Common BMW N57 Engine Problems (30d, 35d, 40d, 50d)

Are you interested in buying a BMW with the N57 engine and want to learn more about the BMW N57 engine problems? Well, if that is the case, you are at the right place because there will be a lot to cover.

This engine recently became infamous for catching fire. Namely, the UK police decided to retire cars with this engine because they could and would actually catch fire. But you shouldn’t panic, later on, we are going to elaborate on this in-depth.

First, we are going to learn the basic specs of the BMW N57 engine, then we are going to cover the common BMW N57 engine problems. Once we clear that out of our way, we will discuss the models that have this engine and finally, we will answer some frequently asked questions.

Basic BMW N57 Engine Specs

Now let’s learn more about the specs of this N57 engine. Specs are really important when it comes to deciding whether this engine is a good purchase or not.

As you probably know, this is an inline-6 engine that uses common rail diesel injection. The engine block and head are made from aluminum and the displacement of the engine is 3.0L. There are six different variations of this engine. So, let’s cover them in depth.

  • N57D30U0 5 Series, 3 Series
    This version is rated at 150 kW (201hp) @ 4,000 rpm and 450 N-m (332lb-ft) @ 1,750-2500 rpm.
  • N57D30O0 3 Series, 5 Series, 7 Series, X5, X6
    This engine is rated at 180 kW (241hp) @ 4,000 rpm and 540 N-m (398lb-ft) @ 1,750-3,000 rpm.
  • N57D30O1 5 Series, 4 Series, 7 Series, X3, and X5
    This engine is rated at 190 kW (255hp) @ 4,000 rpm and 560 N-m (413lb-ft) @ 1,500-3,000 rpm
  • N57D30T0 5 Series, 7 Series, X5 and X6
    This engine is rated at 225 kW (302hp) @ 4,400 rpm and 600 N-m (443lb-ft) @ 1,500-2,500 rpm
  • N57D30T1 4 Series, 5 Series, 6 Series, X3, X4, X5, and X6
    This engine is rated at 230 kW (308hp) @ 4,400 rpm and 630 N-m (465lb-ft) @ 1,500-2,500 rpm
  • N57S 5 Series, 7 Series, X5, and X6
    This version is rated at 280 kW (375hp) @ 4,000-4500 rpm and 740 N-m (546lb-ft) @ 2,000-3,000 rpm.

Common BMW N57 Engine Problems

Common BMW N57 engine problems include:

  • Crankshaft Pulley Failure
  • Glow Plug Failure
  • Swirl Flap Failure
  • Engine Catching Fire
  • EGR Clogging Up
  • DPF Clogging Up
  • Turbo Failure
  • Injector Failure

So, we briefly learned more about the common problems of this engine, now let’s further elaborate on them in the following chapters.

Crankshaft Pulley Failure

The first very common problem with this engine is the crankshaft pulley failure. This pulley can fail on higher miles.

When the pulley fails, you will lose your accessories. It is not something catastrophic because it is not the timing chain pulley. But it can cause a lot of headaches for you.

So, monitoring the condition of the pulley and seeing if there is some cracking is the way to go in order to avoid some headaches in the long run.

Glow Plug Relay Failure

Another very common failure point with this engine is the situation with the glow plugs. As you probably know, diesel engines are using these glow plugs to heat up the air-to-fuel mixture in the engine.

It is very likely that the relay will fail at some point and you will lose all 6 of these glow plugs. The solution to this problem is simply to swap the relay with a new one.

This is a fairly cheap part that you can get for a good deal. Sometimes the glow plugs themselves can fail as well.

So, to sum things up, if one of them fails it’s the specific glow plug, if all of them fail it is because of the relay.

Swirl Flap Failure

Another common failure point on this engine is the swirl flaps. As you probably know, there are flaps that open and close to allow air to enter the engine.

These flaps can often get covered with gunk and carbon deposits. So, they can get stuck or completely fail on this engine.

The problem can be fixed by cleaning or rebuilding the intake manifold, or by replacing this intake manifold with a new one. A new intake manifold will fix this problem permanently.

Engine Catching Fire

Another very common problem with the N57 engine is the engine catching fire. These engines tend to catch fire often.

But not as you would expect. The engines that catch fire are often left idling for hours and then pushed to the max for half an hour or more on the highway. We listed prolonged idling as one of the things you should not be doing with a diesel engine in our guide on how to use a diesel car.

So, as you can guess, only cops do these things. Especially in the UK where these cars are used by the police. They had problems with their cars catching on fire quite often.

EGR Clogging Up

The next common problem with this engine is the EGR valve which is very prone to clogging up. This problem is a headache for a good deal of diesel engine owners.

So, it is one of the expected issues when you purchase a diesel engine. The solution for this problem will require that you replace the clogged-up EGR with a new one. Many people clean them but this EGR will never be the same as it was.

DPF Clogging Up

Another quite common problem in diesel engines is the situation when the DPF clogs up. DPF is the diesel particulate filter. This is an important emissions device.

This DPF is regenerating itself and basically cleans itself. But if you drive the car in the city and on very short distances, this DPF will clog up. The only way around the problem is by replacing the DPF or cleaning the DPF.

Turbo Failure

Turbo failures are also very common on these engines. This is just one of the wear-and-tear items. These engines are easily pushed above 300,000 miles and when you go this far, a turbo rebuild will be required.

The bearings inside simply fail and the shaft will start to wobble causing weird sounds coming from the turbine. Luckily, there are a ton of shops that rebuild these items.

Injector Failure

And the last common problem with the N57 engine that we are going to cover is injector failure. This is also one of the wear and tear items of this engine

Diesel injectors tend to fail if you push them to great lengths. This is why a rebuild or replacement is essential if you want them to be working as they did previously.

It is expensive but that’s how things are with diesel engines, turbines, injectors, and glow plugs are the ones that suffer the most.

Which BMW Models Have The N57 Engine

Now let’s learn more about the applications where you can find the N57 engine. In other words, let’s see what models have this engine.


  • 2010-2011 F10/11 525d
  • 2010-2013 E90/91/92/93 325d


  • 2008-2013 E90/91/92/93 330d/330xd
  • 2010-2011 F10/11 530d
  • 2009-F07 530d GT/530d xDrive GT
  • 2008-2012 F01/02 730d/730Ld
  • 2010-2013 E70 X5 xDrive30d
  • 2010-2014 E71 X6 xDrive30d


  • 2011-2016 F10/F11 530d
  • 2011 F25 X3 xDrive30d
  • 2011-2016 F15 X5 xDrive35d
  • 2012-2019 F30/F31 330d
  • 2014- F32/33/36 430d
  • 2012-2015 F01/F02 730d/730Ld


  • 2010-2011 F10/11 535d
  • 2009-2017 F07 535d GT
  • 2009-2015 F01 740d/740d xDrive
  • 2010-2013 E70 X5 xDrive40d
  • 2010-2014 E71 X6 xDrive40d


  • 2011-2016 F10/F11 535d
  • 2011-2018 F12/F13 640d
  • 2011- F25 X3 xDrive35d
  • 2013-2019 F30/F31 335d
  • 2014- F32/F33/F36 435d
  • 2014- F26 X4 xDrive35d
  • 2014- F15 X5 xDrive40d
  • 2015- F16 X6 xDrive40d


  • 2012-2017 F10/F11 M550d xDrive
  • 2012-2015 F01 750d/Ld xDrive
  • 2012-2013 E70 X5 M50d
  • 2012-2014 X6 M50d
  • 2013-2018 F15 X5 M50d
  • 2015-2018 F16 X6 M50d


Now that we covered the BMW N57 engine problems, let’s sum up our conclusions and see more about whether this is a good engine or not.

Just like the M57 BMW Diesel engine, we can honestly say that this is pretty much a bulletproof engine. An engine that could run for a lifetime if you maintain it properly. And this is the case with many diesel engines. They have far higher longevity compared to gasoline engines.

What is interesting to note about this engine is that it has some problems. Namely, injectors, turbochargers, swirl flaps, glow plug relay, and crank pulley failures. These are the most common issues. Besides these issues that appear on higher miles, the engine is pretty good.


What Are The Common N57 Engine Problems?

Common problems with this engine include the crankshaft pulley that can fall apart. Other problems include the glow plug relay that can go bad, turbochargers and injectors that can fail from wear and tear, and problems with DPF and EGR are fairly common. Overall, these are the major issues that could arise.

Is The N57 Engine Reliable?

This engine is a fairly reliable one. If maintained well, it could easily last for a lifetime. Much longer compared to a gas-powered engine. And many of the problems on this engine are generally created by wear and tear, not that there is a problem with the engine internals.

About The Author