Hey all, BMWDave here. I literally haven't created a new post in the E60 M5 section for almost a year now ever since I sold my old E60 M5 in order to get the new F10 M5. I thought that I would take a moment to share a few thoughts with the E60 M5 community, which I do miss quite a bit and feel like it is still one of the best communities out there in the BMW world. Ever since I got the F10 M5 the majority of my forum posting has migrated over to Bimmerpost because they seem to always have the latest and greatest information on the F10 M5. I still post on the M5Board F10 M5 section but it's just not the same without Gustav. But that's another discussion.
I digress, having owned my F10 M5 now for a few months and doing European Delivery with it in Europe I will openly say that without doubt I do miss my E60 M5. I am posting this even after I have explored the F10 M5 greatly in its ability and performance over these past few months. You can read my review and watch my movies and videos in the links in my signature to get a sense of my adventures so far with the F10.
There are 3 main areas that I miss about the E60 M5 which stand out the most from the F10 M5.
- V10 Sound with aftermarket exhaust
- Smaller size of the E60
- Lighter weight of the E60
Other little things:
- Adjustable Side Bolsters
- Active Side Bolsters
- Styling cues of the E60 (like the headlights)
The first one, I knew immediately I would miss it the day that I dismantled my RPi Headers and RPi GT Exhaust from the E60 M5, however there is no doubt in my mind that the stock exhaust on the F10 M5 sounds way
better than the stock exhaust on the E60 M5. It's the aftermarket exhausts on the E60 M5 that really does it for me, there is no better mod for any other car in the world in my opinion. The other two didn't hit me until after I got my F10 M5 back from Euro Delivery and started to drive it on a daily basis and push it on canyon roads. Both inside and outside of the F10 M5, I do feel like it's just over the line of the size of car that is too big for me. Sometimes I feel like I'm walking up to a 7-Series, and other times I feel like I'm driving a 7-Series especially when trying to park in a parking lot. Even the size of the door handles on the F10 seems too big for my hand.
I guess part of the problem is that I'm still a single dude with no wife and no kids, and I don't need the extra room that the F10 offers over the E60. It's kind of like the Goldilocks pouridge paradox, the E90 M3 is too small for me, the F10 M5 is too big for me, and the E60 M5 is juuuuuuust right! Lol! I will say because of the greater and greater sizes of new BMW's nowadays, I am highly interested to see what comes of the 2016 (F84) M4 Gran Coupe. That car should be just a smidge smaller than an E60 chassis. The F30 chassis size is already pretty close to an E60.
Stock for stock the F10 M5's suspension set up is superior. It definitely has less body roll with EDC on sport+ than the E60 M5's on sport+. However, with springs and swaybars I will say that the E60 M5's handling is damn good compared to a stock F10 M5. I will be getting some springs put on the F10 and will be able to offer more of a comparison soon. I just remember how good a modified suspension on an E60 M5 handled, although by doing so it was definitely pretty bad for daily driving, too stiff. As for the weight, I feel like you can feel the E60 M5's weight more when pushing the car's handling ability to the limit, because the chassis engineering is inferior to the F10's. I remember several times being able to really feel the full weight of the E60 through the steering wheel when coming into a turn at a fast speed. On the F10 the chassis design and engineering feels light years ahead in that it does such an incredible job of hiding the weight of the F10 M5's ~4,300 lbs. You really become aware of the F10's weight only when making it do things a 4,300lbs car shouldn't be able to do. The weight of the F10 is noticable though, and in the end I'd rather have a lighter car, but the F10 M5 chassis engineering still baffles me and always will.
A good example of this was a couple of weekends ago when I was doing something foolish with the F10 M5 trying to push it to its limits to see what it could do. It was a rainy night here in San Diego and I was cruising on the highway. I had to get off one highway and merge onto another, but the merge was a piece of road I was highly familiar with and have taken that turn at 130+ speeds many times before. This time it was raining though (which it almost never rains in San Diego) and the roads were a little slick. Feeling adventurous, I pushed the F10's speed up to around 130 getting ready to enter the merge (no cars around me by the way). Well it was entirely way to fast for the wet pavement and the M5 lost control. The DSC was fully ON thank god, and I tapped the brakes a little and then let off, the M5 rear tires broke traction, but the car recovered quickly and with such finesse I almost couldn't believe that I didn't lose complete control and crash. The chassis felt so stable and my steering never felt out of control. It's very hard to describe. I just felt so incredibly in control even though I realized that the M5 was out of control. If I was in the E60 M5, I think it would have been a different story.
I will say the things that I definitely do not miss from the E60 M5 are the small fuel tank, terrible gas mileage, and uncertain reliability. The range of the F10 M5 is heavenly. I can easily get a minimum of 425 miles on a single tank of gas and so far I have gotten as much as 465 miles. The highest mpg I've seen on the highway is about 26-27mpg in the F10. As many of you know we had a meet and canyon run in honor of "Sir" ACG last weekend. In a single day of running with about 20 E60 M5's, 5 E39 M5's, and 3 F10 M5's, 2 of the E60 M5's broke down, and one got a flat tire. Sounded like one had a vanos issue and another had an SMG issue. Seeing those E60's break down gave me a good feeling that I don't have to worry about that anymore. The prospect of the E60 M5 about to break always gave me stress. I've been quite lucky so far with my F10 M5 though, I have almost 4,000 miles on it and not a single problem, and my car was one of the ones affected by the oil pump recall. She performed marvelously on the Nurburgring by the way.
The most important point though is the missing sound from the S85 V10 engine with an aftermarket exhaust. I already have a Full RPi GT exhaust on my F10 M5 and although it does sound better, there's still just no comparison. One of the things that I miss most from the E60 is that first start up of the engine. I always felt like I was starting up a race car when ever I cranked up the V10. The entire car would shake and vibrate at idle. I LOVED that. I always felt like something special was going to happen every time I left my garage. In the F10 M5 with an RPi exhaust, the cold start sounds really good, but it lacks that F1 race car feeling. The E60's V10 is like dating that hot girl who takes you for granted, makes you buy her stuff all the time, the sex is mindblowing and she screams too loud during the act , mother never approved of her, and she got too drunk at your wedding and made out with the best man. The F10's S63tu's V8 is more like dating that girl next door that everyone in the neighborhood thinks is a nice girl, she goes to church, but has a secret life as a stipper, and is a freak in bed and will do things to you that you never thought were possible. Lol! Sorry if there are any ladies in the audience.
The E60 M5 may not be the fastest car because of turbo techonology in today's new cars, but it sure is one of the most fun cars I have ever driven, if not the most fun, and I miss that despite the bad gas mileage and poor reliability. Last night I took a girl on a date and I was driving her home in the F10 and she wanted me to push it a little. So one thing that I like to do with all of the torque from the S63tu is slowly and gradually depress the throttle all the way to full throttle, letting the torque build and build until it feels insane. It seems like the torque and the force you get is almost never ending and so powerful with this engine. The girl I was on a date with, said "whew, I didn't expect that," and I LOL'd.
I think ownership of an M5 is about the feeling you get when you drive it and look at it. Let me put it this way, I LOVED my E60 M5 with all of the mods even though it wasn't the fastest thing out there, but still plenty fast. Where as my love for the F10 M5 is still growing on me and to be honest isn't anywhere close to the LOVE I had for the E60 M5 yet. The things that I love the most about the F10 M5 are the torque, the DCT (although I loved the SMG and think it will always be the more exciting transmission), the Bang & Olufsen sound system, the new iDrive system, and the reliability so far. I almost feel like my LOVE for the V10 engine trumps all of these things from the F10 M5, almost.
So in conclusion, my honest feeling is that F10 M5 isn't the better car, it's just different, even though it does many many things better than the E60 M5. I don't feel like the E60 M5 is an inferior car at all because the F10 is here now. Truth be told, I want my E60 M5 back, but I still want to keep my F10 as well. Lol! So I have decided to start saving my pennies because one day I am going to re-aquire an E60 M5 and rebuild it into an RPi Stage 2 or even Stage 3 with a Supercharger. I'll probably opt for a 6spd manual E60 M5 next time around though, in order to avoid any SMG problems.
I am telling you that if you own an E60 M5 today, then hold on to it, take care of it, and love it. There aren't many cars out there with a V10 anymore and I can't see any other new cars being built in the future with naturally aspirated V10's. Well, besides the new Dodge Viper and the continuing production of the Lamborghini Gallardo. I also see that the prices of E60 M5's have dropped considerably this year. I personally think that these cars are under valued due to their exlusivity by having a V10, but at the same time I understand their devaluation due to the reliability, high maintenance issues, as well as the F10's being on showroom floors now. In any case, as an F10 M5 owner I am still jealous of anyone that own's an E60 M5 today and in the future, and one day I will be back.
Also here's some pics for your enjoyment. Some of my favorite picture of the E60 M5 as well as some shots of my F10 and some other random shots that I like.