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Thread: Question about BMW's ability to support the Z8

  1. #1
    Z8 Novice
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    Question about BMW's ability to support the Z8

    I am new to this site, and new to this communication mode, so, please forgive my ignorance. I am a Z 8 owner. In January, I was rearended. BMW NJ fixed my car and did a great job. It took 5 months, which was interesting..but what concerned me was at the end they really had to scramble to get parts to finish the job. Does anyone have any insight into the question of whether 3-5 years from now BMW will be able to continue to supply parts for the Z 8. I ask because this car is my "driver".

    Palmer Madden, California, owner of a 2001 Z 8.

  2. #2
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    Fist off, welcome! I can't really speak to how well BMW will support the car down the road, but many parts are shared with common models. Where was your car repaired? One of the ARCs? Or just your dealers favorite body shop? Just curious.

  3. #3
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    Norcal.....I am so ignorant about this process....I hope that NORCAL is indeed your "handle"...and I even hope the word "handle" is appropriate. Anyway, here goes. When I was hit I took it to the Concord CA dealer. They reported that a flange on the frame was "broken"...whatever that means, and the car had to go back to BMW HJ. Apparently at that facility BMW has the tools/skill to do the aluminum welding that was required. All in all they did a superb job. Our car, which I call Max, looks as good as when we bought him....to my untrained eye. I am ponder though, whether it is foolish for me to keep Max as my daily driver. I was the first registered owner and have driven Max for 10 years. I have had two prior small accidents which were repaired by my local dealer. What concerns me is that 3 years from now someone could rear end me and (because I can't get parts) the car would really only be worth salvage value. I figure that there must be some lore among owners about this. I have tried in three different ways to get an answer from BMW...and received only the sounds of silence. BMW certainly knows the answer to this question. They have parts inventories and they surely could make an estimate. But so far, my efforts at finding an answer have come up clueless. Palmer

  4. #4
    Hi Palmer,

    Interesting question, does the future price of the parts exceed the value of the appreciating Z8 resulting in a car being declared totalled by an insurance company after an accident?

    In the literature that BMW published when the Z8 was released it committed to a 50-year part supply. The oversight of the Z8 parts is now in the hands of BMW Classics, and while there has been shortages of rear tail lights in Europe that has been corrected. I have a door sill on back order that's approaching its 1 year anniversary... I happily drive my car with a minor wave in the door sill.

    How many miles have you put on your daily driver? You should join us this October when we will have a SF Bay Area drive and lunch.
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  5. #5
    Team Z8 Charles's Avatar
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    Palmer, I think a lot of us are in awe of an owner that has driven the car daily. Except for group trips, I usually only drive every couple of weeks or so, to exercise all the mechanical and electrical parts and connections, and dream about what it would be like to drive daily. So I think we all hope you continue, as envious as we are. You must really like the way the car drives, not just the impression it creates. I would love to hear your impressions and experiences.

    One of the reasons that I bought the car (aside from knowing I would not lust after another exotic) is that many of the parts are out of the M5 and other BMW's of that era, and one day I might even have the guts to do what you do. The European centric Z8 club, that several of us joined, is regularly in communication with BMW Classics, and very much interested in keeping them to that 50 year promise. This board, started and supported by Andrew in his infinite love and wisdom for the car, is chock full of hints and fixes for all sorts of things, brought to us board members by us board members. We all realize that the car is rare, and we all want to do the sensible thing to respect it, but where we find an less expensive way to do that, you will find it here. There is also a distinctive lack of the bravado and silliness I see on other boards. So I hope you become active and participate as a board member, as I imagine your experience with the car would offer a lot to us.

    All that said, if Ed's experience becomes more common, and we end up having to specially fabricate some parts that are unique to the car in order to drive and enjoy it, we will begin to lose non-collector owners.
    Charles Guerin
    AH61406 - Titanium Silver/ /Black

  6. #6
    Beyond the Valley of Z8 Madness Z-acht's Avatar
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    Palmer, welcome! I just checked BMW classic and the complete rear part is still in stock with BMW classic.
    Ton
    1 of the 71 original Dutch sold cars (jetblack/red)

  7. #7
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    EDEZ8: Here is the information I have. After several months of the repair process by BMW NJ (which I was told was the only place in the US that could do the work) I was told that they came up 3 parts short. All three parts were lenses on the rear bumper....I assume the two rear lights and the fog light. At first we were told that BMW was going to restart a production line to supply the missing 3 parts and we would have them in 4 months. Then, several weeks later, we were told "mirabile dictum" that BMW had a Z8 in a museum from which they were going to pull these three parts and put them on our car (which we call "Max"). I guess, but do not know, that BMW's idea was to get out car back to us ASAP and then, when the new production line is working, to replace the parts on the Museum car. As you can imagine, this whole 5 month plus process has given me pause about whether we can continue driving the car. In the 10 years we have owned in we have had 3 accidents, all caused by others. The car has 77,000 miles on it. We are maintained it perfectly. It looks great. We really love driving it...but...? Palmer

  8. #8
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    Charles: I have owned many a "semi" exotic in my day...but always as drivers. I am not willing to devote the time it takes to make a hobby out of maintaining the car. So, while I am still pondering what to do, I am now leaning towards selling "Max". It will be a sad day. I am 70 this year and I doubt I will buy another. Palmer

    - - - Updated - - -

    Ton: All I can tell you is that I was really "on it" communicating with BMW NJ on a regular basis. They told me : (a) we do not have the parts ;(b) BMW is going to reopen a production line to produce the parts and you will get them in 4 months and then, at the end (c) we are taking three parts off a car we have at a museum and are installing them on your car. That is what they told me. Palmer

  9. #9
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    Friends: I have new and most reliable information. And the news is Most Excellent. It was BMW North America that just completed the repair of our car. I was exchanging e-mails with an executive of that company about my concern as to whether we would be able to get parts for the next 5-10 years. (Note: I picked that time period...it was not dictated to me by BMW...so...I did not ask them about a longer time period). Anyway, just this minute I finally got an answer to my question. For several months after I asked the question I was told only that the executive was looking into it. But now: TA DA...I have the answer. Here is what the executive sent today to me: " Hopefully in the next 5-10 years you will be accident free. However in the event of an accident, please know we will be able to provide parts. " This is really great news for me and my wife. I now think we shall be able to drive Max every day, as has been our practice. Palmer

  10. #10
    Thank you for describing your experiences with BMW NA and the parts update. With the news on the parts supply, I hope that you continue to enjoy your Z8 in good health!
    My Best,

    Ed

    2002 Z8 Jet Black//Sport Red
    2012 SLS AMG Obsidian Black/Classic Red

  11. #11
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    That is a good confirmation of their commitment. Thanks for relaying their response! What city are you in?

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