Should I buy?

BMW 535d MSport (2014, F10 generation)

In the past I have owned a BMW 520d MSport.  That particular car was a UK import with a 2009 reg, making it the E60 generation with the N47 diesel engine.  Yes, that diesel engine with the timing chain issues …

I owned that car for about 18 months or so and quite liked the automatic gearbox coupled with the rear wheel drive handling.  The 180bhp or so that it offered made it a nice drive, and was very eye-catching in the black/navy colour that changed hue depending on how the sunlight hit it.  However, one day I decided I had pushed my luck enough and traded her against a Seat Leon ST FR 180bhp – that car was great fun.

Anyway, we’re here to talk about the 535d in the subsequent F10 generation to the model I owned.  The particular one I’m looking at is a 2014 model, so there are a few important points in relation to this one.

  1. It has a 3.0 litre N57D30 inline 6 cylinder diesel engine, not the N47 engine that caused all the issues.
  2. It is the later generation model with the final revisions that benefit from things like optional adaptive LED headlights.
  3. It has 313bhp! 
  4. The annual car tax is only €390, which is low for this kind of power delivery. 


What attracts me to this car

I think these cars look sharp in M-Sport trim, especially when in a darker colour like the one presented here.  I like the idea that it has the higher torque that diesel technology offers and when you couple that with a twin turbo system similar to that in my Jaguar XF, the resulting mid-range acceleration is sharp.

I also like the technology of this F10 generation.  Initially this model offered the following features –

  • Brake energy regeneration
    The battery is recharged during engine over-run
  • Active Aerodynamics
    There are active flaps behind the characteristic kidney grilles in the front of the car – these close off during cold starts and open when additional cooling is required.
  • Adaptive Drive
    The addition of this optional extra provides further chassis fine tuning with the driver able to select between Normal, Comfort, Sport and Sport+ driving modes.  Each mode alters the steering assistance, throttle response, gearshift timings, DSC oversight and also controls the adjustable damper settings in the suspension.
  • Park Assist
    As I can actually parallel park, this is not much use to me but is handy for those of you who find parallel parking daunting.
  • Heads Up Display (HUD)
    This is a cool feature I really want in my next car.  A display projected onto the windscreen gives driving information and can also give Night Vision with pedestrian recognition.  Nice.


Model revisions

In 2012, the first revisions were made available to the F10 generation.  These included a power jump for the 535d, bringing the power up to 313bhp.  The Adaptive Drive system was installed as standard with the addition of an Eco PRO mode.

2014 saw further revisions to the F10.  The lower air intake was changed, Xenon lights were fitted as standard while Adaptive LED headlamps were made available as an optional extra.  A new 8 speed auto box featuring Proactive Drive also appeared. 


What to look out for on the 535d

In terms of the F10 535d, there are a few things to watch out for

  1. Ensure all the electrics are operational
  2. Ensure the auto start/stop system works
  3. Look for a full service history as these cars are temperamental when not serviced properly
  4. Ensure the automatic transmission fluid has been changed or else get it done – a drain and a full fluid replacement.  Warning – use only BMW fluid of the ZF Guard fluid for the ZF8 box
  5. Water has been known to leak into the rear footwell so look out for evidence of this.  This is as a result of perforation over time to the waterproof membrane in the door.
  6. If gearshift paddles are fitted to the steering wheel, check they are operational
  7. Check the boot pivot mount is not rusty or loose
  8. Check the needles on the speedo and rev counter do not vibrate at idle – if they do, an expensive reprogramming job is required
  9. Ensure all the recalls have been done – there are some serious ones on the F10 relating to the EGR cooler erupting in flames

BMW 535d MSport (2014, F10) – Vital Statistics

Power230 kW (313 bhp) @ 4400rpm
Torque630 Nm (456 lb/ft) @ 1500rpm
0-100 km/h (0-62 mph)5.3 seconds
Maximum speed250 km/h (155 mph) 
Fuel consumption (average)5.4 l/100km (52.0 mpg)
Fuel type, tank capacityDiesel, 95 litres
Weight1800 kg
EngineBMW N57D30,
Twin variable geometry turbochargers,
DOHC, Aluminium block,
Bosch piezo-electric injectors 
Displacement2993 cc
Cylinders and valvesInline 6, 24v
Transmission8 speed ZF8HP automatic transmission
DrivetrainRear wheel drive

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