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 Post subject: 2003 BMW M5
PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 1:08 am 
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Certified Bonneville Nut
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Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 11:47 pm
Posts: 6078
Location: Philly
Year and Trim: 95 SLE
Well, I've told multiple people throughout the years that I wasn't going to get one of these but I ended up getting one.

I've obviously always been into these (re: headlight conversions) and the recent bring-a-trailer ad with an M5 touring (wagon) swap rekindled that interest. Looking into what it would cost to do a bare bones version of that swap got me thinking.. I could actually build something that I like that would still actually be worth something for once..

First of all, I could never afford one of these but prices have dropped substantially. I've heard these have timing chain issues but the more I looked into it I found it's the the M62, not the S62 engine with the issues. Being a BMW, I would think the engine wouldn't last much over 100-125k without major overhauling, but there are plenty of examples with over 200k still kicking. That also tells me that the bearing issues some talk about aren't an absolute. And finally, I had the idea that working on one of these would be a nightmare.. But, my free E39 showed me that at least the body is very straightforward to work on. I've done complex DOHC V configuration stuff in the past too so the engine can't be that bad.

The other thing is, while the G35 is nice, low miles, reliable and isn't slow, I miss the feel of a 13.0ish stick car that doesn't feel like it's being nanny controlled.

My thought process was to find a semi-rough bodied salvage title car with around 130-140k on it and good mechanicals. That way I could drive/park it guilt free and I could get another 60-80k out of the drivetrain. I've been looking for about 4 months or so, all across the US. The other week I spotted a stupid clean, 2003 100k mile salvage title Cali car with a new clutch that was meticulously maintained for what I felt I could negotiate to a good deal. I did a carfax, asked the seller for pics of the accident and it was a joke. Only the corner of the bumper, passenger fender and steering wheel air bag were impacted. The car hasn't been modded or monkied with either. It's all stock with the exception of some OEM+ bits including an E60 short throw shifter. I'm also moving to San Diego for 1-3 years next year and I have a free place to store the car.. So, while I was out in San Diego on for work, I picked it up. CA also lets you register cars with an out of state license.. No issue there. So this is the 3rd state I have a vehicle registered in currently.

There's no way I'll do a wagon swap while I'm out in Cali and I'm not sure if I will now that I have this cherry of a car.. But, I am very happy with it. The pics show just how well the car was cared for. There are rock chips up front and some other small imperfections but other than that, looks like it maybe has half the mileage on it. Everything works, it's tight, quiet and most importantly.. it moves.

I would post sound clips but it's sooo quiet.

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95 SLE... a keeper. 241k miles. Low and Slow.
97 BMW 528i
98 Infiniti vq35'd i30: 13.3@104mph, 30MPG Hwy
02 Jag X-type
03 BMW M5
07 Infiniti G35s 6MT
07 Ducati Monster S2R 800 with DS1000 swap
05 Suzuki DRZ400S
83 Yamaha IT175K
72 Yamaha DS7: '74 RD250 swap, JL chambers

Info on dropping a 92-99: Here.


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 Post subject: Re: 2003 BMW M5
PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 9:17 am 
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Resident Gearhead
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Joined: Thu May 22, 2008 10:40 am
Posts: 1665
Location: West Point
Year and Trim: 2003 SSEi
Looks like a nice score! My GXP has a rebuilt title which resulted in me picking it up for a ridiculous low-ball price. It was rear-ended when it had about 7k on it. The owner somehow got it totaled. A shop replaced a quarter panel and some other rear body parts. The car has been flawless. I don't ever plan on selling it, so I'm not worried at all about the rebuilt title. The point is, you can get a pretty nice car for a sweet price with a rebuilt title as long as you check out the history. A flood car is probably not a good bet.

You going to drag your bikes to CA with you?

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 Post subject: Re: 2003 BMW M5
PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 11:44 am 
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Certified Bonneville Nut
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Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 11:47 pm
Posts: 6078
Location: Philly
Year and Trim: 95 SLE
Yeah, I agree. As long as you check out the history and you don't plan on selling the car you can get a good deal.

I am definitely bringing out my Ducati. Not sure about the DRZ.. I don't think California police would be very happy with my 2 stroke bikes. So I am planning on leaving them in PA. The good thing is I'm keeping my house in PA. Anything I leave behind I will be able to keep there till I get back, like those bikes and the Bonneville.

_________________
Image
95 SLE... a keeper. 241k miles. Low and Slow.
97 BMW 528i
98 Infiniti vq35'd i30: 13.3@104mph, 30MPG Hwy
02 Jag X-type
03 BMW M5
07 Infiniti G35s 6MT
07 Ducati Monster S2R 800 with DS1000 swap
05 Suzuki DRZ400S
83 Yamaha IT175K
72 Yamaha DS7: '74 RD250 swap, JL chambers

Info on dropping a 92-99: Here.


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