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Which is the best to do it all? E60 M5 vs E90 M3 vs supercharged E39 M5
Which do you guys think is the best overall daily driver taking into account handling, power, versatility and fun to drive? I’ve had all three in the past, but never compared them back to back.
I currently have a modified 2011 GT-R that I am selling to help fund the purchase of a 2013 Land Cruiser for the wife due to a new addition to our family. The GT-R is my daily driver and I absolutely love it. Currently, I have no problems driving my two kids around, but the third one will necessitate a 4-door, which prompts the change.
Here is a brief rundown of my memories of each car.
· I have many fond memories of my E39 M5. At the time, it had the perfect blend of performance, handling and versatility in my opinion.
· Throaty V8 rumble
· Good power, with nice low end grunt, but felt a little winded after 5K.
· Great handling abilities considering its size. Very easy to drive at the limit.
· Nice interior, but very dated.
· Terrible audio system
E60 M5 (replaced E39)
· I LOVED the sound of the V10 with a full exhaust. I drove around at high RPM’s just to hear the music. The V10’s howl is the most memorable attribute by far.
· A lot faster than the E39
· Needed to be revved up to get decent power, but oh the music.
· More luxurious and comfortable as a daily driver by far compared to the E39 and E90.
· Hated the SMG transmission unless at WOT or on the track.
· 10 MPG was miserable, but I don’t commute far.
· Handling abilities were probably better than the E39, but the overall experience was not as involving.
E90 M3 (replaced E60)
· DCT transmission was a huge improvement over the M5’s SMG
· The M3 was definitely better handling and more fun to drive than either M5 when corners were in the equation. Much more nimble and balanced.
· The interior was cheaper feeling compared to the E60 and probably the E39 as well. However, it was much more modern with amenities than the E39 for obvious reasons.
· Optional audio system was great
I have budgeted approx $50k for my next car, which will be my daily driver, canyon carver and occasional track car. I am only considering 2009+ E60 M5’s (6MT only) and E90 M3’s with the updated IDrive and will limit modifications only to exhaust and minor suspension changes.
I have never driven a 6MT E60, but hope it has more driver involvement than SMG. I do have some concerns of future repair costs, since the factory warranties will be expiring soon and finding a good aftermarket one appears difficult.
I’m not sure how reliable the V8 M3’s are outside of warranty, but I hope better than the M5. I am somewhat leaning towards the M3 due to its superior handling and sportier character, but it might be a little small in the back seat a few years from now.
If it’s an E39, it must be a clean 2003 and I plan to install a supercharger, suspension, wheels and etc. I have been in a supercharged E39 previously and it felt fairly strong. I do have some concerns of whether the E39 is the best choice from a long term perspective due to its aging platform and limited interior appointments.
Another car I am considering, but have never driven is the Cadillac CTS-V. From the reviews I have read it sounds like a well rounded performance sedan, with acceleration similar to the V10 M5, but with handling closer to the M3. Is this true?
Last edited by tonyracerX; 1st May 2012 at 08:25 AM.