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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Just back from my first drive of new M5 at Eastern Creek Raceway, here are my first initial thoughts - SIMPLY AWESOME. BMW Australia & Geoff Brabham's crew put on the morning with 3 x M5's, Sepang Bronze, Black & Interlagos, 2 x 645ci's, 545i sport & new M3 sport.

I drove the 645's first, then the 545i sport, the M3 & finally 2 of the M5s. The 645's were a bit too soft for my taste, I was pleasently surprised with the 545i sport, I loved the M3 sport, I have a E46 M3 SMG as my everday car and loved the M3 sport - nice compromise between CSL and standard M3.

Now to the M5, I loved the seating position & could get it just as I liked, with wheel nice & close and legs relatively stretched out, liked the dash layout and the heads up, SMG paddles a nicer feel to my M3 and the wheel itself felt great in my hands.

SMG set to S5 and we were instructed to leave car at 400hp first, out of the pits, throttle 75% revved out to 4.5k, into second and full throttle, into third full throttle again rapid change to fourth, 400hp surprised me, 507hp was just awesome for a street car with this level of refinement. SMG seems smoother compared to my M3 in S5, not as brutal but still as fast, an earlier comment on board by someone else thought his new M5 did not change as fast as his M3, I think it is as fast, just smoother - Geoff Brabham took us on hot lap and turned off DSC letting S6 take over & then the changes are brutal just like M3 in S6.

First corner after exiting pits at Eastern Creek is 3 gear, turn in was very good, mid corner grip very good, car sat very flat, engine is so strong and just keeps revving, took it out to 8k in 3rd and 4th once I got further round the track and onto the straight - delicious sound inside the car. I found the car understeered on a long radius turn but responded well to a little feathering of the throttle which brought grip back to front wheels, if DSC was off I'm sure oversteer could easily be induced (as Geoff did on hot lap with DSC off).

Did not get the chance to do a full high speed stop, but did experience relatively high speed, I guess I would have been doing ( I was not watching the speedo) 200-230 down the straight (mid-high range revs in 5th), turn 1 is fastest corner on track probably exiting 190+, car sat very flat and stable, excellent grip, then heavy breaking for turn 2 a 2-3rd gear corner in M5, breaks felt very good and absolutely ample considering weight of car.

The V10 is such a beautiful sounding high revving engine, does not wap you in the back like some turbo cars, but it just keeps pulling as it revs, the power surge is continious it just seems to keep on going & going.

The M5 was very obviously quicker than my M3 in a straight line, as we would expect, and suprisingly nimble for a large car - it did not feel heavy, you could place it very easily on the road. It did not feel quite as taut & focused as my M3 or the M3 sport (but they are a few hundred Kgs lighter), and I am nor sure what they had programed into the M button, I think we were driving with the softer setting of DSC, it seemed to be coming on sooner than when Geoff Brabham started the hot laps with DSC on.

I simply loved the car, if there was anything that was slightly disappointing it was that on a track I love a light, small composed and focused car, however what the M5 may lack on a track it makes up for tenfold in refinement and ease of driving at speed, I can not wait for mine to arrive, after all if you want to go tracking all the time you just drive a track specific car.

The drive morning (always too short) has seriously wet my appetite. The M5 will be that perfect every day limousine with attitude and one that I can still put my kids in the back comfortably. I can't wait to be able to experiment with all the settings and get that 'just right' combination programmed in, for when I go for a fast run on my favourite winding back road.
 

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Great write up. I just drove the Hartge M5 last friday and my review/comments with pics and some video clips will be posted soon...simply amazing vehicle as you described.
 

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lol...the 3rd picture was nice...showing off two colors on two different light levels
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
warrenatc said:
Great write up. I just drove the Hartge M5 last friday and my review/comments with pics and some video clips will be posted soon...simply amazing vehicle as you described.
I look forward to reading your review & seeing your pics. I am looking for a set of after market wheels for mine when it arrives in Aug/Sept, so would love to see Hartge's on M5 (besides that shown on their website) and am interested to hear about their suspension mods if they lowered the car or not. Please let me know wheel & tyre size if you checked and if they altered the ECU.

regards
 

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Excellent review, thank you for sharing!

all the best
adam
 

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Very nice write .. and thats true in comparing the gear shifts of the M3 and the M5 this what i feel when i drive one of them...



warrenatc said:
Great write up. I just drove the Hartge M5 last friday and my review/comments with pics and some video clips will be posted soon...simply amazing vehicle as you described.
By the way how does the Hartge M5 sounds with their exhaust system on idle/switching the engine on/and in full throttle compared to regular M5??
 

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Well, Could not have said it better myself!

I too was there today at Eastern Creek.

The most telling difference is when one drives the hell out of a 545 sport and then does same with M5 - the difference is simply astonishing.

As I dissussed with Geoff (B), the mechanical grip of the M5 is simply extra-ordinary.

With four people in the car, we were able to pull 235km/hr down the straight, which compares with M3 at 210 (same as E39 M5).

A recent dyno of the E39 -v- E60 showed ( if it is to be believed) that the E60 pulls like the E39, but basically keeps going (to 8 grand) when the E39 gives up, at say 6,500 rpm. Coupled with 7 gears, it is really a different beast.

The other things is the sound.

In the cabin, it s monumental - it is rather high revving V8 in aural delight, not what I expected at all - very sweet sounding like the E39 was (is) - yet the game has moved on - this things is herioc to say the least.

I took my video camera and have just reviewed the footage - I thought I heard someone in the back (on our hot lap) of the car say "do we really need to going this fast"? ( I mean nervous - big time) when travelling down the straight - well upon review that is exactly what was said - and I can tell you, that guy was only speaking his mind. It was a bit like that really - on the hot lap all hell broke loose.

Forget Tiff, Geoff be the man.

However, one rather irritating note, I have to wait for my car to have the oil pump issue dealt with, which means a "keys in your hand" date of early Sept - now that does piss one off - and I mean big time.
Cheers,

Dave

P.S. Dallas, you should have a laugh big time - it was insane!
 

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Not to get off topic, but On the Hartge M5, the exhaust sounded deep than stock at idle, I have a clip of it that will be posted soon. Also have some clips of acceleration runs where you can hear it in the car. The Hartge rep said that the ones they will eventually ship will be even a bit louder! As far as the ECU they just attached a de-limiter box on there which aso raised the rpm limit to 8500. It willl cost approx 2500Euros. The wheels were 21" and the tires were pretty thin looking but held up well on the drive, got a close up pic of those too. The suspension was lowered an inch all the way round and handled very well, i.e. fim and compliant but not to harsh. The roads were pretty good where I drove it so no telling what it would be like on crap pavement. Will get more info out hopefully by tomorrow.
 

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:D Wow that must have been an experience!

Also to both of you Aussies: thanks for a great report! :M5rev: It is oon the frontpage of m5board.com.


storageking said:
I thought I heard someone in the back (on our hot lap) of the car say "do we really need to going this fast"? ( I mean nervous - big time) when travelling down the straight - well upon review that is exactly what was said - and I can tell you, that guy was only speaking his mind. It was a bit like that really - on the hot lap all hell broke loose.
 

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Gustav said:
:D Wow that must have been an experience!

Also to both of you Aussies: thanks for a great report! :M5rev: It is oon the frontpage of m5board.com.
Cheers Gustav,

Your website has been my soul mate since ordering the car back in June, 2003.

It has provided me with a constant source of information. I must thank you and all the members.

In fact, BMW Australia are continually astounded by the knowledge base that we have - I have been keeping them on their toes, believe me! - especially with the recent delays, having the truth before BMW even call me means they know now not to put any bulls*&t in the conversation......

I have couriered the DVD I made to Dallas in Brisbane and I might ask him to edit out the "do we really need to be going this fast" segment and generate a .wav file so you could put it with the front page quote - that would be hilarious!

Anyway, back to the grindstone,

Cheers,

Dave
 

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That sepang bronze M5 looks like it's the Aus press car too...

Image uploading. Refresh page to view


But they've taken the number plate holder off between the wheels test and the drive day.. looks much better without... but perhaps with euro plates.... hmmm
 

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Kirium said:
That sepang bronze M5 looks like it's the Aus press car too...

Image uploading. Refresh page to view


But they've taken the number plate holder off between the wheels test and the drive day.. looks much better without... but perhaps with euro plates.... hmmm
I noticed the ugly number plate holder on the cover of Wheels and thought the car shouldn't have been let out for a photo shoot looking so bad!
 

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Thanks for the write up guys. I hope to place my order next year. (I want to keep my E39, I think it's going to be a collectable especially in Australia, similar to the Ford GT's and Holden Monaro's of the 70's). Is there anybody else out there thinking along the same lines?

Tell me was the track wet? I know it rained yesterday(Monday) and today(Tuesday). If so, how did the M5 go in the wet (especially doing 230 down the main straight, turn 1 would have been an experience).

I drive past Eastern Creek everyday and all weekend and Monday I was thinking of you blokes out there having a ball.

All the best and good luck.
Norm.
 

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Dave sent me the video, but its hard to post. I will be going for a spin on Friday next.

I will shoot some vidoe with my 3CCD camera

Dallas
 
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