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E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #26  
Old 01-02-2013, 10:47 PM
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bkgreene39 bkgreene39 is offline
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Originally Posted by Shin1ichi View Post
one day,.......aways off from now, i dream to build a cobra kit with a 427..........

Only cobra that matters is the "Terminator". Get that and leave everyone in the dust if power is what you seek.

Last edited by bkgreene39; 01-02-2013 at 10:57 PM.
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  #27  
Old 01-04-2013, 05:21 PM
bobdmac bobdmac is online now
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Mein Auto: 2001 540i/6, '90 BMW k75s
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Originally Posted by Shin1ichi View Post
thanks for all the chiming in.....

i need to drive more of them, that's for sure. stick shift 530's and even stick 540's, if i can find any around here..........
?...for 2003's, were both 530 and 540 5 speed sticks?

i know i would be 'hoping' not to need a new steptranny any time soon, but i've never dropped a tranny for a clutch either,...outside my current realm of skills...

When I bought my 540, I was originally looking for a 530. I had driven a couple of the 6's, but they had history issues, and I passed on them. I decided to try the 540 because it had the 6-speed, and I was instantly seduced. Your city fuel mileage will be a disaster, but highway mileage can be pretty decent, in the high 20's. I'm guessing the 6 is marginally less expensive to maintain, but I have no definitive data to support that thesis.

As for handling, the 540 is agile and responsive enough for me, but I don't go autocrossing it, nor have I driven it on the track. From time to time, given the right road and proper conditions, I enjoy some spirited cornering, and for me the throttle response more than compensates for any perceived handling deficiencies. It feels extremely stable and well planted on the pavement, even in quick switchbacks.

Apart from the immediacy of the manual's response, I favored it over the automatic because I didn't want the anxiety of wondering if the transmission would fail during a long trip. I've seen reports of automatic transmission failures between 80,000 and 225,000 miles, which makes it kind of a crap shoot in my book. I can't recall reading or hearing of any manual transmission failures.

Drive one yourself. The combinations of sensations and how you weight them makes it too hard to quantify objectively. I've had mine for two years, and no regrets so far.
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  #28  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:25 PM
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IndiansFan IndiansFan is offline
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Originally Posted by Shin1ichi View Post
Really thinking to go manual tranny, if i can find a decent one.
I've driven a few 525/530's (2002-2003) in the last couple of days, all @ 100K miles. All i could find so far are the steptronic, BUT, even in this combination, these cars drive so much more of what i want my car to drive like than my MB. MB has a sleeper motor, with good pull if you floor it, but tip in, initial response, is not as quick as the BMW and the steering and feedback of the MB cannot compare to the BMW..... and this is a prime fator in my looking, that and the styling is so much better.
Something like this if you want a manual.......
http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-s...gIndex=1&Log=0

Or this if your willing to "settle" for an automatic.........
http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-s...gIndex=3&Log=0

If you want three pedals, then do not settle for an automatic unless you want a 540 wagon. They did not import a 530 wagon to the states.

You will enjoy either the 530i or 540i manual, just buy the best one you find. Don't jump on the first one just because it's there. Next week a better one might become available.

Remember the tomato juice jingle............I could'a had a V8!
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2001 530iA STEEL BLUE/Sand - Sport/Premium/Cold Package
1999 528iA JET BLACK/Black - Sport/Premium/Heated Seats
1999 528iT CASHMERE BEIGE/Sand - Sport/Premium Package - 5 speed
1982 Fiat 2000 Spider - BLUE METALLIC/Blue
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  #29  
Old 01-04-2013, 06:56 PM
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fullthrottle540 fullthrottle540 is offline
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Location: san diego
 
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Mein Auto: E39
Quote:
Originally Posted by champaign777 View Post
ya
dont take 530i
piece of sh** ... not like 540i ...
haha but no, 530 isn't a piece of sh.... it's just mediocre overall, and who the heck is "OK" with a mediocre enthusiast car? 16 year olds and soccer moms...
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  #30  
Old 01-04-2013, 07:30 PM
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E36 Phantom E36 Phantom is online now
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Actually the 530 really isn't mediocre at all, coming from someone who's owned both. The M54B30 has great response and it's an enjoyable car to drive through corners.
If you want to carve corners, you get the 530. If you want to power slide through them, you get the 540.

OP, 540 manuals were ALL 6 speeds.

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  #31  
Old 01-04-2013, 08:19 PM
Shin1ichi Shin1ichi is offline
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Let me say that in the time i've perused this forum and the short time i've been registered and posted this thread..............
...............
,........
..

you guys rock!

businell travelling starts next week or so and I wil have limited time to look,.....but as some say, that let's me 'wait' for the right one, noh?

530/5 (or is it 6 speed stick)
540/6

these, i need to drive.

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  #32  
Old 01-04-2013, 08:43 PM
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manticore33 manticore33 is offline
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Mein Auto: '86 Porsche 951, '01 530i
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Originally Posted by fullthrottle540 View Post
haha but no, 530 isn't a piece of sh.... it's just mediocre overall, and who the heck is "OK" with a mediocre enthusiast car? 16 year olds and soccer moms...
Woah, woah, wait a minute. Engine, make, or model does not make an "enthusiast car," passion makes an "enthusiast car." Explain all the MG, Fiat, BMW 2002, Porsche 914, 356, 912, and etc people? A a good condition BMW 2002 is dirt slow compared to your "almighty" mid-level v8 and still worth more than most e39s.

Maybe expand into other "enthusiast cars" especially older ones that are "vintage" where people actually truly worked on/modified/updated the cars. Heck, most of the BMW owners with 20+ year old cars will put most e39ers to shame.

P.S. Some of us with "mediocre" e39s have "medicore" e39s for "medicore" driving since we have other cars that are "enthusiast cars."
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Last edited by manticore33; 01-04-2013 at 08:46 PM.
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  #33  
Old 01-05-2013, 01:39 AM
NZ BMW NZ BMW is offline
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Mein Auto: 2001 530i
Quote:
Originally Posted by fullthrottle540 View Post
haha but no, 530 isn't a piece of sh.... it's just mediocre overall, and who the heck is "OK" with a mediocre enthusiast car? 16 year olds and soccer moms...
If you were an enthusiast you would know that the M54 is regarded as one of the best BMW engines out there and it won several awards in the early 2000's.

IMO the I6 is the perfect balance for the E39 and makes an excellent car with a much lighter and more nimble front end. My car gives me exactly the right balance for city driving and longer commuting, I've always owned I6 cars and I see no reason to change I think they're the perfect blend for living in the real world.

I'd rather be driving a 530i than a poor man's M5, which is what the 540i is if you try and regale other E39's owners about how great and powerful your V8 BMW is. If you wanted something that drives well and has a huge amount of power you'd get an M-Car not a big fat muscle car.

Getting back to the original question in this thread, I owned a Mercedes before I had my E39. It wasn't a W210 but what I can tell you is that model is not that well regarded, the next model of E Class is probably a better comparison to the BMW.

Mercedes is always about comfort and BMW has always been more of a driver's car. In that sense Mercedes is probably similar to Lexus in that it's a very plush sensory depravation tank with wheels. I loved my S Class for long distance driving, but my E39 is almost as comfortable given that I'm relatively young and have no injures or pain which crops up on long drives. I do think the build quality of the Mercedes was slightly better than BMW too. I think a 530i will compare very well to your E430 in terms of equipment and there are more of them around, if you're worried about speed - here are some numbers:

530i - 0-100km 7.9 seconds with 221HP
E430 - 0-100km 6 seconds with 275HP

Unless you're into drag racing that's not much difference, I don't know about anyone else here but I don't use the stop watch in my car to time me away from each light and given traffic and everything else I arrive at my destination at roughly the same time regardless of if I "race" or drive like a grandma.

You will notice the extra power in the V8 at high speeds, it will just keep pulling and settle into cruise better. But you're limited on public roads anyway.
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  #34  
Old 01-05-2013, 01:54 AM
hqstu hqstu is offline
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I love my 530, it's the perfect car for the real world everyday drive.
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  #35  
Old 01-05-2013, 07:54 AM
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champaign777 champaign777 is offline
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530i any day
the pleasure of perfection
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  #36  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manticore33 View Post
Woah, woah, wait a minute. Engine, make, or model does not make an "enthusiast car," passion makes an "enthusiast car." Explain all the MG, Fiat, BMW 2002, Porsche 914, 356, 912, and etc people? A a good condition BMW 2002 is dirt slow compared to your "almighty" mid-level v8 and still worth more than most e39s.

Maybe expand into other "enthusiast cars" especially older ones that are "vintage" where people actually truly worked on/modified/updated the cars. Heck, most of the BMW owners with 20+ year old cars will put most e39ers to shame.

P.S. Some of us with "mediocre" e39s have "medicore" e39s for "medicore" driving since we have other cars that are "enthusiast cars."
Thank you sir! You are right on the money.
Passion for automobiles is what motivates me. My first experience with BMW was a ride in a '67 1602 38 years ago.

On a sunny summer Saturday afternoon, I'll take the Fiat out for a four hour backroads cruise with the top down while the German cars sit at home! If I had a Packard, I'd be driving that as well.

Go to a vintage event, you will see passionate people everywhere you look. If you have neven been to the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix, you should, at least once in your lifetime. You will remember the event forever!
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Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.
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2001 530iA STEEL BLUE/Sand - Sport/Premium/Cold Package
1999 528iA JET BLACK/Black - Sport/Premium/Heated Seats
1999 528iT CASHMERE BEIGE/Sand - Sport/Premium Package - 5 speed
1982 Fiat 2000 Spider - BLUE METALLIC/Blue
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  #37  
Old 01-05-2013, 12:24 PM
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Stone Roots Stone Roots is offline
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Originally Posted by ill540i View Post
540! No questions asked,more power and there actually more relaible

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