Last updated November 9, 2001 - recent updates in RED.
Here are two stories about members of our mailing lists receiving a new block with their "new" used cars.
Story 1 - New block done out of warranty: "My wife and I recently purchased a 94 530it wagon. When we first drove the car it was obviously not performing correctly and shook at idle. Thanks to your site, we became fully informed of the nikasil issue. The car had 56k, but was past the 5 year warranty period. The leak down test was performed, and it failed. They agreed to install a new block, thinking that BMWNA would cover the replacement even though it was out of warranty. The dealership installed a new block, but the price of the car increased $3000 as BMW was not going to cover the block replacement."
In this case, the $3,000 added to the price of the car was a "bargain" as the cost for labor and materials for a new block is closer to $5,000. Though they could have walked away from the purchase, they elected to buy the car at the increased price as the car also had two new catalytic converters along w/the new block.
Story 2 - New block done within warranty: "New block: I drive past the Ann Arbor, MI dealership, Auto-Strasse every once in a while, just to see whats in the lot. Generally if there are any E34s I'll stop for a look. Seems like they are always automatics, so I don't normally pay much attention. This one wasn't.
So I went home thinking there was something strange about the V8s in them (couldn't remember what.) Read up on the M60 engine, and just about any other info on 530i.org and went back the next day. Asked the dealer if I could go for a spin: sure. He asked if I knew much about the car, I said I had driven a 525 and a 535. He proceded to tell me the 530 had the V8. I mentioned I had heard there were some problems with the M60 engines (they love it when you know things like chassis and engine designations.) Anyway, his comment was he'd check if the engine had been replaced or not, and he was pretty sure that the 530s wern't really affected - more the 4 litre versions. (*sarcasm* I believe that *sarcasm*)
Anyway, took it for a spin, hit the "kick the back end out button," grinned, made sure you could induce a nice slide through corners like you can with my '02, grinned, and brought it back. The dealer had pulled up the service history and said there was a warranty service at 72k mi. He *guessed* that it was probably a new engine. I asked that he call that dealership and see what it was. Came back the next day and he told me it was an oil pump. I asked him to do the test on the engine and made it quite clear that my buying the car was contingent on it having a new block. (I figured if it didn't fail the test, that qualified under the language from BMWNA saying "OR when it is evident that without this test the customer would lose confidence in his BMW. ")
Anyway I received a call the next day informing me that the car had failed the test, and a new block was on its way. In addition, a new set of OE MXV4s were on their way, and a couple other minor things."
This buyer had the perfect attitude for success - if the car wasn't repaired to his specifications, he was willing to walk away from it.