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F10 / F11 (2011 - Current)
The new chapter in the highly successful story of the BMW 5 Series Sedan (F10) and wagon (F11)

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  #1  
Old 10-02-2012, 09:20 AM
CA540 CA540 is offline
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Does F10 550 beat E39 540i?

Thanks to welcome help from the forum, I'm focused on a 2013 550i, black with beige, and M sport and executive package. Do those who traded from great E 39 models enjoy the new car experience? Is it a happy trade up--or a compromise trade down?

I have some last pangs of parting with the 2002 540i, though I would like the new 2013 technology. Comments welcome. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 10-02-2012, 10:09 AM
solstice solstice is offline
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I had an E39 530i and an F10 535i. The E39 was exceptional the F10 was a big disappointment. Is the E39 a better car? In essence yes, it's lighter and much more communicative and direct in it's responses. However it's now an old car and there is no denying that the F10s cabin is far superior in looks and content. So it depends what you are looking far. In power, technology and luxury the F10 beats the pants of the E39.
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  #3  
Old 10-02-2012, 10:11 AM
jygesq jygesq is offline
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drive new 550 and compare

Quote:
Originally Posted by CA540 View Post
Thanks to welcome help from the forum, I'm focused on a 2013 550i, black with beige, and M sport and executive package. Do those who traded from great E 39 models enjoy the new car experience? Is it a happy trade up--or a compromise trade down?

I have some last pangs of parting with the 2002 540i, though I would like the new 2013 technology. Comments welcome. Thanks.
I think 540 is better car
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  #4  
Old 10-02-2012, 12:02 PM
darkrail darkrail is offline
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Mein Auto: 2012 550i M Sport
In February I traded my 2002 E39 540i for a 2012 550i M-Sport. No regrets whatsoever.

The only downside I notice is maneuvering in tight spaces and parking. That's when the car feels big to me. The top-view cameras help somewhat. Around LA, I tend to avoid all the tiny parking lots and park on quiet streets a block or two from my destination. This also avoids door dings and makes me exercise more, possibly adding a few months to my life expectancy. See, it's all good.

Once the car gets going, it's so quick, solid and nimble that I don't notice its size at all. It feels far more powerful than my 540i. I am not one of the people who is disappointed in how communicative or responsive the steering is. I just love driving it.

One big plus I didn't realize on my test drives was how much more quiet the interior is. When it's time to creep along at 3 mph on the 405, the car isolates you into a peaceful bubble away from the stress where you can appreciate the subtleties of some quiet classical music. When you finally pass the ladder that's blocking a couple lanes of traffic and gun it, the engine emits a satisfying snarl and you're back in a race car again.

All the technology is wonderful. The Executive Package includes HUD, right? You'll definitely want the HUD. I turn off the navigation's voice prompts and just watch the magic arrow that's superimposed over the road. Makes nav far less annoying.

I loved my 540i for the seven years I drove it and was very reluctant to trade it in, but I'm so very glad I did. I believe my 550i is my favorite thing I've ever bought.
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  #5  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:24 PM
CA540 CA540 is offline
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thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by darkrail View Post
In February I traded my 2002 E39 540i for a 2012 550i M-Sport. No regrets whatsoever.

The only downside I notice is maneuvering in tight spaces and parking. That's when the car feels big to me. The top-view cameras help somewhat. Around LA, I tend to avoid all the tiny parking lots and park on quiet streets a block or two from my destination. This also avoids door dings and makes me exercise more, possibly adding a few months to my life expectancy. See, it's all good.

Once the car gets going, it's so quick, solid and nimble that I don't notice its size at all. It feels far more powerful than my 540i. I am not one of the people who is disappointed in how communicative or responsive the steering is. I just love driving it.

One big plus I didn't realize on my test drives was how much more quiet the interior is. When it's time to creep along at 3 mph on the 405, the car isolates you into a peaceful bubble away from the stress where you can appreciate the subtleties of some quiet classical music. When you finally pass the ladder that's blocking a couple lanes of traffic and gun it, the engine emits a satisfying snarl and you're back in a race car again.

All the technology is wonderful. The Executive Package includes HUD, right? You'll definitely want the HUD. I turn off the navigation's voice prompts and just watch the magic arrow that's superimposed over the road. Makes nav far less annoying.

I loved my 540i for the seven years I drove it and was very reluctant to trade it in, but I'm so very glad I did. I believe my 550i is my favorite thing I've ever bought.
Do you have the dreaded throttle tip in issue--lagging acceleration from standing start, then jumps forward too fast?
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  #6  
Old 10-02-2012, 03:47 PM
darkrail darkrail is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CA540 View Post
Do you have the dreaded throttle tip in issue--lagging acceleration from standing start, then jumps forward too fast?
Nope. I'm no expert, but I think that was only a 2011 problem...? Mine's very immediate.

Make sure the test drive you take is in a fairly recent 550i and I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

What FastMarkA says about the E39 being about the same size as a modern F30 is true. Definitely worth your time to check out both cars. I prefer the larger one for a bunch of my own reasons (like being 6'5"), but the F30s are great if you want a smaller one.
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  #7  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:31 PM
CA540 CA540 is offline
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Thanks. Good report, much welcome. Have you run into that throttle tip in issue? Slow start from stop, then jump fast, too fast.
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  #8  
Old 10-02-2012, 12:19 PM
flobey540 flobey540 is offline
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CA540 - I came from a 2001 540 6-speed in February. The F10 550i is a much nicer vehicle, and obviously much quicker as well. All the latest tech, more comfort, etc., but I do sometimes miss my 540i. Maybe it was the no car payments ... Seriously - steering was great, felt a bit smaller, etc. - but the F10 is a lot more car.
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  #9  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:24 PM
CA540 CA540 is offline
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Thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by flobey540 View Post
CA540 - I came from a 2001 540 6-speed in February. The F10 550i is a much nicer vehicle, and obviously much quicker as well. All the latest tech, more comfort, etc., but I do sometimes miss my 540i. Maybe it was the no car payments ... Seriously - steering was great, felt a bit smaller, etc. - but the F10 is a lot more car.
Do you have the dreaded throttle tip in issue--lagging acceleration from standing start, then jumps forward too fast?
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  #10  
Old 10-02-2012, 02:35 PM
FastMarkA FastMarkA is offline
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Despite being called the same name, I'd argue the F10 and E39 are in totally different classes.

The E39 is about the size of today's 3'er (F30), and the F10 is about the size of the E38 7-Series. You can do all you want to a car in terms of design and suspension, but physics always wins.
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  #11  
Old 10-02-2012, 06:45 PM
BosBmw540 BosBmw540 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CA540 View Post
Thanks to welcome help from the forum, I'm focused on a 2013 550i, black with beige, and M sport and executive package. Do those who traded from great E 39 models enjoy the new car experience? Is it a happy trade up--or a compromise trade down?

I have some last pangs of parting with the 2002 540i, though I would like the new 2013 technology. Comments welcome. Thanks.
540i response much fast, more feel to the road,more power at any speed and it is very comfortable. But it is old car and need to fix here and there from time to time.
550i is very comfortable and has nice interior and layout, newer technology does make difference to the comfortable levels. But it slower, lag, and feel heavier (vs. the old 540i, which is truly effortless at any speed). I got spoiled by 540i experience and don't personally like the 550i much.
Don't laugh at me for it..., I am now ended up with a Mazda 3, which has 90% of fun from 540i with 1/3 of the cost, and most important to me now, it is trouble free as I don't have time to DIY anymore. The Snow tires match up each other and this is also a plus.
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  #12  
Old 10-02-2012, 07:45 PM
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dunderhi dunderhi is online now
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The E39 will feel faster, but it really isn't. Here are some performance stats for comparison:

C&D Test Results
2001 540i (Steptronic)
0-60 5.7sec
0-100 15.3 sec
1/4mi 14.3@97mph
5-60 6.0 sec
70-0 167ft
Gees .84
EPA 14/19 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $1,300

C&D Test Results
2011 550i (Auto)
0-60 4.8sec
0-100 11.0 sec
1/4mi 13.1@109mph
5-60 5.3 sec
70-0 170ft
Gees .86
EPA 17/25 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $0

Adding Dinan to the F10 changes it into a beast.
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  #13  
Old 10-02-2012, 08:09 PM
FastMarkA FastMarkA is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunderhi View Post
The E39 will feel faster, but it really isn't. Here are some performance stats for comparison:

C&D Test Results
2001 540i (Steptronic)
0-60 5.7sec
0-100 15.3 sec
1/4mi 14.3@97mph
5-60 6.0 sec
70-0 167ft
Gees .84
EPA 14/19 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $1,300
And in some cases, even the F10 535 is faster, per C&D:

C&D Test Results
2011 535i (Auto)
0-60 5.7 sec
0-100 14.1 sec
1/4mi 14.1@100mph
5-60 6.5 sec
70-0 168ft
EPA 19/29

No doubt, the 550 is a beast and really does not compare to the E39 540 one bit.
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  #14  
Old 10-02-2012, 08:22 PM
CA540 CA540 is offline
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Great data!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dunderhi View Post
The E39 will feel faster, but it really isn't. Here are some performance stats for comparison:

C&D Test Results
2001 540i (Steptronic)
0-60 5.7sec
0-100 15.3 sec
1/4mi 14.3@97mph
5-60 6.0 sec
70-0 167ft
Gees .84
EPA 14/19 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $1,300

C&D Test Results
2011 550i (Auto)
0-60 4.8sec
0-100 11.0 sec
1/4mi 13.1@109mph
5-60 5.3 sec
70-0 170ft
Gees .86
EPA 17/25 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $0

Adding Dinan to the F10 changes it into a beast.
Thanks!
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  #15  
Old 10-03-2012, 05:45 AM
BosBmw540 BosBmw540 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunderhi View Post
The E39 will feel faster, but it really isn't. Here are some performance stats for comparison:

C&D Test Results
2001 540i (Steptronic)
0-60 5.7sec
0-100 15.3 sec
1/4mi 14.3@97mph
5-60 6.0 sec
70-0 167ft
Gees .84
EPA 14/19 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $1,300

C&D Test Results
2011 550i (Auto)
0-60 4.8sec
0-100 11.0 sec
1/4mi 13.1@109mph
5-60 5.3 sec
70-0 170ft
Gees .86
EPA 17/25 (today's tests)
Gas Guzzler Tax $0

Adding Dinan to the F10 changes it into a beast.
Will be better comparison using the Spec from 540i 6-Speed M-sport against 550i M-Sport, both manual, or just using top OEM setups for both, include the torgue and weight of both cars.
There is a reason why 550i is 'felt' heavier and lag at low-speed acceleration while 540i is effortless.
Steptronic sucks, so is Auto. For car like this level, go for manual else one will lost 50% of fun from the car's capability.
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  #16  
Old 10-03-2012, 06:27 AM
Emilner Emilner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BosBmw540 View Post
Will be better comparison using the Spec from 540i 6-Speed M-sport against 550i M-Sport, both manual, or just using top OEM setups for both, include the torgue and weight of both cars.
There is a reason why 550i is 'felt' heavier and lag at low-speed acceleration while 540i is effortless.
Steptronic sucks, so is Auto. For car like this level, go for manual else one will lost 50% of fun from the car's capability.
Sorry, but an E39 540 will have his head handed to it in an embarrassing way against an f10 550i. A closer comparison is the 535, which the E39 will struggle against. The E39 was a great car but even though it feels fast that doesn't mean it actually is when comparing to modern cars...
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  #17  
Old 10-04-2012, 08:38 AM
BosBmw540 BosBmw540 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emilner View Post
Sorry, but an E39 540 will have his head handed to it in an embarrassing way against an f10 550i. A closer comparison is the 535, which the E39 will struggle against. The E39 was a great car but even though it feels fast that doesn't mean it actually is when comparing to modern cars...
Depends on what's your preference, luxury or driving experience.
Yes that 550i wins the luxury and Spec in hp but 550i has to bow to 540i in driving experience obviously. Maybe the new 335 is a good balance in between both factors now.
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  #18  
Old 10-04-2012, 12:45 PM
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Keyser Soze Keyser Soze is offline
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A lot of the speed "disassociation" comparing new to old vehicles is simply that these new cars are so much more insulated, disconnected and quiet compared to the previous generations. I have noticed taking some offramps at a greater speed in the 535 than I do in my 330 and not even noticing it until the 85 mph warning I set starts chiming. It all goes back to the "more fun to drive a slow car fast" axiom where you feel the speed more in the older car.
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  #19  
Old 10-04-2012, 03:45 PM
Sophisto Sophisto is offline
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I owned a E39 528A Touring for 5 years.
I still am sorry for ever trading that car for an E61.
But.
I am more mature now and the F11 is that compared to the old car.
So I choose driving the 530D over any E39 now, in 2012.
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  #20  
Old 10-05-2012, 07:20 AM
astrohip astrohip is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sophisto View Post
I owned a E39 528A Touring for 5 years.
I still am sorry for ever trading that car for an E61.
I am of the opposite opinion. I drove a 540i Sport with multiple Dinan upgrades. Incredible car, loved it. Then I bought a 550i Sport (E60) and I love it even more. Took a couple days to get used to the different "feel" of the car, but there has been no looking back. Absolutely fantastic car.

Next up, I'm going to buy either an F10 550 or an F13 650. Hence my hanging around these forum.
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  #21  
Old 10-05-2012, 07:36 AM
solstice solstice is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astrohip View Post
I am of the opposite opinion. I drove a 540i Sport with multiple Dinan upgrades. Incredible car, loved it. Then I bought a 550i Sport (E60) and I love it even more. Took a couple days to get used to the different "feel" of the car, but there has been no looking back. Absolutely fantastic car.

Next up, I'm going to buy either an F10 550 or an F13 650. Hence my hanging around these forum.
I also think the E60 is a notch above the E39. The F10 however is a totally different car and not in a good way for my personal preferences.
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  #22  
Old 10-05-2012, 11:34 AM
BosBmw540 BosBmw540 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solstice View Post
I also think the E60 is a notch above the E39. The F10 however is a totally different car and not in a good way for my personal preferences.
Totally agree
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  #23  
Old 10-05-2012, 12:49 PM
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I prefer the F10 to the E60. Just a better car overall.
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  #24  
Old 10-04-2012, 06:18 PM
smashhell smashhell is offline
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This is a silly discussion.
Comparing 2 cars of different generation with 10 of years difference that is.
Of course the new car is going to be bigger and heavier, EVERY SINGLE CAR on market is the same.
They have to be increased due to safety regulation and what not.
The way the 5 series is being able to perform the same or even better with the extra weights just proofs the advancement of technology.
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  #25  
Old 10-04-2012, 06:33 PM
solstice solstice is offline
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"Of course the new car is going to be bigger and heavier, EVERY SINGLE CAR on market is the same.
They have to be increased due to safety regulation and what not."

Still, more small cars than ever are being produced and really large vehicles are being discontinued. Material technology have made huge strides to make lighter and stronger constructions.
Engines are dropping in displacement and there is no reason why cars should get bigger and heavier and I think we might be at the crest now. Porsche already dropped 400 lbs of the Cayenne, VW made similar reductions on the Touareg. The new Audi Q7 is rumoured to drop even more and the Range Rover still more. I think the next 5 series will be lighter than the F10 which I think will be keep it's position as the heaviest 5 series forever.
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