Ladies and Gents,

I’m looking to get rid of my 2004 Acura TL, just because I’m bored with it. I absolutely want to stick with a manual transmission, I want RWD, is kinda/sorta/fairly reliable, won’t cost an absolute fortune to fix, has a back seat big enough for a car seat, I don’t want to take a step down from the ‘luxury’ of the TL, and the car has to cost less than $15k. I can turn a wrench but don’t necessarily have the time to spend 8 hours every weekend, so I’m coming across the 328i and had a few questions.

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Every time I think I’ve found the proverbial needle in the haystack and find posts that say the E9X N52 is reliable and that maintenance won’t cost you as much as people lead you to believe, I find things like the valve cover gaskets, the valvetronic motor & seal, the eccentric shaft sensor that make me rethink BMW ownership. I’m not afraid to spend a few bucks here and there to keep my cars running, but if it’s going to cost $1k/mo, I’m going to keep driving my TL. I believe I’ve done my homework, but there’s nothing better than hearing others’ experiences.

After 100k miles, what’s the maintenance like? I know about the water pump & thermostat, but w

hat are other not-so common repairs that one could expect? I see very few N52 cars over 250k; what does it take to get the Bimmer to that kind of mileage? If anybody keeps meticulous maintenance records for their cars, I’d like to hear your cost per mile. (FYI, taking my TL from 115k to its current 159k, I’m averaging a total cost of ownership of $0.278/mile)

Thanks all!