Are KBB's 5 Certified Pre-Owned BMW Picks Worth Bringing Home?

  • Kelley's Blue Book recently released a list of recommended Certified Pre-Owned BMWs
  • Among touring cars, the 2019 3 Series is a solid choice overall, but if you want a 2019 5 Series, buy a six- or eight-cylinder model.
  • As for KBB Among BMW's SUV picks, the 2019 X3 received mediocre reliability scores, while the 2019 X5 is an excellent suggestion, and the 2019 X7 is roomier but far less efficient.
  • Saving money on nearly new luxury cars is a time-honored buying strategy, but it's risky. Sure, your used BMW is cheap now, but what happens when something complicated breaks? Fortunately, there is a way to have peace of mind: a certified used car. It's more expensive, but theoretically a certified pre-owned BMW should be no problem. And if not, well, there's a guarantee. But does that mean you should consider getting one of Kelley's recently recommended Blue Book BMW CPOs?

    A Used 2019 3 Series is an Excellent Certified Pre-Owned BMW

    Now, just because a manufacturer like BMW sticks a "certified pre-owned" sticker on one of its cars doesn't mean it transforms that car like magic. An unreliable used BMW will not necessarily become more reliable automatically, although it does have a warranty.

    However, that is not the case with KBB 's top choice, the 2019 BMW 3 Series. While the 2020 3 Series is somewhat problematic, the 2019 model is not. Consumer reports gave it a perfect reliability score, which is all the more impressive as BMW redesigned it for 2019. First-year models are generally less reliable than their predecessors.

    However, opting for a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW 3 Series doesn't just save you money. Because it is functionally identical to the current 3 Series, the 2019 model offers the same level of space, technology and performance. And speaking of performance, the 2019 3 Series returned a sizable amount of athleticism to the historic nameplate, KBB Notes.

    One of the downsides of getting a used 2019 BMW 3 Series is the limited choice of powertrains. BMW only offered it in 2.0-liter 330i turbo-four form. But it packs up to 255 hp (wagons have 248 hp) and an optional trail handling package with upgraded brakes and an electronically controlled differential. And while it wasn't standard, the 2019 330i offered Apple CarPlay.

    In short, this is one certified pre-owned BMW KBB suggestion worth considering.

    If You Want a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW 5 Series, the More Cylinders the Better

    Kelley Blue Book Recommends Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW 5 Series

    As stated earlier, one of the benefits of buying a Certified Pre-Owned BMW is a factory warranty. True, it is only for one year, but the mileage is unlimited. Also, like other manufacturers, BMW only lists these cars for sale after inspecting them and replacing broken components. And given the Series 5's often high maintenance costs, it definitely helps.

    However, don't overlook KBB 's suggestion to get a used 2019 5 Series. Although it doesn't have all the bells and whistles of the 2022 5-Series, BMW has added a bunch of standard tech to the redesigned 2019 model. You get Apple CarPlay, front and rear parking sensors, navigation and a wide selection of advanced driver assistance safety features. Granted, BMW did offer things like gesture control as an option, which may seem fancy and expensive to fix to some. But RS gave it a reliability score of 3/5 – not great, but not terrible.

    Plus, despite being more luxurious than sporty, the 2019 5 Series is still reasonably athletic, KBB reports. And it lacks neither space nor comfort. Also, while some luxury sedans can use electronic dampers in their adaptive suspensions, the 2019 5 Series has a mechanical version.

    If you're shopping for a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW 5 Series, however, KBB recommends skipping. The four-cylinder 530i and 530e (plug-in hybrids) might be efficient on paper, but the IRL engine has to be worked hard. By contrast, the 335bhp turbocharged 540i six-cylinder is smooth and “muscular.” KBB says. BMW's hallmark is the straight-six, after all. Plus, it's more efficient than the M550i xDrive's 456-hp twin-turbo V8.

    So, provided you're willing to pay for post-warranty maintenance, a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW 5 Series has a lot to offer.

    You might need the extended warranty with the 2019 X3

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    Remember that certified pre-owned status doesn't immediately make a car more reliable? This is undoubtedly true of the next used vehicle on KBB , the 2019 BMW X3.

    On the plus side, the BMW X3 has low maintenance costs for a luxury SUV. Plus, it's surprisingly fun to drive in both AWD xDrive and RWD sDrive forms. It also rolls comfortably and thanks to an 8-inch ground clearance, it can do light off-roading. And for 2019, BMW made front and rear parking sensors standard, along with forward collision warning.

    However, RS gave the 2019 X3 a reliability score of 2/5, indicating below-average reliability. Also, MotorTrend 's long-term X3 developed strange suspension creaks and a leaky roof after only 10,000 miles. Plus, while KBB says the "minimalist" interior is spacious and upscale, MT found parts of the cabin rather cheap.

    Admittedly, the long-term MT X3 was a 2018 model, freshly redesigned. Additionally, the goal of BMW's Certified Pre-Owned program is to detect these issues before taking delivery. And despite the reliability concerns, MT enjoyed its time with the X3. Plus, as KBB notes, the X3 is BMW's best-selling vehicle.

    Still, the 2019 X3 is a Certified Pre-Owned BMW that could benefit from a look from a second set of independent trained eyes.

    The Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW X5 Deserves Its KBB But Award

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    While getting a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 X3 might be slightly risky, the next BMW SUV KBB recommends should be a safer bet. It's the 2019 BMW X5, which has the highest KBB rating of the five vehicles listed here. Also, Consumer Reports calls it "one of the best vehicles we've ever tested."

    Granted, RS also noted that the 2019 X5 has intermediate reliability, likely because BMW redesigned it that year. However, it's a significant step up in this regard from the problem-prone X5 of the previous generation. Also, while the X3 didn't earn an above-average RS reliability score until 2021, the X5 got it in 2020.

    Moreover, the 2019 BMW X5 has a more luxurious interior than the previous generation. It also has more standard safety features, a better infotainment system, and even offers an optional off-road package. And you can get it with a third row, however KBB notes that such X5s are somewhat rare. Plus, it's really fun to drive, with a "smooth" chassis and "nimble...responsive" handling. MT says.

    Unfortunately, a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 X5 will likely cost you more than the previously described BMWs. Also, MT found some of its ADAS features could use a bit more polishing. And, like the X3, the X5's reliability improved after MY 2019.

    Still, KBB has the right idea on this one. If you want a comfortable luxury BMW SUV with like-new tech at a discount with a warranty, you could do a lot worse than a 2019 X5.

    The 2019 X7 offers plenty of space and luxury, but quickly consumes gas

    Although a 2019 X5 has an optional third row, it's not the roomiest on the market. So if you need a three-row luxury SUV, KBB 's Certified Pre-Owned BMW choice is the 2019 X7.

    Along with plenty of space, the 2019 X7 also offers plenty of luxury. As BMW's premium SUV – and its first three-row – it has a ton of standard features. Even the base model features adaptive air suspension, double-glazed glass, leather upholstery and a full ADAS suite. And the options list includes things like crystal-clear glass controls and an illuminated panoramic sunroof.

    However, a used BMW X7 is not a perfect fit for a luxury SUV. For one thing, it's basically a luxury family bus, so it's not the most nimble vehicle, MT Notes. Second, while the base 335-hp turbocharged inline-six isn't as weak as some think, it's more fuel-efficient than the twin-turbo V8. Yes, the V8 produces 456 hp, but it also burns 4-5 mpg less than the straight-six and both drink premium fuel. Plus, despite its three family rows, the X7's power seats are frustratingly slow.

    With that and today's gas prices, a Certified Pre-Owned 2019 BMW X7 might be too SUV for some. But it's a KBB suggestion to keep in mind if you really need that many SUVs.