1999 BMW 540i Touring 6-speed

Back to wagons!

Today’s example is another fan-favorite model, of which it seems surprisingly hard to find a great example. The E39 continued and expanded the 5-series wagon’s popularity by bringing bigger wheels, more power and updated looks to the mid-range Audi-challenger. Like the first generation, these were only available in rear-wheel drive in the U.S., so matching the all-wheel drive variants available from…well, everyone else, required a very good looking and potent package. BMW pulled that off, with the Sport versions of both the 528i and 540i Tourings thoroughly encapsulating the ethos of the great Euro wagons.

But there was a catch.

If you wanted a manual gearbox, you had to select the lower output 528i model. For all its shouty V8-ness, the 282 horsepower 4.4 liter M62-equipped 540i only came with BMW’s Steptronic if you needed to haul ass and a family. Of course, that hasn’t stopped a few enterprising individuals from combining the manual from the sedan with the more desirable wagon:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1999 BMW 540i Touring 6-speed on eBay


Year: 1999
Model: 540i Touring
Engine: 4.4 liter V8
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Mileage: 108,400 mi
Price: No Reserve Auction

THE OVERVIEW
Offered for an appreciating new owner at NO RESERVE is this 1999 BMW 540i touring wagon with CUSTOM 6 SPEED MANUAL TRANSMISSION!
Finished in Oxford green metallic over black leather, this 99.99% rust-free always California wagon has been driven just over 108.400 miles since purchased new here at San Francisco BMW nearly 20 years ago for a list price of $60,760! It sports a great running 4.4 liter V8 engine [making 282 horsepower and 325 pounds of torque] mated to a freshly-installed 6 speed manual transmission with short shift kit by UUC [from a donor 2000 540i]. This cool family hauler AND autobahn cruiser features FACTORY SPORT PACKAGE, electric windows, electric sunroof, roof rack, cold a/c, electric leather seats, rare factory slide out hatch tray, xenon lights, factory stereo, electric tilt and telescoping M Sport steering wheel, 18″ E39 M5 wheel with good rubber, airbags, traction control, park distance control and lots more! This almost-M5 wagon is being sold with two factory keys, clean and clear California title in my name, accident-free Carfax report showing MANY service records and current 2018 registration,

EXTRA PARTS AND OTHER CARS:
I also have a nice set of charcoal grey interior trim pieces, alternate wheel and tire selections and a pair of grey sport seats from the donor 540i 6 speed car. These parts can be discussed as a separate cost. I ALSO have a few other E39s ……a few of which are shown in the teaser photos….. 2000 BMW 540i automatic, 2003 BMW 530i Sport automatic and a black on black NON-running 2000 540 donor/parts car and a wrecked but RUNNING 2000 M5. Package deal on two or more?

THE BODY AND TRIM
The exterior of this 1999 540it is in good but far from showroom new condition overall with it’s share of nicks and scratches especially on the rear bumper. The left front headlight has a bit of moisture inside the lense and ther front bumper cover is slightly unattached at the corner. I would call it a nice “ten-footer” with original paint finish that still sports a deep overall shine and a great stance with the staggered size M5 wheels.

THE INTERIOR
As I hope is articulated in the photos, the interior of this non-smoker 1999 BMW is in good to very good original condition overall with cold air conditioning, all lights and gauges working as they should [AND….no weird lights from the conversion], While there are a few imperfections and light wear as one might expect of an 19 year-old vehicle, this is still one very handsome, roomy and comfortable German cockpit!

THE DRIVING EXPERIENCE
This 540 wagon starts easily with excellent running engine, crisp shifting manual transmission, nice clutch pedal feel, solid and secure braking, tight steering and fairly solid suspension and balanced handling. Items that would make a closer to perfect driving experience include slightly stiff rear hydraulic shocks, choppy front tire tread. Otherwise this is still one cool tourer especially when manually rowing through the gears!

THE DETAILS AND $$$$
1. This 1999 BMW is being sold with clear and clean California title in my name, current 2018 registration and just passed stringent California smog testing. It will be sold “AS IS” “WHERE IS” with no written or verbal warranties expressed or implied. I invite and very much welcome prospective new owners to come see, feel, drive and inspect this car in person.
NOTE: There will be no post-sale inspections to determine whether you actually want to purchase this car. So, PLEASE bid thoughtfully
2. Zero feedback bidders please contact me prior to bidding or bids will be cancelled immediately. This car is also being advertised in other venues and I reserve the right to end auction at any time at my discretion.
3. I will assist with shipping arrangements [buyer pays costs]. I recommend Chris at Kelly’s Auto Transport at 951-845-6224
4. Winning bidder please call 650-350-8828 and/or email me thru ebay within 24 hours of auction close.
5. A $500 non-refundable down payment via Paypal w/in 2 days of auction close.
6. Balance of purchase due via CASH in person, bank wire transfer or certified funds within 5 days of auction close thank you.

AND…..,,,,.PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE TO PHONE ME, EVAN AT 650-350-8828 TO REQUEST ADDITIONAL PHOTOS, TEST DRIVE VIDEO OR TO SCHEDULE IN-PERSON VIEWINGS AND/OR MECHANICAL INSPECTIONS.

Produced in Dingolfing in March 1999, this Oxford Green Metallic (324) over black leather (N6SW) carries the single-VANOS M62TU under the hood. Options were 220 and 227 self-leveling Sport suspension, 339 Shadowline trim, 363 Style 32 17″ wheels, 386 roof rails, 403 electric glass sunroof, 412 extendable load floor, 413 luggage net, 417 rear side sun blinds, 459 electric seats, 508 park distance control, 522 Xenon lights, 640 telephone prep, 677 and 694 Hifi with CD prep, and 710 M leather steering wheel. The 6-speed transmission swap is a great change, and the seller also notes that they have a set of the more desirable Sport package seats available. The other addition was the Style 65 Shadowline M5 wheels, 18×8 in front and 18×9 in the rear. They certainly give the 540i presence.

Mileage is reasonable, condition appears to be good, and the rest…well, to a lot of people, the rest doesn’t really matter. The heavy-lift of the 6-speed swap complete, I’d wager most enthusiasts can reason their way beyond the condition issues and the lack of disclosed maintenance. As a bonus, the seller has listed the car as a no reserve auction, and with a day and half to go the bids are just past $8,000. Where will it end? I wouldn’t be surprised to see this car settle between $11,000 and $12,000; money that will get you into a S4 Avant with some looking but probably not in this condition.

-Carter

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