company and start a claim for "hydrolock". They will likely inspect the vehicle and do the required testing to see if there is water in the engine(or fuel). I'm assuming you pay good money to a reputable insurance company, let them work for you. As mentioned before if water did get into your engine it should be covered by insurance.
 

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Be sure to post your complaint on Facebook BMW site as you'll reach more people, the embarrassment factor for BMW goes way up, and BMW often monitors and replies to these posts.
 

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This story sounds familiar. This has been tried before by BMW. I would call my insurance company and start a claim for "hydrolock". They will likely inspect the vehicle and do the required testing to see if there is water in the engine(or fuel). I'm assuming you pay good money to a reputable insurance company, let them work for you. As mentioned before if water did get into your engine it should be covered by insurance.
This is what I was alluding to. If dealership claims hydrolock, then simply call your auto insurance company and file a claim under your comprehensive coverage. Simply tell them that you are being denied a warranty claim for an engine failure because the dealership claims it was hydrolock. Their adjuster will inspect. If they can provide proof that it is not, your claim against BMW will be stronger. I would at least do this before trying to call a lawyer. If it is actually hydrolock (which is doubtful), they will pay for the repair less your deductible.
 

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Good advice using your insurance company, the only thing I would add is pull the car out of that dealership because the SA is obviously not going to fight for you. Find another dealership and let them verify the diagnosis along with the insurance company. Sorry for your troubles.
 

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I think you will see BMW & BMWNA continue to find ways to run away from warranties on the E60 M5's. I loved every one I owned but unfortunately as they age I feel ownership will become untenable unless you have bottomless pockets and a high tolerance for liars.
 

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I agree with the post about getting insurance involved. You have to build your case because your local BMW dealer is trying to pin a 5 figure repair bill on you based off of some pretty questionable speculation. If I were you I would have been on the phone with my lawyer the second the dealer tried to blame it on me.
 

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Warning: Current/Prospective Owners

Is it just me or is this a trend that BMW is forcing upon loyal M-enthusiast? I am concerned with the recent posts that BMW has fallen to a 3rd tier car company. When they don't stand behind their own warranty and assume the owner is the one to blame without an appropriate detailed invesigation into product failure gives me great pause. I to have owned 4- M-cars and this issue concerns me greatly.
Most dealerships are very familiar with those of us who have our M-cars maintained by them and who are fanatical about properly maintaining and caring for our cars as opposed to those who may abuse their M's. Our loyalty to BMW-Motorsport and the Dealership appear to count for nothing. They are simply turning their backs and failing to support those of us who have legitimate issues. I hope I am inaccurate in this regard! I have enjoyed all of my M-Cars and my relationship with the local dealership. I hope this is not a planned course of action by BMWNA. My continued relationship with BMW is becoming tenuous based upon some legitimate issues raised by members of this board. I hope there is a fair resolution to issue. As for now, I'll continue to drive my beast, but hold my breath if I have a legitimate issue that my factory warranty should cover. BMWNA is surely not promoting any peace of mind!

Please keep us posted on the progress of this issue. All eyes will be watching and BMW potentially stands to be on the losing side of a relatively moderate issue to resolve that is fair to all parties and secondarily, to send a message of support to loyal M-Customers. Good luck and Merry Christmas.:santasmile2:
 

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I'm having Dejavu....this exact scenario happened to someone else on this board, and the dealer ended up backtracking and honoring the warranty. Anyone remember this?
 

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True. Thanks for the post.

This story sounds familiar. This has been tried before by BMW. I would call my insurance company and start a claim for "hydrolock". They will likely inspect the vehicle and do the required testing to see if there is water in the engine(or fuel). I'm assuming you pay good money to a reputable insurance company, let them work for you. As mentioned before if water did get into your engine it should be covered by insurance.
 
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