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1995 BMW 5 Series Sedan

4dr Sedan 525i

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  • $36,500 original MSRP

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Printable Version

1995 BMW 5 Series Sedan

Printable Version

1995 BMW 5 Series Sedan

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1995 BMW 525i

Source: New Car Test Drive

Overview

No question about it, the darling of the '60s nuclear family - the station wagon - has made an almost startling recovery the past few years. Nearly relegated to the automotive ash heap during the '80s, the revived popularity of the venerable wagon has proved not every family with two parents, 2.5 kids and a dog wants a minivan.

And station wagons can now be found from the bottom of the string (Honda Civic) to the top (Mercedes). In between, there are wagons from Saturn, Subaru, Toyota, Volvo, Buick, Ford and the subject of our test drive, BMW.

Specifically, it's the BMW 525i Touring, the station wagon for the family with some extra cash to spend, the desire for the driving fun of a sports sedan, and the need for the cargo/passenger versatility of a wagon. In short, it's for the family that doesn't want to drive a minivan and can afford not to.

Walkaround

For starters, the Touring looks like a BMW sedan with a cargo area tastefully attached where the trunk used to be. Which is good, because 5-Series BMWs look good to start with, and this expansion into a wagon was nicely carried out.

For 1995, the 525i Touring gets a slightly modified, more kidney-shaped grille, rocker panel strips and panels under the bumpers in body color.

Behind that distinctive grille is a 2.5-liter, DOHC in-line 6-cylinder engine with variable valve timing. (Variable valve timing maximizes torque output over the entire engine's speed range for improved throttle response.) This powerplant produces 189 hp at 5900 rpm and 184 pound-feet of torque at 4200 rpm. Other engine features include electronic fuel injection and electronic engine managment.

A 4-speed automatic transmission with economy, sport and manual shift modes is standard. In the economy mode, transmission shifts are made at lower engine speeds to conserve fuel. In the sport mode, the shifts are made at higher rpm for better performance. In the manual mode, the driver can shift the transmission from gear-to-gear manually for performance driving, or to better suit conditions, such as starting in deep snow.

BMW's sports sedans have a justified reputation for impressive handling characteristics, made possible by race-developed suspension systems. The slightly more pedestrian station wagon has not been shorted in that category.

It rides on the same 4-wheel independent suspension used in the 5-Series sedans. In technical terms, the front suspension is of the double-pivot, strut-type, while the rear is BMW's patented Track Link system. More important to know than the nomenclature is the fact that the front and rear systems work together quite nicely.

Four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock brakes are standard, as is power-assisted steering that varies effort depending on engine speed: more assist at low speed for easy maneuvering, less assist at highway speeds for better control. Cast alloy wheels and wide 225/60R-15 radials are also standard.

On the safety side, the Touring offers dual airbags, front and rear computer-designed crush zones that dissipate crash energy as they collapse, and side-guard door beams.

Other popular standard features include intermittent wipers (car speed determines wiper speed), heated outside mirrors and heated driver's door lock, central locking, built-in tracks for an optional roof rack and metallic paint.

Interior Features

If you have seen the inside of a BMW 5-Series sedan, you have seen the interior of the Touring. Identical. As we said before, the only difference is that covered cargo section out back.

BMW prides itself on its ergonomics (everything in its proper place for ease of use), and justifiably so. The sound system, though, is a bit complicated - too many small buttons and a really inefficient system for controlling fade/balance and bass/treble. Simply terrible.

The few gauges are large and easy to read. There is a digital systems-check feature. A trip computer is optional.

There is no console storage and no cupholders - the Germans still have not come to grips with the American penchant for driving and drinking coffee or soda pop at the same time.

The hand brake is on the driver's side of the console, where it should be. A drop-down armrest for each front bucket is a nice feature.

Also available is the industry's (heck, the world's) only dual sliding sunroof(s). A front panel and a rear panel can be opened and closed independently or in tandem by a single control.

Important note: Read the instruction manual before trying to operate the sunroofs. Our test driver figured he didn't need any coaching. Fifteen minutes later he finally got both panels closed at the same time.

The interior is comfortable and quite roomy for four. Having three in the backseat is a bit chummy. We were surprised to find the limited amount of cargo space compared with other makes.

Anyone seated in the BMW 525i Touring is surrounded by one of the most impressive arrays of standard comfort and convenience features in the business.

Settle in while we run through a portion of the list: Walnut trim, velour carpeting, time-delay courtesy lights with actuation from the driver's exterior door handle, map lights, tinted glass, power windows with key-off operation, one-touch lowering of all windows and one-touch lowering of driver's window only, two-stage rear defroster, microfiltered ventilation, air conditioning with left/right separate controls, AM/FM stereo with cassette player, illuminated vanity mirrors, rechargeable flashlight in the glove box, and a cargo cover.

As would be expected, the Touring has the edge in quality and luxury over its lower-priced competitors. Only the more-expensive Mercedes-Benz is its equal.

Driving Impressions

To repeat, the 525i Touring is a sports sedan with a huge trunk, and it rides and drives like the vehicle it is at heart. If you don't ever look in the rear-view mirror, you simply won't know you're piloting a wagon and not a car.

The additional cargo area adds a not-insubstantial 199 lb. to the 3560-lb. curb weight of the sedan. But at no time, even in hard cornering - not a typical wagon situation - does that extra weight make the Touring feel top- or tail-heavy.

The ride is more stiff and controlled than the typical American station wagon, which may surprise first-timers. But after a few miles, even the most zealous soft-ride exponent will begin to appreciate the feeling of security and control the Touring's more taut suspension affords.

The 6-cylinder engine - the result of years of refinement by BMW - is smooth and quiet. It doesn't, however, give the Touring much zip in the acceleration department. Full-throttle starts are at first leisurely, then a bit more brisk as engine speed builds.

But let's be honest here: Station wagon drivers are not typically in the rip-and-tear driving mode. The Touring has plenty of acceleration to blend effortlessly with traffic, pass with confidence and handle everyday driving responsibilities.

Summary

The 525i Touring is an excellent all-around package. It offers traditional BMW qualities such as understated luxury, very good handling, first-rate interior and exterior finish and sports-sedan character, with the versatility of a station wagon.

We predict you will experience not one bit of buyer's remorse on the way home from the dealership. On the contrary, you'll probably be complimenting yourself on your astute choice in vehicles.

Model Line Overview
Base Price (MSRP)
$37,000
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Specifications As Tested
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Price as tested (MSRP)
$42,325
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Printable Version

1995 BMW 5 Series Sedan

Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Std
Traction/Stability Control Opt

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std

Road Visibility

Fog Lamps Std
Electrochromic Rearview Mirror Std
Intermittent Wipers Std
Printable Version

1995 BMW 5 Series Sedan

BMW Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

Every Certified Pre-Owned BMW comes with a protection plan designed to give you the ultimate peace-of-mind.

All Certified Pre-Owned BMW vehicles are exceptional, as are our two tiers of certification:

-BMW Certified Pre-Owned: Covers you for 2 years/50,000 miles¹ after the expiration of the 4-year/50,000-mile New Vehicle/SAV Limited Warranty for a total of 6 years/100,000 miles¹. This includes 24/7 Roadside Assistance and BMW AssistTM Emergency Call, which includes automatic collision notification, and TeleService

-BMW Certified Pre-Owned Elite: These are newer model year, lower mileage (more than 300 miles but less than 15,001 miles) vehicles. This warranty covers you for 1 year/25,000 miles¹ after the expiration of the 4-year/50,000-mile New Vehicle/SAV Limited Warranty or for a total of 5 years/75,000 miles¹. This includes 5 years of 24/7 Roadside Assistance and BMW AssistTM Emergency Call, which includes automatic collision notification, and TeleService.

Vehicles must pass a rigorous pre-certification inspection conducted by BMW certified technicians.

For complete program details, visit cpo.bmwusa.com.

¹ Whichever comes first
Age/Mileage Eligibility 5 years / 60,000 miles
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection View & Download the BMW Certified Pre-Owned Inspection Checklist
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance Yes
Special Financing Yes
Transferrable Warranty Yes
Warranty Deductible $50

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

1995 BMW 5 Series Sedan

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