BMW M5 Saloon







Well, I've gone and done it. Just before Christmas, I bagged a 2001 M5. Thanks for all the advice and stoopid questions beforehand but it seems to have all worked out so far. Nearly didn't happen as the HPI check showed finance outstanding on the vehicle but the AA check did a few phone calls (as part of the service) and the finance was cleared.

The specs are:
2001 Y Plate Facelift model
Le Mans Blue, grey/black interior with titanium trim
Full comms pack (Sat Nav, TV, Siemens phone)
Built in child booster seats
Uprated Hifi with DSP
Rear and side blinds
Full BMWSH with 78,000 miles
No warranty

I found it on the last day on ebay (of all places) after looking for a couple of months on Top Marques etc, and it didn't meet it's reserve price. The owner was local so I popped over to have a look. After an initial scan of the car where I was a bit underwhelmed (cosmetically), I decided to go for it anyway. I was sick and tired of losing money on cars so this seemed like a good price with some built in depreciation (if such a thing ever exists).

Time will tell whether I made the right choice about getting a car with no BMW warranty but with the yearly renewal going up to nearly £1000 and £100 an hour labour rates, I think I'll take my chances with the small amount of miles I do each year.

Interior is a similar layout to the M3 but just bigger everywhere. Nice to have the four doors for the kids aswell as the legroom. The boots huge although I will miss the folding rear seats for the weekend DIY trips. The suspension is a lot smoother and softer than the M3 in addition to the engine note being a lot quieter. So for general everyday family stuff, it's a big thumbs up!
As for the engine, I think that BMW missed some standard equipment off the list when building the M5. It should come standard with a speed detector because beneath it's subtle (re boring) looks, this thing flies. On my drive home, I thought that some of the cars had broken down and stopped on the dual carriageway, I gained on them so fast! With the V8, it is so effortless in how it pulls, there are no sensory indicators that tell you how fast you are actually going. I thought I was doing 55 ish and was closer to 90! On the M3, the exhaust note gives the game away whereas on the M5, it justs pulls and doesn't stop. So as far as the engine goes, it's another thumbs up.

(bad is perhaps not the best word to use here)?
The car feels big and that's probably because it is. Particularly around town, you can really feel the weight as you go round the corners. I don't trust the car's grip and am constantly aware of the bulk as well as being wary of the weather conditions. Perhaps in time, with the better weather, I will be able to push the car more but at the moment, it's very much tip-toe time.

The exhaust note is a little muted - has no sense of occasion. With the M3, you would slow down just to hear the exhaust again but it's perhaps a little quiet for me.

The Sat Nav software is very old and not that intuitive so that will be updated to the latest ASAP.
The 18" wheels look too small for the car (IMO) so would like to change them for some 19" but in a similar style. There is kerb damage on all 4 corners so rather than spend money getting them refurbed, I'd go for a different set altogether.

Get the detachable towbar fitted.
Get the car resprayed (stone chips and door dings)
Possible rear spoiler
Possible new 19" wheels
Sat Nav software upgrade
iPod Denision install
Monitors in headrests
Window tints in the rear if the monitors are installed.