BMW dealers UK

Jolly bad luck. Our X5’s been completely reliable over nearly three years/40K miles, a great vehicle. We’ve had a succession of BMWs, all have been extremely reliable.

We’re equidistant between two BMW dealers, one’s great, the other’s pretty hopeless (well, their sales side is). It does seem to be a matter of luck if you find a good one.

I liked both my BMW 5 Series, nice to work on too, maintenance access generally well though out too.

Gosh , my colleague has just bought a new one after having terrible issues with another famous marque !! hope he has better success .

A friend of mine once bought a slightly used M3 from a dealer, which was in excellent condition but needed new tyres. On the first drive it was handling really badly so after he arrived home he looked at the tyres and realised that they had put the wrong size on the car! Dealer said bring it back and we will sort it, but my friend said they could collect it (on a trailer) because he wasn’t going to drive it again until it was fixed.

I collected my BMW from the main dealer after a service a few years ago, and the ride felt awful. Ok, it was on runcrap tyres, but it was bone-jarring.

Got home, checked the pressures… 5 bar was the lowest pressure.

And guess what? They didn’t give a hoot. The dealership has a new name now, but other (worse) experiences I had with them meant that was probably the only bmw I’ll own.

Fine if I wanted to buy another car, as hinted at by earlier posts.

BMW UK didn’t respond to a major complaint I submitted. So confidence inspiring.

I doubt that a ‘diagnostic fee’ is BMW corporate policy. It’s obviously merely a profit item, and if they insist on it you only have 2 choices – pay it, or take your business elsewhere.

As @Richard.Dane recommended, find a good specialist shop. It’s been a long time since I’ve owned a BMW out of warranty (although we’re buying my wife’s 330 touring at the end of her 3 year lease, so we’ll be back in that status), and when I did we used a great BMW specialist shop; much more cost-effective.

Here where we live, I have to say that our preferred dealer’s service is pretty good. I think they know that service is competitive. This car in 3 years has had zero faults, has very few miles, and so I anticipate it will be low maintenance and for small things I’ll probably still use the dealer.

Diagnostic fee to me sounds like a revenue management item – fashion of nowadays business world… be prepared to have more of those in the future.

We should also charge diagnostic fees whenever a member has a complaint about his imperfect NAIM system, looking for advice.

The dealer was quite clear it the diagnostic fee is a BMW policy - and according to Graeme earlier he was told the same thing…not that it makes any difference to my wallet of course.

I think the point is that the BMW-approved time for a job doesn’t include anything to assess the problem and prepare to fix it. Hence the diagnostic fee which represents half an hour of a technician’s time or there abouts plus overheads.

But charging that to diagnose something trivial is down to the dealer. They don’t have to charge if they don’t want to. BMW would never know…


Sometimes I pay a diagnostic charge, sometimes it gets left off. Having a good relationship with a good service manager or adviser in a good dealer is the key. Most things are negotiable.

We are lucky with our local BMW dealer for the past 20 years, on both the sales and servicing side. We check the competition when a car change is due and they consistently come up short. This only reinforces how lucky it is to have something approaching a good dealer. Relationships take years to build and seconds to dismantle. One or two of key staff movements is all it takes. In many cases, you can’t build a relationship to start with.

Prior to using this dealer, the quality of service I received from several other adjacent dealers had convinced me that the first BMW I ran would be the last. If the only dealer(s) you have access to are rubbish (I could name a few), you essentially don’t have a dealer. We are equally lucky to have an excellent BMW independent at our disposal. We mix and match as necessary/convenient.

It’s like having a good HiFi dealer. Them who treats us fair gets the business. I like BMW but if we didn’t have access to a good dealer and/or indie we would be driving another brand. If our HiFi dealer didn’t stock Naim we might be driving a Linn system.

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