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what are the main differences between the 1997 auto & the 1998 540i 6 speed other than the obvious.
Are the headlights the same, will they work with either car?
Is the front bumper the same?
 

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There are no major difference between 97 and 98. The /6 will have the 'sports package": staggered wheels, stiffer suspension and shadowline trim (i.e. flat black around the side windows rather than chrome). My '98 has side airbags whereas I don't believe the '97 has them.

Other than that it will depend on the options that came with the original car: xenon headlights, audiophile stereo, CD changer, phone, etc were all options. I believe all body panels (incl bumpers) are identical.

Don't forget to find the delivery date for the '97. It may be a year older than you think because there was no '96 model year.

... and of course the obvious difference: auto and standard are night and day difference on these cars.
 

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Keep in mind, if the 98 does have shadowline, the bumper and side mouldings will not have chrome in them as do all '97 sports- even the 6 speeds. Same for the trim around the windows.

At one time or another before 2000, they changed the side view mirrors from '97 or '98- they got smaller. The gas cap changed as well. I am also pretty sure that rain sensing wipers showed up in '98's- not an option on '97's. (Unless you're just silly like Tyrone.)
 

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For the "Premium Fuel Only" sticker that resides in the fuel filler opening, I believe BMW sourced the adhesive from a different manufacturer for MY99.




















































:p :D :)

-Mark
 
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