In summary, vehicle had history of engine light-on events, uncommanded engine runaway at 70-80 mph, was over 2.5 months in Service Department, discovered cylinder heads that were full of gunk and carbon build up, no root cause provided about vehicle's engine safety issues, communications like "we do not want to sell your car to any of our Customer, they may have the same problems you had", and then vehicle was provided back to Customer as if nothing ever happened . . . . business as usual. No Customer restoration process, no extended vehicle warranty offered, no equal trade into a (safer) other vehicle with similar mileage, just a Sales person trying to "take me for a ride" and sticking her food in her mouth.
I bought an all new 2010 335d at Joe Self and experienced a history of engine light-on events prior to potential catastrophic uncommanded engine runaway. On Jan 13, 2013 I was driving vehicle at cruise control at speed setting 83 mph on turnpike at 11PM. Suddenly engine light came on, followed by a significant reduction in engine power output. Engine was unable to handle power requirement to keep cruise control speed at 83 and vehicle's speed dropped to low 70-ies mph. ECU did not disengage cruise control while engine power was reduced. Suddenly vehicle accelerated uncommanded back to the set cruise control speed of 83 mph. Very dangerous and scary situation. My (1) disappointment about the car's engine reliability and (2) worries about post-warranty life (only 40,000 miles!) now transitioned into serious concern about the car's safety. As a result of this scary experience and obvious engine defect, I brought in my car to Joe Self service on Jan 16th 2013. I also provided a letter on that day with the request to receive a formal response as how (1) BMW plans to restore my confidence in the safety & reliability of this vehicle and (2) have a discussion about the options going forward. I never received any formal response from neither local dealer, regional service manager nor BMWUSA.
After two months of Joe Self's service "fishing" - apparently they were unable to diagnose a root cause and replaced one part after another - and me feeling less and less comfortable to get into a car that apparently had undetectable safety issues, I asked the service manager Chuck to assist me again with looking into other options. He never did.
I then called Joe Self himself and left a message to see if he was interested to keep me in the BMW family. That call led to the same service manager Chuck calling me again, who promised that a sales person would call me. No sales person ever called me.
After eight days of waiting for a sales person to call me, I used my own personal relationships get a phone number and to call Mr. Skillings (apparently Chuck's boss), who consequently put me in touch with Robin Zinda (BMW Center Manager). I explained my situation and she provided me with some car options to get into a different used vehicle. At that point in time I was not picky about what vehicle. Sadly, the offers from Robin seemed nothing more than NADA average trade value for my 2010 335d vehicle and a few thousand dollars more than NADA Certified values for the replacement vehicle (in this case a 2011 335Xi). Yes, they were trying to "take me for a ride". When I pointed out that this offer was unacceptable in this particular situation and challenged the apples & oranges value trade provided, Robin's response was "Oh no, your car will go to the auction. We do not want to sell your car to any of our Customer, they may have the same problems you had".
Ironically, vehicle was returned to Customer on March 27, after 70 days of repairs and troubleshooting. Customer was shown pictures by Service Manager of cylinder head, one of the many parts that was replaced, that was full of gunk and carbon build up. Cylinder head was apparently mailed to Germany for further analysis. Service manager stated that this vehicle was probably not the only vehicle with this problem. . . . . He also stated that my car was the longest in service at BMW under his tenure and requested me to go gentle on a survey that I was apparently going to receive.
No root cause was ever provided about vehicle's engine light, significant carbon build up in cylinder head and safety issues.
Bottom line, very disappointing experience . . . not only from a vehicle reliability/safety point of view, but especially how a Customer restoration process - or shall I say the complete lack of - was handled by the Joe Self team . . . . while trying to "take me for a ride". They should be ashamed.