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Discussion Starter #1
I'm patiently shopping around for a 2008-10 e60 M5 (totally staying away from 06 and 07). I have to say, I'm a little petrified of SMG due to the death spiral of repairs that can occur on it. Due to that, I'm leaning towards the 6MT. That said, I know this car was made for SMG, so I'd like to go w/ SMG if possible. Any advice on choosing an 08, 09 or 10 w/ SMG wisely? (i.e., should I feel safe even getting one that has low miles, 1-2 owners, with good service records and a good PPI?) Or should I just go with the 6MT? As some background, I've owned a number of 6MT BMWs over the years (including an e92 M3), so I'm quite used to, and enjoy, rowing my own gears. I just don't want to be slugging it out of the power band all the time w/ this motor.

Any and all advice is much appreciated.

Cheers -
 

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Get a thorough PPI done by someone that really knows these cars. A car with documented service history is also a must. I'd also avoid extensively modified cars. Good luck.

SMG is a must IMO...I've been a manual guy my whole life and this car has changed that.
 

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DinanS2+ e60m5 6MT, s38b38 e28m5 TT/ST3, e30 TT/ST4
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Why did you get rid of your e92? Congrats in advance!

Nothing wrong with 2006 or 2007. The first thing I would do is look on the classifieds on this Board. One of the best documented and maintained 2006s is for sale right now...and he even replaced the Rod bearings for you.

Personally, I went with a 6mt because I know it's impossible for me to get a Red Cog of Death. Find a 6MT with a short shifter and a 3.91, and the s85 is only as good as your left foot and right hand.

Yes the SMG will make the car faster in a straight line, but the 6mt will never leave you stranded.
 

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I agree with Woody. There is nothing wrong with an '06 or and '07 that's been well maintained and has always had the proper warm up procedures. In fact, there's no difference between an '06 and a '10 if they've both been treated the same. '08 - '10 models have the exact same problems as the '06 & '07 models if they aren't treated properly. The only reason to move to an '08+ is if you must have an LCI car....which made absolutely no difference to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Why did you get rid of your e92?
Was working in a big law firm when I got the e92 M3, then took a job at a start-up. Took a big pay cut to do so, so had to trim expenses. It all worked out just fine.

The Outback XT was a lot of fun, but I'm ready to get back to the brand. Also looking for a 911 Turbo (997) as a weekend car.
 

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I may be biased, but I wouldn't consider the year at all in my purchase criteria. As others have said, the maintenance history is everything for the car. There are many things which can go wrong, but if addressed early or more importantly, addressed *properly* when they occur, can save a lot of money and headaches in the future.

The E60/S85/SMG combination is one of the most complex and unusual vehicles built for its time and still relatively complex in comparision to the current lineup. The horror stories of maintenance over the years are purely the result of a lack of understanding the car and failing to properly diagnose problems. Still today, it is challenging to find a technician competent enough to work on it in some regions.

This forum is a wealth of information for diagnostic and repair and there is no other resource anywhere in the world with more collective knowledge of this platform. As the car ages and the profile of ownership transitions from the warranteed original and second owners to the hardcore enthusiasts, the volume of that knowledge is only going up, and we are now seeing the communuty understanding of this incredible machine approaching that of the E39.

Good luck in your search and welcome to the best M forum on the internet.
 

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DinanS2+ e60m5 6MT, s38b38 e28m5 TT/ST3, e30 TT/ST4
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Was working in a big law firm when I got the e92 M3, then took a job at a start-up. Took a big pay cut to do so, so had to trim expenses. It all worked out just fine.

The Outback XT was a lot of fun, but I'm ready to get back to the brand. Also looking for a 911 Turbo (997) as a weekend car.
What did you think of the power delivery of the s65 in the e92? The s65 and s85 are very similar.

Regarding what year and 6mt/SMG to buy...don't buy the car, "buy" the owner first, then buy the car. How transparent is the owner with history and documentation. I bought two of my m5s from Board members. I could see all their maintenance history and Board history. As Counsel, you should do your due diligence on the owner first and car second.

For example, I track my car and regularly use it as my commuter to San Francisco, Vegas, and Phoenix. With that said, I've looked/seen at "stock" e60s that have "never been tracked" with less miles in worse condition. I would argue that more abuse happens daily to s85s from poor startup procedures and neglect from clueless owners, than days at the track with an enthusiast.

Good luck in your search! Have you looked at the Board classifieds?
 

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2006-2007????

Why did you get rid of your e92? Congrats in advance!

Nothing wrong with 2006 or 2007. The first thing I would do is look on the classifieds on this Board. One of the best documented and maintained 2006s is for sale right now...and he even replaced the Rod bearings for you.

Personally, I went with a 6mt because I know it's impossible for me to get a Red Cog of Death. Find a 6MT with a short shifter and a 3.91, and the s85 is only as good as your left foot and right hand.

Yes the SMG will make the car faster in a straight line, but the 6mt will never leave you stranded.
I am a proud owner of a 2006 ( Delivered in April), with ONLY 9.100 Km done, wich is about 5.655 Mls and i must say that there is NOTHING WRONG with it, being a 2006 model.

Will i sell it???

NEVER

Best regards
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
What did you think of the power delivery of the s65 in the e92? The s65 and s85 are very similar.
Loved it, and loved the stick in it. Wouldn't change a thing.

Regarding what year and 6mt/SMG to buy...don't buy the car, "buy" the owner first, then buy the car. How transparent is the owner with history and documentation. I bought two of my m5s from Board members. I could see all their maintenance history and Board history. As Counsel, you should do your due diligence on the owner first and car second.
Fantastic advice.

Have you looked at the Board classifieds?
Yep, and that is now my focus for finding the right car.
 

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+1 to checking the owner's credentials. Most of the board members have their car's history and issues memorialized on this forum so that's a good reference point as well. If you can't get documented history about the car walk away.

A friend didn't follow that advice and bought a "deal" that went bad 3 months into ownership. He couldn't get over the repairs needed and dumped it at a huge loss.
 

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I recently purchased a 10/06 build M5, 51k miles, SMG, 1 owner myself.

A few tips from my personal shopping experience: (And may the more experienced guys feel free to chime in/correct me if appropriate.)

1. Find someone with ISTA and do a full VANOS solenoid test before pulling the trigger on one. Out of the 8 specimens I looked at, not a single one didn't have a bad solenoid. They're ~$150 each with a BMW Group discount (Not sure what the retail is on them.) but if there are bad ones that fail the test, this can be used as negotiation ammo. Over time the solenoids get clogged with debris from unnecessary long oil change intervals and (worst case) bearing debris from rod bearing wear. Replacing them is a project, and bad ones cause a loss in low end power/torque so it's just something to be aware of. All 4 solenoids were toast in the one I bought, but it got me $1500 off the final price.

2. Look for idle issues when cold AND at operating temp. A short rough idle is normal due to the cat heating process, but anything longer than that indicates issues with the throttle actuators and/or worn rod bearings.

3. Look for glitter in the oil filter reservoir. If you see any, keep looking.

4. Have the owner take you for a spin with the engine cold as a test....see how he handles the engine with the oil not yet warmed up.

I originally was dead set on a 6mt and settled because they are literally 1 in 20. I eventually grew impatient and just bought an SMG. What a mistake....I hate the SMG. One day its shifting smooth as can be, the next its clunky as hell. Slip detection reset fixes it for a day and its back to the same crap. SMG commissioning in ISTA has no affect...:dunno:

Just get a manual!

Happy Shopping :wroom:
 

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I recently purchased a 10/06 build M5, 51k miles, SMG, 1 owner myself.

A few tips from my personal shopping experience: (And may the more experienced guys feel free to chime in/correct me if appropriate.)

1. Find someone with ISTA and do a full VANOS solenoid test before pulling the trigger on one. Out of the 8 specimens I looked at, not a single one didn't have a bad solenoid. They're ~$150 each with a BMW Group discount (Not sure what the retail is on them.) but if there are bad ones that fail the test, this can be used as negotiation ammo. Over time the solenoids get clogged with debris from unnecessary long oil change intervals and (worst case) bearing debris from rod bearing wear. Replacing them is a project, and bad ones cause a loss in low end power/torque so it's just something to be aware of. All 4 solenoids were toast in the one I bought, but it got me $1500 off the final price.

2. Look for idle issues when cold AND at operating temp. A short rough idle is normal due to the cat heating process, but anything longer than that indicates issues with the throttle actuators and/or worn rod bearings.

3. Look for glitter in the oil filter reservoir. If you see any, keep looking.

4. Have the owner take you for a spin with the engine cold as a test....see how he handles the engine with the oil not yet warmed up.

I originally was dead set on a 6mt and settled because they are literally 1 in 20. I eventually grew impatient and just bought an SMG. What a mistake....I hate the SMG. One day its shifting smooth as can be, the next its clunky as hell. Slip detection reset fixes it for a day and its back to the same crap. SMG commissioning in ISTA has no affect...:dunno:

Just get a manual!

Happy Shopping :wroom:
Replace your clutch valve.
 

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This is assuming you know the condition of the release bearing/guide bushing and they aren't the problem.

http://www.m5board.com/vbulletin/e63-bmw-m6-forum-bmw-m6-convertible-m6board-com/411570-smg-clutch-engagement-issue-solved.html

Do you have your own diag software?

Sorry to derail, OP, but as I mentioned above, we like to help here. ;)
This is gold! And yes; I am fully outfitted with ISPI and Standard Tools running on Daten 53.3

Thank you so much for this! :cheers:
 
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