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      03-09-2011, 10:50 AM   #1
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Cool EVO: 4 Generations of BMW M5 Reviewed on the Ring

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EVO: 4 Generations of BMW M5 Reviewed on the Ring
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EVO reviews 25 years of the M5. This great read covers the E28, E34, E39, E60 M5 generations after back to back drives on the famed Nurburgring.

We can't wait to see what they have to say about the F10 M5, a concept version of which is scheduled to be unveiled next month.

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Five Star - 25 years of the BMW M5
Consistently the best fast saloon, the BMW M5 is now 25. David Vivian drives all four generations


Maybe it’s apt that the BMW M5 slipped into the world through a side door. Visitors to the 1984 Amsterdam motor show who failed to notice its debut were only experiencing what scores of drivers would subsequently find out on the road. The first European production saloon with supercar-rivalling performance dressed down for the job.

True, BMW had dropped enough hints that something special was coalescing in the wings. When the Motorsport division’s first road car – the brilliant, Giugiaro-styled, mid-engined M1 – ended production in 1980, there was never much doubt its extraordinary 277bhp straight-six would live on. The most obvious recipient was the 6-series coupe. BMW Motorsport’s CEO Jochen Neerspasch reckoned the combination would give Porsche’s 911 Carrera a hard time. And with a further developed version of the M1 engine delivering 286bhp, the 1983 M635 CSi did just that, easily eclipsing the 231bhp 911’s straight-line pace.

Meanwhile, the E28 5-series had a brush with the ‘M’ badge as the M535i, basically a 535i with fancy wheels and modest spoilers. ‘M’ in this case stood for ‘M-Technik’ – engine and power were unaltered – but it did create a hunger for a 5-series that could do real damage…

That the most potent car on BMW’s ’84 Amsterdam show stand was also the stealthiest may have seemed odd at the time. The eagle-eyed cognoscenti knew what the M5 was. They clocked the special lattice-pattern alloy wheels, the front splitter and the discreet ‘M’ badges. But without the usual ballyhoo or much of a discernible marketing campaign, the M5 went largely unnoticed by the masses. And that’s the way BMW wanted it to begin with. It was a low-volume specialist project hand-built at the Motorsport facility, away from the BMW production lines.

But then not recognising the M5 for what it was quickly became part of the mystique. Essentially it was a Q-car, an ordinary-looking executive saloon powered by an extraordinary, race-derived engine. As the first true supersaloon, it sparked a power struggle that has lasted a quarter of a century and seen four generations take the fight to the opposition it created. Next year, the most powerful and advanced M5 yet looks set to push the bar higher still. For now, though, let’s rewind to the M5’s 25th birthday bash late last year. Based at the M division’s long-established Nürburgring test centre a five-minute walk from the Ring pit lane, it provided the perfect opportunity to chart the evolution of a modern motoring icon. Four generations of M5 are lined up in the pale autumnal sun. The Green Hell beckons. Continued at EVO online...

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      03-09-2011, 11:44 AM   #2
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Awesome read!
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      03-09-2011, 11:55 AM   #3
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Thanks. Nice article.
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      03-09-2011, 12:06 PM   #4
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Cool article
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      03-09-2011, 12:10 PM   #5
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Looking forward to reading, thanks!
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      03-09-2011, 12:21 PM   #6
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I'd take the E39 M5 anyday!
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      03-09-2011, 01:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by checkmate View Post
I'd take the E39 M5 anyday!
It is the best one Especially in Carbon Black with Caramel interior.
Not biased at all.....
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      03-09-2011, 01:25 PM   #8
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The E39 M5 is the very first BMW I ever drove. I was 18. I'm a BMW fanatic because of this car. Thank you ///M
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      03-09-2011, 01:33 PM   #9
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I fell in love with the E39 M5 after watching the BMW Films Star mini episode featuring the E39 M5 and Madonna getting whipped around by Clive Owen. He drove it like a lunatic and it was epic!
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      03-09-2011, 02:08 PM   #10
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Nice read. Reminds me of why I'm such a BMW fanboy.
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      03-09-2011, 04:05 PM   #11
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E34 M4 for me. Still appeals to me.
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      03-09-2011, 07:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppin Fresh View Post
I fell in love with the E39 M5 after watching the BMW Films Star mini episode featuring the E39 M5 and Madonna getting whipped around by Clive Owen. He drove it like a lunatic and it was epic!
I LOVED that video!
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      03-10-2011, 01:20 AM   #13
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E39 ///M5 is possibly one of the greatest cars ever built... And this is coming from an E60 owner. I absolutely adore the E39 ///M5
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      03-10-2011, 01:34 AM   #14
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      03-10-2011, 11:30 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWPower06 View Post
E39 ///M5 is possibly one of the greatest cars ever built... And this is coming from an E60 owner. I absolutely adore the E39 ///M5
Agreed. I'd love to have one in my garage.
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