Are BMW’s Good For High Mileage?

A high mileage car is one that’s been put through its paces a lot. Every car has a mileage counter, and high mileage vehicles have clocked up hundreds of thousands of miles in their lifetime. Keeping that in mind, how do BMW’s far as high mileage vehicles?

If we’re talking generally, then there’s nothing that really negatively distinguishes a BMW from most other cars. What we mean is that they’re as good for high mileage as basically any other car on the market. You shouldn’t run into any specific issues with an old and used BMW, and a new one will last for a very long time if bought today.

Of course, there are other considerations to take into account. Mainly, the model and specifications of the BMW. It’s believed that ones with the best engines will end up being better for high mileage than the stock models. There’s a reason that BMW trims and models vary in price; you get what you pay for. Most of the time, if you pay a bit extra for a better engine or improved specs, then this translates into a longer mileage life.

How many miles does a BMW last?

Again, it mostly depends on what car you’re looking at. Also, you have to take into account the maintenance schedule of the car. If a BMW has been well looked after and goes for servicing regularly, then it should last well over 100,000 miles. Some owners have even had a BMW for around the 250,000-mile mark.

So, they last for a pretty long time when they’re taken care of. The other thing to add to this is that it depends on where you live. If the driving conditions are terrible where you live, then expect a BMW to last closer to the 100,000-mile mark, possibly even below it. Bad conditions include beaten up roads, lots of snow in winter, and so on. 

What is considered high mileage for a BMW?

Old BMW engine

While most BMW’s can last between 100,000 – 250,000 miles, high mileage is actually considered slightly lower than this. Most dealers will avoid stocking BMW’s that are above 100,000, and some even consider 60-80,000 to be high mileage for these cars.

Therefore, if you’re looking at BMW’s that have around 60-80,000 miles on the clock, then you’ve entered the high mileage zone. This is something to keep an eye on as it shows you can get high mileage BMW’s with massive differences in how many miles they’ve actually run.

Do BMW’s break down a lot?

When compared to other car manufacturers, BMW cars don’t break down any more than them. They suffer similar issues as most other makes, and a lot depends on how the owner looks after the car. Most people with BMW’s that break down are guilty of being a bit lazy in their approach to maintenance.

With that being said, BMW’s tend to have some common problems that may cause minor break down issues. Mainly, the problems stem from the electronics systems in the cars. Some owners experience issues with electric windows, remote locking, and other electronic elements. Thankfully, the problems are never serious enough for the car to stop working, and they tend to have quick and affordable fixes.

So, as an overall answer to this question, BMW’s don’t break down a lot. If you collected up the average number of breakdowns across all car manufacturers, then you won’t find BMW near the top!

What mileage is too high?

High mileage vehicle
50129394 – car with a high mileage. car dashboard in closeup

We’ve spoken about how many miles a BMW lasts, but what mileage should you look at and be cautious of? 

Generally, if a BMW is pushing 200,000 miles or more, then this could be a bit too high. It’s fine if you’ve had the car for years, but we wouldn’t recommend buying one with this many miles on the clock. The reason is largely that it will most likely only get another 50,000 miles or so before it really starts to come to the end of its life.

Most people average around 12,000 miles per year, so you’ve only got about 4 years of this car before it ends up breaking down all the time.

But, this looks at BMW’s that have been well looked after to reach 200,000 miles in the first place. It’s also a general point made about the entire BMW range. Some cars will probably be beyond their peak at 150,000 miles.

Are BMW’s good after 100k miles?

As we’ve just discussed, anything from 150,000 upwards could be considered too high on the mileage chart for a BMW. Here, you’re getting close to the end of their life cycle. However, you can still buy a BMW in fine condition after 100,000 miles.

The way we see it, you could still get 100,000 or maybe even up to 150,000 miles out of it with good maintenance. Much depends on the condition of the car when you buy it, but if it’s in excellent condition, then there’s no reason you can’t drive it for many years to come.

Yes, you can expect a few trips to the auto repair shop from time to time. But, this is common in all vehicles that pass the 100k mark!

Summary: Are BMW’s good for high mileage?

To round off this article, we’ll summarize everything we’ve discussed. Generally speaking, BMW cars are good for high mileage. They tend to max out at between 150-250,000 miles. So, anything in that range is seen as possibly too high a mileage to warrant buying the car. But, most BMW’s are in the high mileage bracket when they hit 60-80,000 miles. As such, you can see there’s still a long way to go before you hit the ‘too high’ mark.

Bearing all of that in mind, it can be a smart financial decision to get a high mileage BMW as you will own a fantastic car that’s reliable, has miles left in the tank, and is a lot more affordable. 


I'm Scott, a BMW enthusiast and many time owner of these wonderful machines. I'm here to document my experiences with BMW's over the years and hopefully help people out along the way.

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