2nd February 2012, 09:31
Senior Member (>500)
Join Date: Dec 2010
E30 M3 Misano Red
Thanked 68 Times in 59 Posts
Nice post. And I think you answered your own question about the RS4 with warranty already - you clearly love the E34 M5 in a way you would never love an RS4. And on a practical note I'll wager you'll spend less on the M5 (assuming its a relatively sound one) over a 4 year period then you would spend on an Rs4 once depreciation is factored in.
I own mine because I love the cars and think they are the next classic. But if you need the 4 doors / child seat option then I see the E34 M5 as an absolute no brainer. My wife used mine as a DD when he Ford broke down, and she is not confident driving M cars, but she said driving the M5 was an absolute doddle. And then I can go enjoy the twisties in the same car. And the interior is a nice, comfortable place to be. Fantastic.
Originally Posted by chappardababbar
It was because of the feelings expressed in this thread that I bought my E34 M5 over an E39, so I thought I'd add my thoughts.
My requirements for a car were the following:
1. Four door for baby. I never thought I'd buy a four door but two is just too much of a pain with a car seat.
In addition to these three, my fourth requirement was that I wanted to be in a relationship. I cannot think of another car that more perfectly matches these requirements. My shortlist was an E34/E39 M5, Maserati Quattroporte, Audi RS4. In order to help me decide I imagined myself in various scenarios with each of the cars: in an Italian mountain pass, in an underground car park in the company of exotic machinery, walking towards it after paying at the pump after dark, in the snow with a roof-rack and a snowboard, in the garage detailing etc etc. In each of these scenarios the E34 came out on top. Additionally, of these only one is hand built and has an engine whose forefathers were used (successfully) in race cars. Only one feels like a 'motor car', and most successfully captures my idea of the romance of 'motoring' (the definition of this by the way is driving a 540k special roadster whilst wearing goggles, a scarf, driving gloves and a tweed jacket). In short only one car, I felt I could be in love with...the E34 M5.
As soon as I laid eyes on her - I experienced the sentiments expressed by the contributors to this tread for myself and I knew I my own instinct had been proven correct. The 90s lines, the quality and smell of the leather (better than in E39 imo), the solidity of the way the door pops when you pull the door handle, the way the seat holds you snug. it's just the right era - no fancy electronics and stability control but just enough creature comforts and modernity. The build quality feels great. I have owned several Mercs in the past including a W124 500E and the build quality may not quite match the mighty 500 overall (based on my limited exposure) it does exceed it in some areas which is high praise.
Then as I walked around her...the sound, bassy at the back, hissing in the middle, then ticking and whirring at the front. Uneven, alive, the intoxicating smell of fuel - I just LOVED IT!
It's rare. You just don't see these cars often. It's unassuming - I don't want people to think I have a lot of money (I most certainly do not but thankful to God for what I have), I want to be underestimated.
For me, although the other cars I mentioned are more powerful, I have learnt that power is nothing without feeling. My mk1 MX5 is just about the best car I have ever driven - I do not wish for more power. My M5 will never be tracked; it was designed to be a fast road car and it has just the right amount of power in my opinion - no one needs more that this.
Having said that, I have since spent some time reading various threads and I hope I haven't made a mistake. The amount of money being spent on these cars by owners on this forum is mind boggling. The car I bought is in pretty good condition but it's 20 years old - would an RS4 avant with a warranty have been the better option at this time in my life? Only time will tell. There is a bunch of stuff I need to fix but I'm going to go slow. Right now all I can say is that I am a happier man with the knowledge that i have bought the best car in the world for my specific requirements; it's a great feeling.