Originally Posted by M3_Dust
this has been passed along on a few other BMW forums, I think a lot of people here would benefit from this information. In the days before BMW included "free" maintenance with the purchase of their cars, their maintenance intervals were about double the frequency of their current schedule.
This is interesting, but really has nothing to do with the modern models.
BMW started these maintenance intervals, I think, in 1999, may have been sooner. The new E46 came out then. This has been at least 10yrs ago, and since then BMW cars rate as some of the best for used car value.
If the new maintenance were really detrimental to the cars, we would have seen a steady decline in BMW's lasting longer than the warranties. But, since it's been at least 10yrs, those who had worries need to stop.
The facts speak for themselves.
Most car manufacturers have gone to longer and longer maintenance intervals. Why? Because modern car construction and modern materials are vastly superior to cars being built 20yrs ago.
When BMW switched to longer oil drain intervals they also switched to synthetic oil, and over the years synthetic has proven it's longer drain capabilities over and over.
So, I don't think there is anything "interesting" in that when
BMW switched to free maintenance that the service intervals also changed. It stands to reason that BMW made a conscious engineering and marketing decision because they may actually know what they are talking about.
Materials used and fluids used in BMW's are top of line, high tech products that have proven their longer life.
Audi and MB used to have free maintenance as well, but dropped the programs to keep sales prices lower. BMW decided to keep their program.
For the 2007 model year Audi dropped free maintenance. The service intervals stayed the same. Now, if you want free maintenance in your new Audi and MB, you can have it for an extra charge. For Audi it's something like $700. The point is, whether you get the included maintenance or not, the intervals are the same. It's not like the intervals are sooner if you get the included service vs not getting it.
The M3 is a "special" car, and it has it's own special maintenance needs. It's not a bread and butter car for BMW.
When Mitsubishi brought the EVO to the states, it too had specialized maintenance needs very unlike their other cars. The intervals where much much sooner.
I think that article is based on old tech knowledge, more intensive service for special models, along with suspicion of manufacturers. If you are that suspicious of BMW, then don't buy one.
It's really that simple.