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  1. #1
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    2 generations beyond The Ultimate Driving Machine

    That's how Motor Trend described the new (F10) 5-Series in their 2011 car of the year issue contenders and finalist article.

    I guess we're not the only ones that think the E39 is the last true "Ultimate Driving Machine" when it comes to the 5-Series.


    Here's a paragraph from the article...

    "Ultimate," as an adjective, means "last or last possible, final," says the Oxford American Dictionary. Of course, BMW's marketing wizards were thinking about "ultimate" as a noun ("best achievable or imaginable") when they wrote The Ultimate Driving Machine tagline, which applies nicely to E39 5 Series of two generations ago.

    The 2011 F10 5 Series, which includes the hatchback GT and four-door sedan, continues in the tradition of the E60 that followed the E39. The F10 is essentially a shortened 7 Series.


    link to page on the 2011 F10:
    Two generations beyond The Ultimate Driving Machine


    And in case anybody's interested, here's a link to the full article:
    2011 Motor Trend Car of the Year: Contenders and Finalists

    Vin

    2003 530i (Sport Package) Build Date: 02/03
    Titanium Gray over Black
    Shadowline Trim
    5-Speed Manual Transmission
    Zeckhausen Modified CDV
    Dinan Upgrades: High Flow Throttle Body, CAI, Stage 3 Software, and Free Flow Exhaust.

    Horsepower: some is good, more is better, TOO MUCH is just right!
    "If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough." ~ Mario Andretti
    "What’s behind you doesn’t matter." ~ Enzo Ferrari


  2. #2
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    Notice the Hyundai V8 is priced nearly

    the same as the 550?? I thought Hyundai would be at least $15K lower. Not that I'm in the market for a new car or anything, but it would be a no-brainer between those two.

    dave
    03 540i6

  3. #3
    Craig in Canada
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    I'm looking E90 if the time comes....


  4. #4
    Crusader
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    Re: I'm looking E90 if the time comes....

    As I'm getting to the point where a family car isn't required, the 328 coupe intrigues me. My younger brother has one and it's hard to fault as a machine to drive.

    As a machine to maintain, I have my doubts. I've not heard good things about the latest 3-series out of warranty (OTOH, they're dirt cheap CPO cars). The E39 has its many quirks, but they're well documented and usually can be DIY'd if you're so inclined.

    I'm closing in on 100K and after the next major cycle of maintenance (cooling system, shocks and bushings, O2 sensors, etc), I think it should be good to go for another 100K with regular freshening of fluids.

    I haven't driven a car I'd RATHER have than my E39 yet. And it and the E46 might be the last of the true ultimate driving machines.

  5. #5
    Ed CT
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    +1 Considering an E46 for the wife's replacement


  6. #6
    Crusader
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    Yep, the E46 is a good one ...

    It has it's specific issues, not unlike our cars, but I think the only catch 22 is the rear subframe failures in some cars. It's fixable, was even a post-warranty fix (don't know the terms), but otherwise a fine car. The ZHP coupe is the collectible one.

  7. #7
    Blaumax
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    Need Jim Cash, Jim Lev and other...

    experts to be able to provide their expertise on the E92 and I'll be comfortable to jump into the coupe when the time comes to replace my 528i in about 3-4 years when it hit 240K miles. Or maybe they will let me hop back on this board with an occasional E92 question.

  8. #8
    Ed CT
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    I did some lurking on the E46 board...

    Someone had asked the same general question we would have asked: What major repairs yada yada... (see the link) There were a few good responses. But, yeah, I hear ya - need some experts on DIY stuff.

    Seems similar to most DIY stuff we do here. Although I'd like to find out about the rear subframe issue that Crusader mentioned. Crusader-any more info on this? I had heard about this earlier, but don't know if it's a sub-frame hardware attachment issue or the sub-frame itself. I'll do some lurking and ask a few questions. I seem to remember Mike Miller's Roundel column mentioning htis issue.

    Otherwise, I'm thinking it's a technology somewhere between the E39 and E60 - need to look into it a little further.

    Speaking generally, the E39 is perfect for me - it's a great car to drive, easy to work on and (with this board's expertice) diagnose. If the E46 is not too far advanced technically, I might be there.

  9. #9
    Blaumax
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    There might be a sub-frame reinforcement...

    kit that's available. I don't recall the exact 3 Series generation but there's a sub-frame reinforcement kit available.

  10. #10
    Ed CT
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    oops....Here's the link


  11. #11
    Bimmer5Michael
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    You won't miss the e39 at that point

    My ex and one of my sons just purchased 2006 E92s and they are great cars.

    The ex got the 325 with auto, CPO, premium, fold down rear seats metallic blackm on anthrasite leather and it is a very solid very nice car.
    80,000 miles and very solid and still tight like an aging e39.

    The son got the 330 6 speed sport/premium/cold weather pkg fold down rear seats metallic black on tan, CPO, 57,000 miles.

    The 330 feels much like the e39 540 not as much torque or power but for a normally aspirated 6, I am pretty sure it will give the 540 the scare of it's life if not faster. I have already pushed it pretty hard. It is only slightly smaller than the e39 and if you want the torque and power of the 540 get the 535.

    And for those of you going copue or convertable do not overlook the 135. The 135 is probably the closest thing to a traditionally thought of "Ultimate Driving Machine" It's scary giggly fun but is smaller but is the closest thing to a 911 as you can get other then the E92 M3 and thats a whlenuther subject.

    I think if I were replacing the e39 with another BMW it would be the last year E60 5 series v8 with sport pkg. But having said that the E92 would be just as comfortable.

  12. #12
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    They R probably better than the new crop of cars (

    At least there is some history on that model, don't think that are much better than our E39's.
    Here's the latest from Consumer Reports that was just published in Roundel. You can't beleive everything you read, however that far down on the list does say something.
    At least we are ahead of Audi, which isn't saying much.


  13. #13
    Craig in Canada
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    What is "2010 reliability"?

    Is this how many times brand new cars need to go to the dealer for squeaks, rattles or the occasional "real" problem? Or is this a view of the last 5 years which is only taking place in 2010.

    If the former, I find it mostly useless and always have. How can they gauge any kind of "reliability" in only a year? How are they indicating the severity of the issue? I think it includes everything, so a car with more things to break is going to score worse than basic transportation. I'm not saying BMWs don't have issues - far from it - it's just not something as precise to quantify as "-22%".

    I would say that my E39 has been the best car owned by any of me and my immediate family regardless of country of origin (including Japanese). Most reliable, fewest failures, highest durability ("most like new during long term ownership") and has high capabilities as well. None of the other vehicles on the list were worth putting PS2s on, for instance, except my Porsche. My Porsche was very good too after I got done with a lot of fairly minor things that the PO "let go". No major issues and lots of performance, but I didn't keep it nearly as long as I've had my E39.


  14. #14
    BG
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    sub-frame reinforcement...for E36?

    I think the problem with cracks in the subframe or the connection is on the E36 series. I recall reading in Roundel that the subrfame and rear underbody should be inspected rigorously if considering a used E36.

  15. #15
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    Subframe problems....the welds to the trunk floor(

    start pulling away, the sheet metal flexes and starts to tear. Here's more info if any of you want to look it up.
    Service Code: 41119101
    Description: E46 Cracking in rear axle support
    Service Code: 41009385
    Description: E46 Inspection of rear axle carrier (on customer request)
    TIS article # 41 03 03 025 - Fractures on rear-axle support E46.

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...9948066992482#

    I've seen it on a friends Dinan Z3M, he fixed it himself and then sold the car.
    The subframe bushings also can give out allowing the subframe to move.

  16. #16
    Crusader
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    Re: They R probably better than the new crop of cars (


  17. #17
    Crusader
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    Reliability vs Driveability

    It's unfortunate that most of the cars that are "up there" in reliability, except Porsche, don't exactly move me. I've always liked Honda/Acura for their solid qualities, but they handle only marginally better than their Toyota/Lexus brethren ... In other words, nothing like a BMW.

    Well, I could bite the bullet and find a nice used 997, not sure what maintaining one would be like ... I suspect expensive ... but if all the basic stuff doesn't fail and it's just consumables (fluids, filters, and wear items), it might be a viable alternative.

  18. #18
    Ed CT
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    WOW. That doesn't look like rot, either!

    That appears to be the structural design wasn't robust enough to handle the car's stress outputs. I also read that Turner Motorsports is offering a reinforcement kit - seems incredibly ridiculous that an aftermarket fix for a structural design issue exists for car of BMWs stature.

  19. #19
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    I think Turner is using the kit supplied by BMW (m

    The torn sheet metal (I think) is the result of the welds coming loose. I didn't look under my friends M Z3, but did look at the floor in the trunk. All of the spot welds were popped loose. He got some bar stock to lay over the length of the loose area and bolted things back together.

  20. #20
    Ed CT
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    So, a DIY fix? Interesting.


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