E39 BMW M5…. Still fast, still sleek.
When we think about the year, 2012, its easy to wonder where all the time has gone. When things dated 2002 for example are already 10 years old, its hard to imagination how far we have come since then. Since 2003, BMW has introduced 2 new M5 models, each with more power than the last. But lets not forget about 2003, because at the time the M5 was the car to have!
The E39 M5 features a 4.9L V8 with an absurd 400 HP. Coupled with the luxurious interior, plenty of legroom in the back, and a solid 6-speed manual transmission, the M5 was a well rounded car that would absolutely knock your socks off.
Well, now that it is 9 years old, you can own a M5 for a fraction of the price! Prices average around 20k depending on many factors, but at the end of the day you get a 400 HP luxury sedan for the price of a Honda Accord! Thats just nuts!
Before you go and say “well I dont need an M5, I’d be happy with an Accord” I encourage you to stop and think about that. While some people would be happy with the Accord, many would also love to feel the torque from that incredible V8 or hear the quad exhaust drone as you put your foot down on the interstate entry ramp. You just cant beat the smile you get when you turn the key and hear that V8 turn over in the morning, because BMW has done the impossible: given you a fun car that you can also put the family in without sacrificing comfort or trunk space.
The M5 features a first for BMW: Drive by Wire. What that means for you is instant throttle response as the computer opens the 8 individual throttle bodies faster than your foot could have on its own. Drive By Wire has become standard in every BMW ever since, and they certainly started it off right with the M5.
The engine has a 7000 RPM redline, and you feel the umph of the torque as soon as you get above 2000, so be careful letting your foot slip as you cruise down the highway! Perhaps one of the only limitations of the M5 is that it doesn’t get the most respectable gas mileage… feeding 8 hungry cylinders does take some fuel so you have to make the trade off between exhilarating performance and MPG’s.
All in all, I love the E39 M5. The feel of that V8 is something that not many new cars can replicate. Its smooth yet powerful and really shows you whose boss with all of the usable power. For it’s size, the car is very nimble and drives remarkably smoothly while still being able to take a corner at impressive speeds without even thinking twice (You might want to make sure your rear passengers have their seat belts on first though!). The car fails to show its age anywhere, its both as nimble and as responsive as you would expect any ///M car to be.
So if you are looking for a affordable performance car for around $20,000 but still want to be able to take people for a road trip comfortable, the E39 M5 should certainly be worth a fair bit of consideration.
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