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E39 M5 (1998-2003)

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  #1  
Old 03-02-2012, 01:34 PM
danzerdelight danzerdelight is offline
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Questions Before Purchasing

Hey guys,

New to the forum and kind of new to BMW, even though I am a car fanatic. Anyways, I am planning on purchasing a 2001 E39 M5 with over 114k miles on it. Car is in great condition outside and inside. I reviewed the 100k maintenance schedule invoice from the current owner and saw this as a note on the invoice:

SRS LIGHT ON. FAULT CODES 001, DRIVERS AIRBAG RESISTANCE TO HIGH, FAULT NOT PRESENT. FAULT CODE 240, CONTROL UNIT FAULT INTERNAL, NOT PRESENT. CLEARED FAULT CODES FOR SRS, IF CODES RETURN, FURTHER DIAGNOSIS WILL BE NEEDED. TURN ON DRL AND AUTO DOOR LOCK.
***NOTES***
FRONT PADS 5% TO SENSOR. REAR PADS 75% TO SENSOR. TRANSMISSION HAS SMALL LEAK FROM CASE HALVES. DIFFERENTIAL HAS SMALL LEAK. R/R WHEEL IS BENT ON INSIDE


The last paragraph is what really scares me from purchasing this beast of a car. Other than that, he's had the oil, oil filter, air filter, micro filter, washer fluid, gear oil, sway bar bracket, bushings, rear stabilizer bar support brackets, and one oil filter housing mount replaced from this maintenance schedule. He's also had the clutch replaced at 90k. He has all maintenance records of his car as well.

Any support/ response will be greatly appreciated as this will be my first BMW.

Thanks,
David
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  #2  
Old 03-03-2012, 11:02 AM
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timfitz63 timfitz63 is offline
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Sounds like a well-maintained M5!

I can't really address most of the specific points that you highlight from the invoice, but as with all used BMW's, a pre-purchase inspection is generally a good idea. If those areas of concern still appear problematic, I expect it would be noted during the course of that inspection.

Bent rims, if not seriously bent, can sometimes be balanced to run properly; if you note any odd behavior (shimmies, etc.) during a test drive at highway speeds, that would be the first area to check. Again, an inspection of that rim would prove helpful in deciding whether the rim is serviceable or needs to be replaced.
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  #3  
Old 03-04-2012, 08:56 PM
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Edgy36-39 Edgy36-39 is offline
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You're jumping into the deep end with an M5 as your first BMW. A PPI is a must, despite all the promising maintenance records. Bring it to an indy who knows these cars.

Clutch is a common issue, so good if that was replaced. Good luck!
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  #4  
Old 03-05-2012, 07:38 PM
danzerdelight danzerdelight is offline
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Yea, I think I'll wait for a better option...still want an E39 M5 though.. one day!
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  #5  
Old 03-23-2012, 05:49 PM
ard ard is online now
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Wait, THAT ppi caused you to not buy????

You'll NEVER buy one. There was nothing there that would cause me to say no.

Did they do tranny and diff fluid changes? Coolant? brake fluid flushes? No mention in your post, so wondering.
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  #6  
Old 03-24-2012, 07:25 PM
danzerdelight danzerdelight is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
Wait, THAT ppi caused you to not buy????

You'll NEVER buy one. There was nothing there that would cause me to say no.

Did they do tranny and diff fluid changes? Coolant? brake fluid flushes? No mention in your post, so wondering.
That was noted on his 100k maintenance record from the dealer. A PPI was not done.
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  #7  
Old 03-24-2012, 10:58 PM
ard ard is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danzerdelight View Post
That was noted on his 100k maintenance record from the dealer. A PPI was not done.
So on the basis of those notes on the 100k maintenance record you decided to walk?


Seems even less of a reason than if that had been an actual PPI.


Or did I misread and you walked for other reasons?
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  #8  
Old 03-29-2012, 11:16 AM
Turbo_525 Turbo_525 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danzerdelight View Post
That was noted on his 100k maintenance record from the dealer. A PPI was not done.


Go get a real PPI done - only way to tell what's happened since 100k...

Or get a PPI done on a 540i/6speed. It'll be well more than enough of an improvement over your Accord...maybe a bit less $$$$ to maintain long term, meaning only $3k a year instead of $5k...
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  #9  
Old 03-30-2012, 07:10 PM
danzerdelight danzerdelight is offline
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Rethought about getting an M5 with that many miles... I bet it's a blast and hopefully one day I will be able to afford it with it's maintenance costs. As for now, I'll probably stick to my Accord, not a bad car, good gas mileage, low insurance rates, paid off. Can't complain!

Thanks for all the input though!

P.S. Thinking about an E90 M3 instead in the future, we'll see how it goes.
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