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General BMW Model Discussion
All non E46 BMW model questions in here. Look below for E36, E90 and F30 specific forum. For additional model specific forums check out bimmerfest.com!

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Old 12-20-2011, 02:11 PM   #21
e46frvr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tesko.pk View Post
I bought an '03 530i M-Sport after my E46 was written off by insurance, a fantastic car in all areas.
Comparisons to the e46?
Mileage? Maintenance costs? Handling? Ride qualitY?
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Old 12-20-2011, 02:41 PM   #22
Sofresh2Clean
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solidjake View Post
Lol, I had a '00 528i. Great car, but remember the same issues we face that E39 will face as well, except the subframe I think.
I believe your correct. I havent heard of a single e39 having subframe damage.

To OP: Overall the e39 is an excellent car. You will be pleasantly surprised to find so many luxury amenities that were an option on the e46 are standard on the e39. I would highly advise for you to consider the maintenance record of the car. The 00' is a double vanos, so the seals will need replacing, check the rear ball joints, cooling system (obviously), valve cover gasket, oil filter housing gasket, power steering hoses, windshield washer pump and front and rear control arms. These are off the top of my head. All these go bad at around ~80K so beware.

I would check bimmerfest under the e39 section for most common issues specific to the I6 e39s. I have an account over there as well, so you can ask me whatever you please, as I will probably be over there more than in this section and forum.

All in all the e39 is great. If your going for the I6 I would put the 528 over the 530 easily. Reason being is less weight ( engine, rotors, calipers are bigger on the 530 making more weight) and it barely has 10 ft/tq over the 528. It does have a good ~20 hp over the 528, but the M52tu engine ( in the 528) is better in many respects for tuning and induction, if you decide to go that route. I would look for a well maintained 528, and a sport package at least. Trust me, you will feel and see the difference.
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:54 AM   #23
koach
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We've owned our 330i for a couple years now used primarily as the wife's car, but after hijacking it for four months I decided it was time to purchase a 'commuter' car for myself. After a lot of Bimmer research that covered everything from low mileage E32's to 2010 M3's I kept finding myself concluding that a clean 01-03 E39 would be best served.

While I've enjoyed the wife's car, for whatever reason, a 6cyl was never really a consideration. Even after reading the latest edition of Bimmer magazine where the 6cyl/5spd sport was the author's suggested input, I was still leaning toward the 4.4L/6spd. I suppose my subconscious could've come into play here...I couldn't possibly allow her to own a car that could potentially outrun mine, right? Further research revealed that an 03 M-sport is 'the one' to get. Luckily, the article also referrenced a couple sites where our beloved cars receive a little bit more TLC.

Within minutes I found an 03 540i 6spd M-sport w/39k miles about 1.5hrs away. Viewed it on a Saturday (31 Dec) and was driving it home the following Saturday (7 Jan). I've only driven it home and to get it inspected so it's too early to provide a detailed comparison, but for now the E46 has taken a slight edge in the 'balanced' department. More to come for those that are interested...
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Old 01-15-2012, 10:27 AM   #24
e46frvr
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Originally Posted by koach View Post
Within minutes I found an 03 540i 6spd M-sport w/39k miles about 1.5hrs away. Viewed it on a Saturday (31 Dec) and was driving it home the following Saturday (7 Jan). I've only driven it home and to get it inspected so it's too early to provide a detailed comparison, but for now the E46 has taken a slight edge in the 'balanced' department. More to come for those that are interested...


That's really low miles. Excellent find! Could you PM price paid?
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Old 01-16-2012, 01:38 PM   #25
koach1
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initial observations

540i handling- While heading out for a joy ride yesterday I took the back roads I normally take to work for comparison against the 3. There’s a downhill sweeper with a good bend at the bottom that goes over a really small bridge. Think east coast country side… The sign says 35/40(?- I’ll have to check) and I’ve taken it pretty quick in the 3, but never really paid attention to the speedometer. Yesterday I was keenly aware of everything and the car seems to offer so much more confidence than the 3 in these type situations. So much so that I was hitting this turn doing 80mph and came out smiling! Not only that, but it was immediately apparent on how less dramatic it felt compared to the 3. Around town or on the commute the 3 seems more flickable/responsive, but this was different, like when really hard pressed the car responded fantastic and without any drama. I couldn’t help but think about it more throughout the day. Was it the tires? The M suspension? 18” wheels? Or a combo of all? Then it occurred to me- the 3 doesn’t have the super-supportive M seats… I remember the feeling of having to hold myself in the 3 whereas this was just a point/shoot situation. If that makes sense…?
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Old 01-18-2012, 09:10 AM   #26
e46frvr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koach1 View Post
540i handling- While heading out for a joy ride yesterday I took the back roads I normally take to work for comparison against the 3. There’s a downhill sweeper with a good bend at the bottom that goes over a really small bridge. Think east coast country side… The sign says 35/40(?- I’ll have to check) and I’ve taken it pretty quick in the 3, but never really paid attention to the speedometer. Yesterday I was keenly aware of everything and the car seems to offer so much more confidence than the 3 in these type situations. So much so that I was hitting this turn doing 80mph and came out smiling! Not only that, but it was immediately apparent on how less dramatic it felt compared to the 3. Around town or on the commute the 3 seems more flickable/responsive, but this was different, like when really hard pressed the car responded fantastic and without any drama. I couldn’t help but think about it more throughout the day. Was it the tires? The M suspension? 18” wheels? Or a combo of all? Then it occurred to me- the 3 doesn’t have the super-supportive M seats… I remember the feeling of having to hold myself in the 3 whereas this was just a point/shoot situation. If that makes sense…?
I've never driven a 330i without sport package but I remember reading that it makes a big difference in handling. I'm kind of in the market for a 530i.

Its hard to find an automatic sport package 530i . Has to be auto (for family). Also, was a 530xi never made or is it just my luck that I cant find one on my local Craigslist?
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Old 01-18-2012, 11:42 AM   #27
Dirty Mike
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So close to pickin up a E39 540i manual last year. Got the 330 instead. Hmmm
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