I agree with the steering play at speeds around 40-65mph while just cruising straight. But this was only noticed after owning the car for about a year. like stated some have gotten it replaced and still had the issue. At a Meet here last year a friend of mine from Germany said he replaced his with a brand new one from BMW and the steering feel was still there but just slightly less. But then again it come down to everything connected to it so i feel its just something us E34 owners will have to live with.
I bought the E34 M5 with 165,000 miles and currently it has 228,000. It is my daily driver and is taken to the track very often. I replaced every suspension part at around 195,000 miles and i mean everything: new shocks, removed the sls in rear, control arms, sway bar links, differential mounts etc, powerflex bushings on the rear subframe mounts everything else new oem all the way around. Everything that was rubber.
The car was still really fine at 195,000 miles except the shocks up front were finally shot and I wanted to lower the car a little and stiffen it up. H&R springs with RD shocks made the car feel like new again suspension handling wise. Everything on the car is stock except the B&B exhaust. But back to the first question at hand on how it handles and driver feedback i dont think you can wrong anywhere owning one and driving it. I have driven many e39 M5 on street and track and yes the car is newer, more power and feels a little on the luxury side compared to the E34 chassis and interior and at the same time the E34 feels like youve got your feet on the ground and know exactly what the car can and cant do with what you ask it to do. The harder you push the car the better it responds and the more it ask you do in my opinion.
I have taken my friends E39 M5 and drove it for over 2 weeks. The first few days i drove it i liked the power it had a little more and the quietness of it and updated interior, But after the first week i found myself loving the car for its looks more than the car as a whole itself. I felt like every other guy in BMW just driving fast and having fun. When i got back into my E34 i not only felt home but the sound and pull of the inline 6 cylinder just made me smile from ear to ear all over again just like the first time i drove the car and bought it. I felt unique again and knew i was in a special car. I drive very spirited everyday as my drive to work is over 25 miles both ways and though i find myself sometimes wanting to be in an auto or more luxurious car i just have to look out for the red/and blues hit the throttle, whip the wheel and drift the smile right back on my face. I have owned many cars Mercedes e55 amg, the 740, cadillac cts v, etc and the only one i still have is the E34 M5. The motor and tranny are original, only things ever replaced as mentioned above is the suspension parts, water pump, and new radiator last year. I am about to redo the interior as it is getting old and somewhat stiff (currently just some cracks in it) but other than that she sees 7500 rpm at least 3 times a day, gets 16-20 mpg and always puts a smile on my face when i lock the door. Oh and the occasional passer by at the lights that tells me they wanted one of those cars when they saw them on the show room floor years ago and couldn't afford it, one guy even said he couldn't order one because they were all sold out since the limited numbers.
In your case as your looking for a second driver to have fun in. I think finding your self a well taken care of E34 or one at a good price that needs a few things will only be one of the best things a true BMW enthusiast could do. That is if you can find one lol. I really do feel the value of the cars will only increase as the years go on.
That does it!!!!! I'm gonna put even more effort into the car preparing it for my son when he has his driving license in about 7 years from now.....Oh my go I only have 7 years left for my personal fun
__________________ E34 M5 Touring, March '95, 100% original, Memory seats, Electric roof, 6-speed, 280.000 km, Fjord Grau. Renewed: Front suspension and disks, Springs and EDC's, Steeringbox and linkages, Crankshaft bearings, bigend bearings, Ignition coils and guides, clutch, rims (m-paralell) and tyres, All vacuum hoses, Waterpump, thermostat, black powerflex front and rear. Buildsheet / Touring registry
I've owned my car for 6 years now and have managed to get it pretty much where I want it. I'm fortunate enough to own an E28 and an E39 along with my E34 and it's the E34 I always go back too when I really need an ///M fix.
I have managed to secure the future of mine by making it the car that bought my wife to the Church to marry me. A masterstroke on my part I feel.
'86 E28 M5 Dolphin Grey - dead
'90 E34 M5 3.6 Sterling Silver
'01 E39 M5 Le Mans Blue
'03 E39 540i Sport Touring Mora Mettalic
'94 E36 325 coupe
'11 1M coupe Sapphire Black
'05 KTM 990 superduke