1995 BMW 540i Sport

By the early 1990s, even though the S38 was an incredible engine there was no denying that it was from another era. BMW’s new lineup of V8s – all-aluminum, quad-cam units were cheaper and easier to build, run and nearly as powerful – especially so in everyday use. As a result, BMW phased the S38 M5 out of production for the North American market. Yet there were still cadres of M-devotees who wanted to fly the 5-series flag here. The result was two special models for Canada and the U.S..

The more rare of the two was the Canadian market M540i. For all intents and purposes, it was a European-specification M5 without the inline-6 – they even moved production of them from Dingolfing to M’s home base of Garching. In total, they built 32 of them – making them one of the least-frequently seen M products out there. It’s no surprise that it’s been quite a while since we last saw one for sale.

The U.S. market got a slightly de-tuned version of the M540i. Known as the 540i M-Sport, unlike the M540i it was available as either a manual or automatic and didn’t carry quite as much M-content as the Canadian car. But you did get M5 looks, M5 suspension and M5 wheels – in this case, the M-system II “Throwing Stars” found on later U.S. production cars opposed to the M-Parallels found on the M540i. They were also not finished at Garching, but alongside normal E34 production. A reported total of 205 were produced for the U.S. market and we last saw one about a year ago.

So when today’s car popped into my recent searches, I was immediately pretty excited as it appeared at first glance to be one of the elusive examples of the M-Sport. And it was certainly priced like one, as asks are usually in M5-territory.…

Double Take: 1991 and 1992 BMW M5s

There’s been an avid ongoing discussion of E28 values in the 1988 535i Dinan 3.9 post from Tuesday; partially, it centered around the comparison of that car to M5 values. And, like all other M products, values – or at least, perceived values – of M5s are all over the map. We’ve seen asking prices from $10,000 right through $100,000 on E28s, and much of the same carries over to the E28’s replacement, the E34. For most fans, the second generation M5 wasn’t quite the definitive super sedan that the original was, nor is it as desirable as the 400 horsepower V8 model that followed. But that doesn’t stop some from asking high prices for the their examples, and today we’ve got two to that are very similar with different asking prices to consider; which is on target?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 BMW M5 on eBay