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  #1  
Old 06-29-2008, 02:40 AM
CoyoteStarfish's Avatar
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ENEMY TERITORY . . . (BMW diesel)

Easy now, don't tie me up to a stake and stone me for this one.

What do you guys think of the 80's diesel BMW? As rare as it is; I've had my eye out for some time looking for one. I ended up with my baby (300D) but my first love was unfortunately a BMW.

First was a '81 318i then an '84 528e (both sticks!) and now that I've "grown up" into the compression-ignition phase, sparkplugs just don't do it for me anymore.

I would love to have a Beamer under my butt again, so what do you diesel nuts have to say about the 524td? I just hope 'Benzine' doesn't get jealous.
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1994 Sunurban 4x4 6.5L diesel
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  #2  
Old 06-29-2008, 02:54 AM
ForcedInduction
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It has a timing belt. Enough to keep me away from one.
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  #3  
Old 06-29-2008, 03:51 AM
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I heard it was a good engine, but thats just from word of mouth.
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Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?

As long as they would add one additional commandment for you to keep thy religion to thyself.
George Carlin (Wonder where he is now..)

1981 240d (engine donor 1983 240d) recently rebuilt engine hurray! - No more.. fought a tree and the tree won.

pearl black 1983 240d 4speed (Converted!@$$%) atleast the tranny was rebuilt.
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  #4  
Old 06-29-2008, 03:55 AM
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I heard they are fast compared to the mercedes or atleast they are easier to increase the hp. not sure though. Id imagine their like volkswagens. as in have fun driving a german tin can with an interior made of reshaped milk cartons
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  #5  
Old 06-29-2008, 04:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbobenz View Post
I heard they are fast compared to the mercedes or atleast they are easier to increase the hp. not sure though. Id imagine their like volkswagens. as in have fun driving a german tin can with an interior made of reshaped milk cartons
Bmw allways had good interiors and felt solid very good handling. What they were renound for was there electrical problems.
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Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?

As long as they would add one additional commandment for you to keep thy religion to thyself.
George Carlin (Wonder where he is now..)

1981 240d (engine donor 1983 240d) recently rebuilt engine hurray! - No more.. fought a tree and the tree won.

pearl black 1983 240d 4speed (Converted!@$$%) atleast the tranny was rebuilt.
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  #6  
Old 06-29-2008, 08:05 AM
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bmw diesel

I rented one in Italy. Great car handling and power. Way faster than a Benz.

Side note: Did you know that you could opt for a BMW diesel engine in an '80s Lincoln Continental?
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  #7  
Old 06-29-2008, 08:19 AM
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The only thing I don't like about the BMWs is that they don't age well - their interiors get rough fast, the exteriors get rough fast, and they look "old" compared to their MB counterparts.
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  #8  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by POS View Post
The only thing I don't like about the BMWs is that they don't age well - their interiors get rough fast, the exteriors get rough fast, and they look "old" compared to their MB counterparts.

Oh you got THAT right!

I used to have a 525TDs, E34....

That thing was an absolute PITA. Too much electronic gizmology, things not working that defied all logic to sort out, silly things like the elect windows and wipers not working properly....

The only 'good' part was the engine, the M51 turbo-diesel has 147 BHP at 2.5 litre but although all that power, the car still seemed 'slow'--a 1.1L ford would see it off at the lights--(Auto-box too sluggish)....

The M51 was a chain-driven beast, I dont know what the 524D had, but would be surprised if it was 'belt-driven'! Chains are only simplex chains and do cause issues--There are two chains on the M51...
Fuel injection pumps will spring leaks from all seals at around 10 years old and cost quite a bit to repair. Special-tools needed to remove/replace pump Fuel-system is all electronic...
Add to that, the water-pump impeller problem, the valve dropping problem on earlier ones and head-gaskets every so often--Even heard of a crank-shaft snapping

Cloth interiors show wear at an alarming rate, the general trim quality is nothing like M.B. Even the paint-work quality is nothing much better than a ford or gm....

Mega over-rated in my opinion the BMW....

Nah, I would stick to a 'Proper' car
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W123, 1985 300TD Wagon, 256K,
-Most recent M.B. purchase, Cost-a-plenty, Gulps BioDiesel extravagantly, and I love it like an old dog.

W114, 1975 280E Custard Yellow,
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  #9  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:31 AM
ForcedInduction
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Originally Posted by Alastair View Post
The only 'good' part was the engine, the M51 turbo-diesel has 147 BHP at 2.5 litre
The only BMW Diesel the USA has ever seen is the the 1985 524TD with the 2.4L 115hp M21. Yes, it uses a timing belt.
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  #10  
Old 06-29-2008, 05:57 PM
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A friend and I both bought new cars in the early '90s, his a 530i and mine the 4matic Mercedes.

The BMW seemed to handle flatter and more crisply, and seemed slightly faster, but the tradeoff was lots of road noise and engine noise with a much harsher ride. Mine had the orthopedic seats as the normal M-B seats IMO are weak compared to the BMW seats (or even VW), personally I felt the M-B was so much more car to drive and ride in than the BMW, it was more than twice the price of his so that's to be expected.

Comparing the W123 to the 524 I'd take the 524 (sorry guys) for its handling and power, comparing the BMW to the '87 300D I like the faster Mercedes and its better ride and comfort with the industry-leading solid chassis which is much better on bumpy roads etc. than the floppier 5-series chassis and over-damped suspension.
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  #11  
Old 06-29-2008, 09:50 PM
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The 524td had a nice running engine ( I read that it was made by Steyr in Austria), and I always liked the mid-80s 5-series BMW styling, but in addition to the timing-belt, the BMW diesel shares a major flaw common to all makes that marketed a diesel in the US for a few years and then quit - diesel-specific parts may be difficult, or even impossible, to find! Even back in the mid-90s, the shop where I worked was having problems getting some parts for '80s Camry diesels and 524tds.
If you want a diesel, stick with a make that has a proven long-term diesel track record.

Happy Motoring, Mark
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  #12  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:08 PM
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What's so bad about a timing belt? They're way easier to service then a chain...

-Jason
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1991 350SDL. 230,000 miles (new motor @ 150,000).

2013 Fiat 500E. 20,000 miles, 80 miles at a time.
2012 Passat TDI. 95,000 miles. More space, power, and fuel economy than the Benz
2004 Touareg V10 TDI. 150,000 miles. One of 450.
1999 Jetta TDI. 310,000 miles.
1992 Jetta ECOdiesel. 156,000 miles. 1 of 48. Sold.
1991 Jetta ECOdiesel. 430,000 miles. 1 of 700. Sold to VeeDubTDI, totaled in front of our house
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  #13  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:18 PM
ForcedInduction
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Quote:
Originally Posted by compu_85 View Post
What's so bad about a timing belt? They're way easier to service then a chain...
They need replacement 3x as often and are much easier to break, especially with the heavy load of the injection pump.

I'd rather service a chain every 150-250k miles than a belt every 40k miles.
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  #14  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:39 PM
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I bet ya the belt change interval on those is 60k, just like my old VW.

The sprockets on my 400k mile 91 jetta are all perfect still. Doing a belt takes just over an hour (no motor mount in the way like my 99). Will the ones on your benz be shiney and new when it rolls around to 400k? I'm not saying that chains are bad... just that belts aren't bad either and although they require more frequent service then a chain, the ease of service makes them better suited to a less expensive car.

-J
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  #15  
Old 06-29-2008, 10:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by compu_85 View Post
I bet ya the belt change interval on those is 60k, just like my old VW.

The sprockets on my 400k mile 91 jetta are all perfect still. Doing a belt takes just over an hour (no motor mount in the way like my 99). Will the ones on your benz be shiney and new when it rolls around to 400k? I'm not saying that chains are bad... just that belts aren't bad either and although they require more frequent service then a chain, the ease of service makes them better suited to a less expensive car.

-J
I would take a belt over a chain any day. Modern belts are 100k belts and the older ones are cake to change. VE pumps are super easy to time with their dial gauge hole and even easier to time if they are the ECU-controlled later models. Just start the car and check a graph. It takes me longer to remove all the components necessary to get at the chain on my 617 then to do a belt job on my '98 TDI.
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