looking into getting a 06 m5, i know it's a bmw but are they well built or would it be a money pitt? my other choice is the w211 03/04 e55 but i don't want to deal with the s/c as somewhat a daily driver...
I had an '06 CLS55 AMG and HATED the handling of the car. Even in Sport2 mode, it was way to soft. The exterior design and interior quality were wonderful, but it wasn't me (I realized I'm not old enough to drive a Merc). Despite the neck-snapping torque down low, I am much happier with my M5. It is a better all around drivers car.
Things to look for: higher rate of SMG pump failure in early '06 builds (<5/06), VANOS oil line issues in those same model (recalls issued for both). Other than that, the drivetrains are pretty bulletproof.
One of the major issues to look out for is the GAS MILEAGE! Seriously! I'm mentioning that since you want to use it as a daily driver! The other issue is that after you buy it, you will constantly look for performance and appearance upgrades to make it go faster and look nicer! You might not be like that at first, but since you are a member of M5Board, it will happen sooner or later! I promise you! Other than those, I can't think of a common problem that's been a major issue! I have owned different ///M cars, and they are built really well! You will love it! And one last problem you will have is, you will never like any other car once you own an ///M!
If you buy from the dealer they should have all the service records that were recorded. This is a must see. I also would not just do a car fax but look at some of the other companies that will know about insurance claims made on the vehicle. Stay away from early build 06'. I think build dates before 4/06? had SMG issues, not that builds after are not prone. And if you do not have an extra $10k lying around for repairs you need to have the warranty even if it runs out in a year. Brakes all around and clutch=MUCHO DINERO. And last but not least do your homework, I may not be 100% accurate, and it has been said, that I am "crazy" . Good Luck! M5 is so worth it!
SMG can crap out on early models (Red Cog Ring). Make sure you get an extended warranty that covers SMG. Clutch wear is also an issue (SMG related)
Early iDrive is VERY slow to start up and there is an annoying delay to respond to inputs. The OEM iPod interface is not very good.
Rubber seals around the windshield and rear window can crack and discolor. BMW replaced mine for free
Plastic surround around the driver's window/lock/mirror switches can scratch from used. $180 to replace
Driver's seat bolster can be "crushed" and the seat can squeak (back of the seat). The seat has more "rake" than other cars I own or have owned. I'm used to it now but I find the seats (mine are active seats) to be uncomfortable. If you get one with active seats (bolsters grab you in a turn) sometimes they will grab but not retract. I just leave mine off.
Floor mats are crap. Easy fix to replace them.
The front headlights on the 2006/2007 models are starting to show hazing. BMW will fix this for free.
The 2006 Nav DVD is bad. Pay $100 and purchase the 2010 Nav DVD. Use the "Birds Eye" perspective and you will be happier.
Check the brakes, tires, alighment, EDC operation (all modes are working). After warm-up on cold start listen to the engine idle and if you hear a lound rattle/prattle on warm idle you may have a VANOS issue. While driving listen for any rattles inside the car. The privacy screen for the back window (optional on the M5) is known to rattle and mine still does as well.
Check the rubber gasket around the sunroof and make sure it is not cracked or discolored.
Make sure you get the full records from BMW on the car. Very important to know the service history and any recalls that have been performed. They will also provide a printout of all the option codes the car came with from the factory.
Gas mileage sucks bad and the tank is tiny. As a DD this car needs to be filled up all the time. If you drive in Auto (D3-5) the gas mileage is better but the car driving experience is not very good so it is worth it to drive in manual (S4-6) and not worry about MPG.
Really there is not too many worries with the M5. SMG is the most noted problem spot on these cars so make sure you cover yourself with a warranty and you will be happy.
The M5 does not have the low-speed torque of other cars in this range but once you get used to driving it at high-revs you won't stop grinning like the village idiot!:2:
Ask lots of questions on this board (and search old posts) about the M5 you are considering... it will save you a lot of time and money in the long run.