Agreed. Look at all the old hot-rodders out there converting '57 Chevy 210's to look like Bel-Airs. Or converting and old Lemans into a GTO. It's no different really. At least the guy isn't trying to tell people it's actually an M5.
Yeah the M5 badge is intentionally deceiving. Having M badged parts is normal since most of the stuff is developed by the M division and therefore bear the moniker. I had a 2003 530i and I had all the Mtech bodywork installed. The center grill has a T instead of mesh. My 328is had all Mtech stuff too, T bar in the grill as I felt the M3 stuff was poseur.
I too have no problem with the M hardware or the M badge on a non-M5, but putting an M5 on it is deceiving.
I've read posts on fakes but never run across one myself, until last month.
I was taking my teenage son to the gym when I spot this car ahead of me beating up on every minivan it could find. The light catches the group and as I get closer I'm disappointed to see it's an e39 BMW doing this. As I get even closer I see quad exhausts, then the M5 badge. I'm in my 2003 M5 by the way. When I get right behind him I notice two of the exhausts are as clean as the day they were unboxed, the M5 badge was in the wrong place, tires very narrow, and the wrong side mirrors. I'm telling my son now "look, a fake M5". Anyway, I see the driver checking out my car in the rear view mirror. When the light changes, he stops the racing he was doing earlier and pulls away at the speed limit.
So the light catches us and I switch lanes (three lane road) and pull up beside him. I see him and his buddy look over at the Chrome Shadows and M5 badge on the side of my car. He gets this Oh Sh%t look on his face. My son is telling me to smoke him but I'm not going to be a bad influence on him; he's just getting his license. So I have no intention of racing the guy, but he doesn't know this. So as the light gets ready to change, I blip the throttle (gotta love that Dinan exhaust). It turns green and he just sits there. I wait maybe two seconds and he doesn't move. I start off slowly and ease up to the speed limit. The guy stays about 10 car lengths behind me and would slow down when I slowed down.
Finally I had to turn off. You know, I'd hate to go through life in a fake, dreading the day a real one pulls up beside. And the bad part is that the non-M e39's in stock form are some of the classiest, best balanced cars on the road; no need to fake anything.
Honestly, the bodywork actually looks ok, but why go to all that expense to try and fake it, on a 530 of all things? Seriously, how much do the parts and labor cost versus finding a clean M5 or 540 if you wanted a little more performance? No way the seller recovers 50% of what he put into that so he could drive around as a poseur?
And yes, the badge is goofy, but not as bad as the non-functional right side exhaust that's cleaner than the working one. Ugh.
Yeah...no class. If it is for sale then it should be badged properly. If you intend to keep the vehicle then cool, copy the real thing. Years ago when I had an e39 528i I wanted to get the body kit and wheels but finances did not allow it so I have some sympathy for wannabes.