common bmw engine problems


Shopping for a Used BMW? Engine Problems You Should Know About

BMWs are an incredibly popular vehicle brand in the United States and even led the luxury car market with around 280,000 car sales in 2020, according to data on Statista. However, while BMWs are known for their performance and luxury, they are often not known for their overall reliability and can often suffer from various issues.

Along with the possibility of issues arising, BMW owners can also expect to pay around $1,000-1,700 a year for maintenance and repairs, according to, which is higher than average compared to other vehicles. And without the right warranty protection in place, you could be left paying for expensive repair bills on your own.

To help you be better prepared to avoid this, we’ve taken the BMW models with the most reported issues on and broken them down for you below.

Common BMW Engine Problems – By Model

According to, the five BMW vehicles with the highest number of reported issues are:

  • 2013 X3
  • 2011 X5
  • 2008 335
  • 2007 335
  • 2013 X5

Let’s take a look at the engine problems you’re most likely to encounter if you own one of these models.

Model 1: BMW X3 2013

Registering 30 reported issues on and 125 on NHTSA, the 2013 X3 also appears on the Consumer Reports list of used cars to avoid.

Issue 1: Broken timing chain guide

Estimated repair cost: $6,290

Issue 2: Engine stalls/shuts down while driving

Estimated repair cost: $320

Issue 3: Engine failure

Estimated repair cost: $0 (although bear in mind the data is limited)

Issue 4: Engine mounts failed

Estimated repair cost: $1,200

Issue 5: Oil leak

Estimated repair cost: $500

BMW X5 2011

The 2011 X5 has seven reported engine-related problems on However, NHTSA data shows 126 complaints.

Issue 1: Excessive oil consumption

Estimated repair cost: Unavailable

Issue 2: Shut down while driving

Estimated repair cost: $2,300

Issue 3: Stalled while driving

Estimated repair cost: $7,000

Issue 4: Engine malfunction reduced engine power

Estimated repair cost: Unavailable

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Model 3: BMW 335 2008

The 2008 335 registers just five reported engine issues on, but 77 on NHTSA.

Issue 1: Serpentine belt broke, ingested into the engine

Estimated repair cost: $3,700

Issue 2: Check engine light on

Estimated repair cost: Unavailable

Issue 3: Engine failure

Estimated repair cost: Unavailable

Issue 4: Turbo rattle

Estimated repair cost: $4,700

Model 4: BMW 335 2007

The 2007 335 registers just four reported engine issues on, but 87 on NHTSA.

Issue 1: Engine overheats

Estimated repair cost: Unavailable

Issue 2: Poor gas mileage

Estimated repair cost: $2,300

Issue 3: Running roughly

Estimated repair cost: $2,880

Issue 4: Turbo failure

Estimated repair cost: $4,800

Model 5: BMW X5 2013

Another model that also appears on the Consumer Reports list of used cars to avoid is the 2013 X5. The vehicle has seen only two reported engine issues on and 34 on NHTSA.

Issue 1: Engine harness faulty

Estimated repair cost: $900

Issue 2: Hesitation at start

Estimated repair cost: Unavailable

How to Prevent BMW Engine Problems

The best way to combat against car repairs is by preventing the need for them entirely. To do this, vehicle owners should be performing essential routine maintenance throughout the year and at recommended milestones, such as changing your oil every 8,000 miles. Doing so can not only help you to prolong the life of your vehicle, but it can help you to avoid more potentially costly repairs in the future.
For owners of a used BMW especially, the recommended maintenance schedule is determined by your vehicle’s Condition Based Servicing (CBS) system. Essentially, this is part of the onboard computer system that uses data about the components and your driving habits to tailor the maintenance schedule to you.

Some regular maintenance is always recommended, though, and if you want to avoid engine problems, make sure you do the following regularly:

  • Check your tires
  • Change the engine oil
  • Check the engine’s rubber hoses and gaskets for wear or cracks
  • Check your spark plugs
  • Check your air filter

Remember that if you don’t stick to the vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule, you risk voiding the coverage plan .

Protect Your BMW With an Extended Warranty

No matter the make/model, all vehicles need regular maintenance to run at their best, and BMWs are no exception. In fact, some BMW models are not renowned for their reliability. In contrast, other models and model years tend to suffer from problems that can lead to costly repairs. This is especially true when purchasing a used BMW, as chances are the initial factory warranty has expired (or will be soon).

If your warranty has or will expire soon, it’s important to protect yourself and your BMW from the costs of unexpected repairs with the help of an extended warranty . Along with component protection, you can also receive even more savings with benefits and perks like roadside assistance services and more with the right.

To help you get started on finding the right protection for your BMW, check out our  top extended warranty providers .

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