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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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  #1  
Old 01-25-2013, 03:54 PM
andrew320i andrew320i is offline
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How responsive would a 2003 530i sports auto be?

I just drove my friend's Holden Cruze (a recent Australian car, auto and probably 1.8L 4-cyl), and the auto experience is... far from sporty. Primarily, it seems to take well over a second of flooring it before it changes into the right gear and goes for it. The sports mode is lame too. This makes me fear that a 2003 530i sports auto would be likewise unresponsive. Of course once you're accelerating well, it'll be a gun, but I'm not keen for significant delay to get to that stage.

So how is it? In plain auto mode, how long is the delay? In sports mode, do you feel that you basically have the same control and responsiveness as a manual?
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  #2  
Old 01-25-2013, 05:01 PM
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Albo Albo is online now
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530i sucks... stay away from it!
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  #3  
Old 01-25-2013, 05:15 PM
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champaign777 champaign777 is offline
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agree
530i are suck peace of junk
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Last edited by champaign777; 01-25-2013 at 09:47 PM.
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  #4  
Old 01-25-2013, 07:12 PM
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Fudman Fudman is offline
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You have got to be kidding. You think there is any similarity betwee a 1.8l 4 cyl and an I6? The difference is day and night!
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  #5  
Old 01-25-2013, 07:39 PM
edjack edjack is online now
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Duh! Why not drive one and decide?
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  #6  
Old 01-26-2013, 02:37 AM
andrew320i andrew320i is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Albo View Post
530i sucks... stay away from it!
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Originally Posted by champaign777 View Post
agree
530i are suck peace of junk
Is this sarcasm? Or is anything less than a 540 a terrible car? You aren't being helpful.

EDIT: The disadvantage of using the bimmer app is not seeing sigs.. haha I see now, good to hear.

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Originally Posted by Fudman View Post
You have got to be kidding. You think there is any similarity betwee a 1.8l 4 cyl and an I6? The difference is day and night!
This isn't a question of power, more of transition and electronics mechanics. I'm not going to assume that because it's got a big engine and it's BMW that the auto is going to be nicely responsive.

With the 4 cyl, it would take about two seconds of flooring it before it would change from 6th to 2nd/3rd. A 3L I6 is still going to be relatively lame in 5th gear at 60 km/h, unless the low end torque really is that good. Again, this is about the transmission functionality not power.

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Originally Posted by edjack View Post
Duh! Why not drive one and decide?
Think I may find it hard to test drive one, though it's probably about time. I don't think anyone would really believe that I would be looking to buy one as I'm only 21 and don't have the cash at this stage. Maybe I can just offer some guy a bit of money for me to have a 15 minute drive. Or just ask I suppose.

Given I'm focused on a 530i sport, is driving a lower end E39 going to be that different re. this issue? If they aren't that different, it'd make testing this heaps easier.

Last edited by andrew320i; 01-26-2013 at 03:27 PM.
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  #7  
Old 01-26-2013, 03:31 AM
Reuvers Reuvers is offline
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I don't think your age has much to do with it.
But why are we going into depth in this if you don't have the cash to buy one, let alone do the necessary repairs each and every e39 needs at given intervals (not cheap to run these, as pretty much all here will agree with)

Are you just short of the cash, or are you yet to start saving for this?

To add: I had never heard of the brand Holden Cruze so i looked them up. Apparantly the 1.8 is the standard engine which is sluggish and slow. They have a 'sports' version with a whopping 1.4 liter turbo engine that produces approximately 140hp and 200nm torque. Comparing this to the 231hp 530i with 300nm torque it really does prove that these 2 cannot be compared...Note the BMW only weighs 133 kg more
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  #8  
Old 01-26-2013, 05:21 AM
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Hi,

Lets look at this realistically - the BMW autoboxes are much better than the basic type auto gearbox in the Holden. These are performance orientated executive cars and have more complex and better performing and feeling auto gearboxes. They aren't as responsive as say a full on Sports or fast executive car like say a similar period AMG or Audi auto, but not all that far off.

In short, they're an excellent gearbox for what they are, kickdown responsiveness is fine and the steptronic gives you that added dimension of tipping the gears up/down. If you look through all the BMW forums, there's hardly any posts complaining about the gearbox responsiveness.

Keep in mind the maintenence on these cars can be high and when things do go wrong you will need X% more funds to put it right again.

Cheers, Dennis!
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  #9  
Old 01-26-2013, 06:20 AM
rdemellovidal rdemellovidal is offline
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Who really needs a car that jumps gears in seconds unless you are in a race? Cant compare a piece o s. 1.8 with a bmw 530 in the long run. Lets be serious...
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  #10  
Old 01-26-2013, 06:24 AM
rdemellovidal rdemellovidal is offline
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And the real difference comes with age. A 10 year old bmw will be far away on quality and endurance than a regular american or japanese auto. The last ones will look good on the beginning but will age badly after a couple of years. All plastic!
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  #11  
Old 01-26-2013, 12:52 PM
andrew320i andrew320i is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reuvers View Post
I don't think your age has much to do with it.
But why are we going into depth in this if you don't have the cash to buy one, let alone do the necessary repairs each and every e39 needs at given intervals (not cheap to run these, as pretty much all here will agree with)

Are you just short of the cash, or are you yet to start saving for this?
I like to think about these things, and it would be a savings goal. By the end of this year, my disposable income is going to substantially increase (i.e. double or so, moving from part time to full time), so buying a car like this would become realistic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DennisCooper! View Post
Lets look at this realistically - the BMW autoboxes are much better than the basic type auto gearbox in the Holden. These are performance orientated executive cars and have more complex and better performing and feeling auto gearboxes. They aren't as responsive as say a full on Sports or fast executive car like say a similar period AMG or Audi auto, but not all that far off.

In short, they're an excellent gearbox for what they are, kickdown responsiveness is fine and the steptronic gives you that added dimension of tipping the gears up/down. If you look through all the BMW forums, there's hardly any posts complaining about the gearbox responsiveness.

Keep in mind the maintenence on these cars can be high and when things do go wrong you will need X% more funds to put it right again.

Cheers, Dennis!
Thank you! That's all I was asking for! That's really good to hear, sounds like it's good enough. Interesting to hear that Audi and AMG one upped them with the autoboxes.

Yeah this would definitely be a car that I need to have some good spare cash in bank to keep it good. I'd want to be getting everything fixed the moment a problem arises, or even before it arises. With my '94 320i, unfortunately I haven't had the cash to do this, so it's aged noticeably over the past year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdemellovidal View Post
Who really needs a car that jumps gears in seconds unless you are in a race? Cant compare a piece o s. 1.8 with a bmw 530 in the long run. Lets be serious...
This other car that I drove took 2 seconds to change gears after flooring it. In my mind, that's unsafe! I would hate to be in a situation where I would be better off with more power, and have an autobox like that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdemellovidal View Post
And the real difference comes with age. A 10 year old bmw will be far away on quality and endurance than a regular american or japanese auto. The last ones will look good on the beginning but will age badly after a couple of years. All plastic!
It's completely true - my '94 320i is (well was) in nicer condition than most early 2000 cars. I'm glad BMW doesn't do cheap plastic.
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  #12  
Old 01-26-2013, 01:06 PM
NZ BMW NZ BMW is offline
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For those outside Australasia the car he is referring to is the same as a Chevy Cruze, I think.

The 530i should be more responsive, mine probably has a half second delay for kickdown. The thing you also have to consider is the extra torque in the I6 means that the car moves faster, unlike a smaller engine in an only slightly smaller sedan which has to work harder.
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  #13  
Old 01-26-2013, 01:08 PM
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MikesE39 MikesE39 is offline
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Its not a sports car... But its not a 1.8 I4... Its a 3.0 I6. unless your looking to race people then its more than enough power. Its not a 540 or an m5 but its still faster than most of the cars on the road.
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  #14  
Old 01-26-2013, 01:25 PM
andrew320i andrew320i is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NZ BMW View Post
For those outside Australasia the car he is referring to is the same as a Chevy Cruze, I think.

The 530i should be more responsive, mine probably has a half second delay for kickdown. The thing you also have to consider is the extra torque in the I6 means that the car moves faster, unlike a smaller engine in an only slightly smaller sedan which has to work harder.
Half a second, that's far better! I could definitely cope with that. Thanks for giving some numbers. I guess with the much higher power to weight ratio, even before it changes it will be better.

Yep it looks the same as a chevy Cruze. They're surprisingly heavy cars. When I first saw it, I thought I'd be driving something with a fairly hefty engine, but it was not so.
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  #15  
Old 01-26-2013, 01:53 PM
rdemellovidal rdemellovidal is offline
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Also, wrong to think a 530 is expensive. The BMW network of parts and acessories is so huge worldwide that it follows a simple economic equation: the greater supply means cheaper parts. Also you have thousands of service experts worldwide and labor. Finding parts for a Chevy is prpbably more difficult than for a BMW. Just browse on ebay and youll see.
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  #16  
Old 01-26-2013, 01:55 PM
rdemellovidal rdemellovidal is offline
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Just keep the BM in good shape and serviced and it wont hove you headaches. Im on my 9th BM, gone to other cars, but always come back...
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  #17  
Old 01-26-2013, 01:55 PM
rdemellovidal rdemellovidal is offline
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Its a culture.
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