Black BMW E39 M5

BMW E39 M5: The Best Option On A Budget!

We all know that buying a car may sometimes be a very hectic job. You have to look to choose the features you want while making sure the price is within your budget and read tons of reviews before spending your hard-earned money. Buying a car is not only considered as a purchase but it is also an investment, as long as you do it wisely. Therefore, you must do some research, consider the pros and cons of your potential ride, and then make the purchase decision. If you are looking to buy a BMW E39 M5, then read on, this article is totally for you. We will cover every important aspect when it comes to buying an E39 as well as the best options and what to look out for to make sure you get the most bang for your bucks. Obviously, we will also discuss the many different specs E39 M5 models, the various improvements over the years, price, and much more.

The Legendary BMW E39 M5

The BMW E39 M5 was launched in 1998 at the Geneva motor show. Right after its launch, the car became a huge success as it had the best features available at that time. Having a V8 engine, it was the first E39 generation of M5 to offer that much power: 395hp/369lb-ft. Not bad, right?

Even though it is an old model now, it’s still immensely popular among petrolheads who love fast sedans.

Black BMW E39 M5

BMW E39 M5 specs

The specifications of the BMW M5 is what made this car truly special. From a powerful engine and a sleek body to hypnotizing headlights, the BMW E39 M5 is packed with some impressive features.


As discussed above, this car offers a 4.9L S68 V8 engine with a maximum power of 395hp at 6600 RPM. This engine proved to be one of the most powerful engines in a sedan at that time. Equipped with a 6-speed manual transmission only, this car allows the driver to have a taste at one of the best driving experience ever. This engine showed a comparatively better acceleration of 0-100 km/h (0-62 m/h) in just 5.1 seconds with a top speed of 250 km/h (155 m/h). This really shows that the E39 M5 proves to be a great option if you are looking for a powerful sedan in a limited budget.

Body and Dimensions

The E39 m5 is a sedan with a seating capacity of 5 passengers. The car has a total length of 188.19 inches, a width of 70.87 inches, and a height of 56.3 inches. These dimensions make it a compact sedan with enough space to still be comfortable, even for long road trips. Moreover, this car comes equipped with aluminum-intensive MacPherson front suspension and a multi-link rear suspension. The suspension makes this car one of the most durable options available in the market.


Get a repair manual for BMW E39 M5 models here!


Fuel Consumption

This is the only real drawback of BMW E39 M5. It drinks. A lot!

You might easily find more economical cars (fuel consumption wise) in the same price range in the market. This car provides the user with a mileage of 13.9L/100kms. We know that the fuel consumption is not that flattering but the plus point is that the comfort and performance this car has to offer is not even comparable with the other car options in this price range. Especially since, if you are looking for a fast car, fuel consumption is not always a deal-breaker.

Other Features

This car also offers several other amazing features to its owners. These most notable ones include:

  • Beautifully crafted leather, wood, and plastic interior. The materials used are high-quality and give the vehicle a luxurious touch.
  • Comfortable leather seats. It doesn’t matter whether you are planning to use the vehicle for a long time or a short period; you’ll fall in love with the comfort these seats provide.
  • Front and rear vented disk brakes.
  • 6-speed manual transmission
  • Trend-setting angel-eye headlights

BMW E39 M5 interior

Improvements in the Later models of BMW M5 E39

As discussed above, this car was launched in 1998 and was discontinued in 2003. BMW made sure to enhance the look of this car with each passing year. This is the main reason why the later models of BMW M5 E39 are known to be better looking and even more comfortable. These models also include the best features and even more impressive specs. These changes included; updated taillights, angel-eye headlights, gray instrument cluster, three-spoke M steering wheel, and better navigation and media system. So yes, you have a wide range of options in this car if you are willing to buy it.

Obviously, we would suggest you go for the later model i.e. 2001-2003. It looks better, it’s faster, etc. However, some people prefer the older ones for their vintage look. To each his own!

BMW E39 M5 Average Price

The E39 M5 model is great for people who are looking for an affordable performance ride. But recently, the price of this car started to hike up because of the renewed “retro cars” trend. You can easily find a good pre-owned BMW E39 M5 in the range of $20,000 to $40,000. Obviously, the prices of pre-owned cars always vary based on condition, color, year manufactured, mileage, etc.

Make sure to shop around and compare multiple sellers. Different dealers will have different price and sometimes it’s worth it to pay a little more and not have to worry about expensive upcoming repairs. Never forget that even if E39 models are somewhat affordable, BMW is still a luxury car brand and, as such, replacement parts are not always cheap.

BMW E39 M5 engine bay

Tips for buying Pre-owned BMW E93 M5

Some of the things are listed below that you should check before buying a pre-owned car:

  1. Test Drive: Always have a test drive before finalizing the specific car that you want to buy. You might get an idea of how the car is working during the test drive. Your ears, eyes, and nose would do the trick here. You have to look out for any unusual sounds or smells in the car.
  2. Exterior: If you have a good eye, then you can easily point out the faults within the exterior of the car.
  3. Interior: You should also check if the interior of the car is clean or not. Moreover, you have to check certain things in the interior, which includes; Air Conditioning, Music System, etc.
  4. Thorough Checkup: Once you buy the car, the best thing is to take it to a mechanic and get your car checked thoroughly with a pre-purchase inspection.

Frequent Know Problems

As with any other car, some problems just seem to be more frequent than others. When it comes to the E39 M5, the most well-known problems are related to the cooling system and thrush arm bushings. Bushings on this car model have been known to fail every 70,000 or so. Other frequent problems are faulty window regulators and defective LCD displays.

Final Thoughts

BMW E39 M5 is one of the best performance models launched yet by BMW. This car is a great option for people looking out to buy a second-hand sedan in a limited budget while driving a luxury car delivering outstanding performances. Although this car has some drawbacks, such as high fuel consumption and random electrical problems, it is still one of the best options for you if you want to buy a luxury pre-owned sedan.

Get a repair manual for BMW E39 M5 models here!

About Nishal Singh

Car enthusiast since before I could drive.

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