February 6, 2011
The E39 M5 is used as a yardstick for modern sedans yet the car has been out of production for 11 years. Good reasons: It has a high quality roomy interior (although rather plain) combined with a smallish exterior size, very powerful but economical engine (mine does 24 highway @ 65 mph, 21.5 mpg overall for the last 18,000 miles), solid body, famous handling. The negatives: Regular mechanical upkeep is required and can be expensive. Clutch wears quickly if abused (mine has 50,000 miles and is still okay). Gearshift is notchy. Audio/Nav units are crude by current standards. In summary, an extremely fast, solid, comfortable, fun to drive family sedan that will be fondly remembered 20 years from now.