2002 BMW E39 M5, 72k miles, $17,500

Carrying on with this week’s focus on E39 M5s, here is an example that could fall into the cheap buy category. We are all familiar with this car and its stonking performance, so on with the details…

2002 BMW M5 on Craigslist Philadelphia

The seller has this to say:

Silver 2002 BMW M5 with Black Leather Interior -72Kmiles

I am sacraficing my 2002 BMW M5. This beast has a V8 400h engine, 6 speed transmission. The M5 has all the standard options including Xenon headlights, M5 Sports Suspension, dynamic stability control, power sunroof, heated power M5 Sports seats, 6 CD changer in the trunk etc, etc. The Titanium Silver body is clean. There are some roadchips near the grill and a couple scratches on the bumpers. The 18 inch performance tires and rims have alot of life left in them.

The black leather interior with suede lining has been a non smoking auto with minimal wear. I put in a new OEM clutch and rear brakes about 6K ago. Clean Title. Well maintained. Maintenance records available. Disclosure: the Navigation cd-rom drive needs to be repaired, but all other computer functions work properly. This a great deal for an amazing car.

The one thing I would like to know more about is why this car needed a new clutch at 66,000 miles. Also, it is quite odd that the rear brakes, not the fronts, were the ones replaced. An uncle of mine, who owned many BMWs as well as some M models, always said he was hesitant about buying used M cars, as they are often driven hard and put up wet. A clutch replacement at 66k is making me lean towards this assumption. Another thing to be careful of is cars in the Philadelphia/NYC/Boston corridor often lead hard lives.

Depending on how well this example drives and the extent of the maintenance records, this could be a good deal. Retail values of clean M5’s in this mileage range seems to be runnin in the low to mid $20k range on average these days.

-Paul

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One Comment

  1. Don sent me an email with the following information:

    That’s not surprising at all. The clutch is a real weak point on
    this car – it’s not really up to sporty use with 400HP on tap. There
    are aftermarket clutches that are stronger.

    Having a new clutch is a GOOD THING on this car.. because if it didn’t
    have it, it’s just a matter of time before it needs it.

    A larger concern is the clogging of the bypass-air-passages in the
    head. Some of the engines coke these up, and it’s large $$$ from
    BMW to ream them out and get the SES light to stay off (and be
    able to pass emissions.)

    There is a software mod available from some unnamed sources (for
    off-road use only!) that turn it off for you. Only the US models
    have this problem since the Euro models ignore the signal from
    the O2 sensor until the engine warms up a bit.

    The rear brakes were probably done because they weren’t needed the
    last time the fronts were done, now they were. With the power/weight
    of the car, the fronts do most of the braking, and even though
    they’re bigger than the normal E39 – they do tend to wear out first.

    Depending on how well this example drives and the extent of the maintenance records, this could be a good deal. Retail values of clean M5’s in this mileage range seems to be runnin in the low to mid $20k range on average these days.

    Not a bad price. Silver/black is .. blah .. – seems like almost every
    E39 is silver/black. Some of the solid color ones with the two tone
    interior are really stunning lookers IMHO.

    For me – a dealer PPI would be mandatory, and it should only be bought
    if the service records are complete. At those miles it can be expected
    to need new front lower control arms (60k mile item), and should be checked
    for a valley-pan-gasket coolant leak (all the V8’s do this sooner or later).

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