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Volkswagen Beetle vs. BMW 5-Series Reliability

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Results are for year ending December 31, 2015. Only successfully completed repairs are currently included in the analysis. Routine maintenance, most wear items, recalls, and problems fixed with just a reflash or warning light reset are not included.
Year Make/Model Repair Trips Per 100 Cars Compared to all models for the same year    
2014 BMW 5-Series 11
10% 10% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  31 5-Series, 10.5 months of data per 5-Series, average 13000 miles

 

2013 BMW 5-Series 50
90% 90% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  34 5-Series, 9.9 months of data per 5-Series, average 28200 miles
2013 Volkswagen Beetle   small sample, members only   see reported repairs
  15 Beetles, 9.6 months of data per Beetle, average 18900 miles

* Small sample, members only.

 

2012 BMW 5-Series 32
40% 40% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  28 5-Series, 9.3 months of data per 5-Series, average 40300 miles

 

2011 BMW 5-Series 38
50% 50% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  45 5-Series, 9.2 months of data per 5-Series, average 54500 miles

First year for F10 5-Series.

 

2010 BMW 5-Series 65
80% 80% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  27 5-Series, 9.6 months of data per 5-Series, average 71400 miles

 

2009 BMW 5-Series   small sample, members only   see reported repairs
  14 5-Series, 9.5 months of data per 5-Series, average 76100 miles

* Very small sample, members only.

 

2008 BMW 528 / 550 / M5 90
80% 80% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  43 528 / 550 / M5s, 9.0 months of data per 528 / 550 / M5, average 90700 miles

Refreshed. First year for the turbocharged six in the 535i. Common turbo failures.
2008 BMW 535   small sample, members only   see reported repairs
  24 535s, 8.9 months of data per 535, average 90800 miles

* Small sample, members only.

 

2007 BMW 5-Series 81
70% 70% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  28 5-Series, 9.5 months of data per 5-Series, average 101500 miles

 

2006 BMW 5-Series 68
50% 50% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  34 5-Series, 9.9 months of data per 5-Series, average 97900 miles

 

2005 BMW 5-Series   small sample, members only   see reported repairs
  11 5-Series, 7.8 months of data per 5-Series, average 121600 miles

* Very small sample, members only.

 

2004 BMW 5-Series   small sample, members only   see reported repairs
  22 5-Series, 8.9 months of data per 5-Series, average 99100 miles

* Small sample, members only.

 

2003 BMW 5-Series 103
60% 60% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  27 5-Series, 7.3 months of data per 5-Series, average 111800 miles

 

2002 BMW 5-Series 73
30% 30% Fewest Trips Most Trips
[?] see reported repairs
  33 5-Series, 8.0 months of data per 5-Series, average 118400 miles

 

2001 BMW 5-Series   small sample, members only   see reported repairs
  23 5-Series, 8.5 months of data per 5-Series, average 131400 miles

* Small sample, members only.

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Volkswagen Beetle vs. BMW 5-Series Reliability Comparisons

You won't find Volkswagen Beetle or BMW 5-Series reliability information like this anywhere else. Actual repair frequencies, not just vague dots, to make it clear how much the Volkswagen Beetle and the BMW 5-Series truly differ in reliability.

These stats are promptly updated four times a year, to much more closely track Volkswagen Beetle and BMW 5-Series reliability as the cars age. Others tell you how reliable the Volkswagen Beetle and the BMW 5-Series were a year ago, when the cars were a year younger and had 12,000 fewer miles on them. Only TrueDelta tells you how reliable the Volkswagen Beetle and the BMW 5-Series have been recently.

What People Are Saying about Reliability and the Volkswagen Beetle

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What Our Members Are Saying about the Reliability and Durability of the Volkswagen Beetle

Volkswagen Beetle Reliability and Durability: Cons
YearBody/PowertrainComment
2004 2dr Convertible 115-horsepower 2.0L I4
6-speed shiftable automatic FWD
Despite having an extended warranty the vehicle was in the shop so often it became too inconvenient to own.
2000 2dr Hatch 115-horsepower 2.0L I4
5-speed manual FWD
I bought this car as a "Certified Used". I replaced the main computer twice in the first 3 months. I have replaced 02 sensors every year, sometimes up to 3 a year. Repairs are expensive and required often.
 

What Our Members Are Saying about the Reliability and Durability of the BMW 5-Series

BMW 5-Series Reliability and Durability: Pros
YearBody/PowertrainComment
2008 4dr Sedan 230-horsepower 3.0L I6
6-speed shiftable automatic AWD
Tremendous warranty which includes annual oil change and inspection paid for by dealer. ANY problems are fixed at no charge to customer.
2008 4dr Sedan turbocharged 300hp 3.0L I6
6-speed shiftable automatic AWD
Full service for first 4 years.
2007 4dr Sedan 360-horsepower 4.8L V8
6-speed shiftable automatic RWD
No problems in 15,000 miles
2007 4dr Sedan 215-horsepower 3.0L I6
6-speed manual RWD
Very good reputation.
2005 4dr Sedan 225-horsepower 3.0L I6
6-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Tried and true inline 6 cylinder engine.
2002 4dr Sedan 184-horsepower 2.5L I6
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Very little rust after 8+ years coupled with top notch materials lasting quite a long time. Replacement parts were very costly but performed for long periods. Current owners offer great advice on what and when to perform preventative maintenance.
BMW 5-Series Reliability and Durability: Cons
YearBody/PowertrainComment
2011 4dr Sedan turbocharged 300hp 3.0L I6
8-speed shiftable automatic RWD
- accelerator response (hesitation) - engine issues (check engine light requiring three service visits in two months) - engine malfunction light (part of turbo came disconnected) - faulty fuel sensor (recall first three months of new model year)
2010 4dr Sedan turbocharged 300hp 3.0L I6
6-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Terrible reputation for poor reliability and absurdly high repair costs as early as 50,000 miles.
2010 4dr Sedan turbocharged 300hp 3.0L I6
6-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Unbelievable maintenance after 50K miles, cost and effort.
2005 4dr Sedan 325-horsepower 4.4L V8
6-speed shiftable automatic RWD
Over 80K many systems were beginning to break down
2004 4dr Sedan 225-horsepower 3.0L I6
6-speed manual RWD
Had several repairs the first month of ownership that were covered by CPO warranty...love that BMW CPO
2002 4dr Sedan 225-horsepower 3.0L I6
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
This car is known to have a plethora of problems. I have yet to see if it will hold up well for me.
2002 4dr Sedan 290-horsepower 4.4L V8
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
I picked the above "reason" because it's the worst feature of an otherwise perfect vehicle. The durability of the interior is quite frankly an embarassment. I've lost the buttons for max for the heater, up for the driver side temerature, and the top button for the airflow direction .... don't ask me where they went, they just disappeared! I've broken the drivers side cup holder (and come on ... how pathetic are those cup holders!), and once it breaks, it no longer clicks back into the closed position so now I have a half a cup holder sticking out. One other grievance relating to interior durability ... the plastic footrest (left foot) down below the hood lever also fell apart. The plastic just broke away in
2001 4dr Sedan 225-horsepower 3.0L I6
5-speed shiftable automatic RWD
dealer ship as a mess