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mikem said:

I have been lurking here for a while now and I am ready to take the plunge into BMW with a new M5.

What would it be worth driving? I currently have a Caddy CTS-V.

Should I drive an M3 to get the feel for SMG? What about a 5 series to get the feel for the size of the M5?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you,
First, I'm not sure anything will give you a similar driving experience to the E60 M5. It would certainly be worth driving an E60 5 series and an SMG M3 to get a feel for a number of the features though.

I've been on the M5 list for several years, expecting delivery next month. I actually bought a 545i 6sp over a year ago, in part so I could get used to driving a similar car. I've made it a point to test drive a number of M3's with SMG transmission also. If the M5 transmission is similar to the M3, then I'll probably sell it and get a manual. If it's considerably better, as most people say, then I may keep it.

Honestly I can say it took me a good 3-6 months to really get comfortable with all the features in the 545. It is an incredibly complex car, and the features are very similar to the E60 M5. I would guess the handling is quite different. In my opinion, the more experience you can get with both an E60 5 series, and the SMG M3 the quicker you'll get acclimated to the M5.
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