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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey all! So my current daily driver, nick-named "The Dad Wagon" (2003 Volvo V70 wagon 5MT) was getting a bit shabby and needed about $500 of parts immediately plus maybe 6 hours of my time to be safe to drive, then about $600 more and another 8 hours of my time in the next year to two when the rest of the suspension was really worn out. It was simply too much money and time spent considering it wasn't worth much anymore. So I had to upgrade :)

I found this guy on a lot that rebuilds salvage BMWs. It had a minor front-end collision; only needed a headlight and hood. The cleanliness and overall fantastic condition of this overshadow the 'branded' title, at least in my eyes. I'm sure there will be purists who will disagree but, "yeah, well, you know that's just like uh, your opinion man."

It's a 2002 BMW 530i, manual, sport package. 74k miles. Needs a handful of small issues fixed as any 14 year old car would, but otherwise VERY clean and a solid driver. I NOW understand why so many people rave about BMWs, and the E39 chassis in general. Smooth as butter, handles with precision and confidence, ample power, quiet, and comfortable. It's a hell of car! I suppose I'm lucky to find one with a manual transmission, and to find one with only 74k miles makes it even more remarkable. I took it to my local BMW indy shop and they gave it a thorough once-over. My work is cut out for me but it's nothing that I can't handle myself nor should it scare me away from working my way through the list and spending some money on it.

So far I've done:
replaced headlight adjusters
Oil and oil filter change
Manual trans fluid change
rear differential fluid change
engine air and cabin air filters

and the list will grow and grow....
- driver door seals (worn out)
- power steering reservoir and hoses (slight leak)
- cooling system (of course)
- front thrust arms and polyurethane bushings
- valve cover gasket (sligtht leak at rear)
- pads (akebono ceramic) and rotors all four corners
- Windshield molding
- rubber trim around headlights

























 

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What happened to the formatting?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
What happened to the formatting?
I don't know. The other BMW forum I'm on re-sized these automatically and I used the forum-specific link from IMGUR, so I'm quite surprised these are as large as they are.

edit: Okay so I re-hosted them with a more appropriate size. Y'all are welcome :p
 

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Beautiful car!!! I think you found a great one. Obviously extremely well taken care of, looks almost new!

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Beautiful car!!! I think you found a great one. Obviously extremely well taken care of, looks almost new!

Jim
Thanks! I don't know the back-story beyond it being salvaged from New Jersey. I can say that yes, the previous owner took very good care of the interior and at the very least, kept the outside washed. I can say that he (or she?) did re-dye the interior, which is showing some thin spots and should need a re-dye in the next few years. Also, the ever-fragile cup-holder is intact, though I don't know if it is original or not. No cuts/tears on the steering wheel or shifter either.
I leatherique rejuvinator oil'd and pristine cleaned the leather, and wash-claybar-waxed the exterior prior to the photo-shoot, hence the deeeeeeeep gloss paint :)
 

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Thanks! I don't know the back-story beyond it being salvaged from New Jersey. I can say that yes, the previous owner took very good care of the interior and at the very least, kept the outside washed. I can say that he (or she?) did re-dye the interior, which is showing some thin spots and should need a re-dye in the next few years. Also, the ever-fragile cup-holder is intact, though I don't know if it is original or not. No cuts/tears on the steering wheel or shifter either.
I leatherique rejuvinator oil'd and pristine cleaned the leather, and wash-claybar-waxed the exterior prior to the photo-shoot, hence the deeeeeeeep gloss paint :)
You're going to be in for a great time. You seem to know exactly what you have and what you're doing. Those who have a shop to their work need to have a lot of green to keep the car up to what it is. Others who can dto will have some work to do but get to know the car so much better.

There are a lot of really nice, and really knowledgeable people here. Welcome, looking forward to hearing your exploits into the world of Deuch!

Oh, lots of people get the aftermarket cup holder. It's a vast improvement over the stock unit and is totally simple to install. One side holds my cell phone perfectly, the other is great for cups and spare change. :)

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You're going to be in for a great time. You seem to know exactly what you have and what you're doing. Those who have a shop to their work need to have a lot of green to keep the car up to what it is. Others who can dto will have some work to do but get to know the car so much better.

There are a lot of really nice, and really knowledgeable people here. Welcome, looking forward to hearing your exploits into the world of Deuch!

Oh, lots of people get the aftermarket cup holder. It's a vast improvement over the stock unit and is totally simple to install. One side holds my cell phone perfectly, the other is great for cups and spare change. :)

Jim
Yes, I have a degree as an auto technician, though never really used it, so I know enough to fiddle my way through things and most importantly, to know when I'm in over my head and stop. I also work for a major aftermarket auto parts supplier, so I have many, many resources at my disposal, as well as a good relationship with a local BMW shop that is walking distance from my office.

Oh and the cupholder looks just like OEM, just two small holes that don't do a good job of holding any vessel of fluid, no matter the diameter. I'm about to go buy the cheap plastic 'over the door sill' cup-holders and slid them into the transmission tunnel hump panel gap like I saw somewhere online.
 

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Yes, I have a degree as an auto technician, though never really used it, so I know enough to fiddle my way through things and most importantly, to know when I'm in over my head and stop. I also work for a major aftermarket auto parts supplier, so I have many, many resources at my disposal, as well as a good relationship with a local BMW shop that is walking distance from my office.

Oh and the cupholder looks just like OEM, just two small holes that don't do a good job of holding any vessel of fluid, no matter the diameter. I'm about to go buy the cheap plastic 'over the door sill' cup-holders and slid them into the transmission tunnel hump panel gap like I saw somewhere online.
Yep, that's the one. So simple, and just a world better at holding things.

This car is a pleasure to work on. If you have tools you can totally diy nearly anything on the car.

Jim
 

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Its amazing to me there are cars still hiding out there in that good condition. I bought my 2001 530ai anthracite grey two years ago . I didn't even need a car or know anything about the legendary e39. I fell in love with a car and I have owned at least 30 not all nice but just about everymake imaginable. A year later I searched for months and found a pristine 2002 540m with less than 50000 And jumped on it immediately. I have dropped thousands on these two cars without even batting an eye. The decisions we easy. The pride I feel in the maintenance pays off every time I drive them. I really can honestly say I will never sell these two cars. Enjoy it, take care of it there will never be another one like it
 

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There is a problem with these cars, they are like potato chips, one is never enough!!!! Sure like to add an m5 to my garage.

Of course I did see this nice blue 1997 Porsche 911S Turbo, a real steal at $750,000 :)

Jim
 

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You know what I have floated the m5 idea for months now. My 540 is plenty fast ennough for me . so for and extra 15000( because I would find one with low mileage) I could shave a second off my quarter mile,which I will never do, and have dual exhaust. I'll just keep mine
 

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Beautiful car! Welcome to the e39 family!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Fantastic looking car. Cute kid, too. When it comes time to sell, PM ME!!

Many happy miles. Good luck.
Thanks and thanks! Oh and I don't plan on selling this thing... ever, it's just too complete of a car. In 11 years it'll only have another 70kish miles so I'll still be south of 150k miles and it'll be a bona-fide classic :thumbup: What's the point of selling when insurance is dirt cheap?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Looks great! Enjoy the ride!
Thanks!

Need more pics man..Lol..looks good..
Don't tempt me!

Its amazing to me there are cars still hiding out there in that good condition. I bought my 2001 530ai anthracite grey two years ago . I didn't even need a car or know anything about the legendary e39. I fell in love with a car and I have owned at least 30 not all nice but just about everymake imaginable. A year later I searched for months and found a pristine 2002 540m with less than 50000 And jumped on it immediately. I have dropped thousands on these two cars without even batting an eye. The decisions we easy. The pride I feel in the maintenance pays off every time I drive them. I really can honestly say I will never sell these two cars. Enjoy it, take care of it there will never be another one like it
:thumbup: This is my first nice car. I'm 32 and have been driving mediocre vehicles for money's sake up until now. I recently took a job where I can begin to afford nice things so being that I only paid $6500 for this, I have no issues with putting appropriate money into it to bring it back to 'stage 0' and to keep it minty.

There is a problem with these cars, they are like potato chips, one is never enough!!!! Sure like to add an m5 to my garage.

Of course I did see this nice blue 1997 Porsche 911S Turbo, a real steal at $750,000 :)

Jim
My next car, if I were to buy it today (and I'm sadly not...) would be a E30 325is or 318is.

You know what I have floated the m5 idea for months now. My 540 is plenty fast ennough for me . so for and extra 15000( because I would find one with low mileage) I could shave a second off my quarter mile,which I will never do, and have dual exhaust. I'll just keep mine
7.1 0-60 is fast enough for me... for now ;)

Beautiful car! Welcome to the e39 family!
Thanks and thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Very nice ride, a sport package with 5 speed is very rare.

Check out my YouTube channel with dedicated 530i sport videos that may help you out with maintenance down the road:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9ZhL1nxVaY9uWvLYoCCr7w62HX3fXn9R
Thanks! I've only come to realize the rarity once I purchased it and was told the same thing by another user in another forum. I should consider myself thankful for being so impulsive. I decided I should replace my Volvo, looked on Craigslist, found this car, drove 120 miles, and placed a deposit on it in all of 8 hours. It was only on CL for a day before I saw it and I don't think it would've lasted long.
 
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