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BMW 5-Series Wagon 2004 Redesign

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  • How about:

    1970 Plymouth Barracuda/Dodge Challanger - I drooled the first time I saw one and still do today

    Aston DB7 - not mass produced but still too stunning to be left out

    E39 - not playing favorites but I really think that it will still turn heads in 20yrs
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Man, need lots of hours to get into the above two posts. Riez, you’re a car man--no doubt. Thinkin’ back to my college years when the school parking lot was a Concours event with those 60s cars.

    My first car was a red 65 Impala SS with... get this... 3-speed manual on the column. Eventually had it converted to a Hearst on the floor. Loved it. However, I had somewhat of an inferiority complex since it only had the 283... wanted that 396. Has anything changed? Nah. Here I am with 530 in hand... 911 and M5 on the brain. That’s gonna happen soon enough. Figuring how it will fit into the family situation.

    Onto to the Karmikan post. When we talk exotics, that’s where the near-perfect scores lie in style design. Wish the rank-and-file car designers would study them more. That Aston is up there Karmikan... REAL tight design. Before I croak I have to do a one- or two-year stint with either an Aston or Lamborghini. Will deal with the disparity in style when I get there. Conventional vs Radical. At the moment... leaning towards the bull... the 04 Gallardo slays me. I have a small problem with the wheels but think I can handle it. Curious how this came out under Audi tutelage. Considering Audi styling directions also, I would have to guess that some decision maker at Audi has his act together. BMW take note please... I'm beggin' you.
  • The E60 was on Test Drive on Speed last night. The major impression it gave me was "ordinary". It seems devoid of that intangible presence on the road and lacks that mildly aggressive/purposeful look from a 3/4 front view that is a hallmark of the E39 and (say) the A4/6.

    Driving dynamics were said to be greatly improved over the E39 but as Test Drive is a sponsored show it's hard to see them saying otherwise.
  • Saw one in the flesh on connection at Oslo/Norway airport. The E60 530i was on display inside the departure lounge. Doors were locked but I did spent a few minutes 'evaluating' the exterior from various angles.

    First off: it looks better in person, really. It has the same visual impacts on me as when I first saw the E39/1997 model and back then I was driving a 1990 535i - progressively different but a step forward in the right direction nevertheless.

    The car looks(and is) slightly bigger than the E39. The front face hints a bit of Pontiac(arggh!) but taken as a whole, it's unmistakenly BMW and an evolution of the E39.

    The back is much much better done than the 7. No hunchback, just a well-integrated trunk lid with the trunk itself. In fact, it reminds me of my E39 more so than the front. The tailights are angled just a tiny bit but not enough to be offensive. The cut-out for the tailpipe was the only complaint I have (as did the Autombile mag).

    The car looks good from every angle. The concave/convex of the hood/door panels were very very subtle and definitely less so than the Z4. But against good (spot)lighting, you can make out the crossover. I like them though.

    Since the doors were locked, I could only peeked inside. The car had black leather interior and was an AT. The interior material used looks rich (as always).

    All told, I don't have an issue with the exterior so what remains is a test drive and a feel of the interior...
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Thats pretty much the impression I had of the car after seeing it on Motorweek last Monday, and again last night during the many ads being run on the car during the Bears game. I guess the dealers will have some in stock in a couple of weeks so I can take an actual "look" at the car, it appears so far to look much better than the 7-Series.

    M
  • I think you will like the E60 even more once you see it in person.

    Like the Z4, my reservations for the Z4/E60 were gone the minute I saw them.

    But unlike the MB E series which is medium-size C with S being the large-size, the 5 series is out there on its own, holding its own in its class. The reason I bringing MB in is I see from your profile you're a big MB fan. I was a MB fan too and was cross-shopping BMW/MB until 1996 when the C/E/S all seems to be deflated/inflated copy of each other. Even more so today. But today, the BMW 3/5(E60)/7 are each visually different and IMO better designed.

    Next year, I might be in the market to replace my E39 and the E60 wins me over once again (over a MB E500/320) like it did in 1997. Looks like I'll never end up with an E.

    Edit: This post is just a casual friendly conversation and in no way meant to ding MB or create a BMW vs MB sub-thread.
  • Hint taken. One can usually easily identify when a member is trying to pick a fight vs. just conversing :)

    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • I'm in Germany on business and my rental car is an 04 520i. This is a beautiful car and gets appreciative looks even over here where every other car is a BMW. It drives like a dream despite being low on power (which won't be the case in the states) and easily cruises above 100mph with poise. The idrive system is easy to use and the navi is user-friendly and intuitive. I would wholeheartedly recommend the 04 5 series.
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    You might be right, I'm anxiously awaiting the local dealer to put the first new 5 on the lot..can't wait to see it.

    No problem bringing up MB and BMW as I like them both. The E-Class and 5-Series are appreciated by many people for different reasons...mainly luxury for the E and sport for the 5. I see what you're saying about Mercedes' design, but BMW is doing pretty much the same thing with the 5, it being just a toned down version of the 7. I don't blame Mercedes for sticking with what works. The E-Class is still the most popular car in the class, both here and in Europe.

    M
  • Just got back from a big unveiling of the E60. Lots of fanfare, movies, booze & snacks.

    The posts from people who have previously said that the car looks better in real life were correct. The car looks sort of ok, nothing special or striking but not as ugly as in the pics I've seen. The interior is the opposite IMO, it looks way better in pics than when you actually sit in it. I wasn't impressed at all.

    The most telling thing was the reaction of other people, many of whom were not "car people" and hadn't seen the car before. The general impression was one of ambivalence. I heard "like a Buick inside" a couple of times and several "I prefer mine" comments. Lots of furrowed brows but no "goo goo eyes" reactions.

    Good stuff - big trunk, more rear seat room and real cupholders (although they're both on the passenger side of the dash!).

    If the reaction of the 400 people at this event is any indication, BMW may have a minor flop on their hands. I smell re-design in a couple of years.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That's not good, people tend to be polite at these gatherings. They're being pampered and still can't get excited...

    I went to the E class into in DC, even drove one before they were in dealers. You heard Oohs and Aahs when they took the sheets off the new sedan.

    -juice
  • I priced a 545i 6pd man with sport package on this
    sight at $58K. Pretty much the same price as the
    outgoing 540i. Then I read about Caddy's CTS-V
    at $50K (6spd and sport package std) with a
    400HP/390ft-lbs V-8. That's a pwerful car at an
    agressive price. BMW better be concerned about
    ho-hum response to the new 5 series. I think you
    can also get a CTS that's more powerful than the
    530i at a 525i price.
  • I owned a '99 528i and recently bought an '03 530i. I think that BMW should have introduced a an '04 535i from the start - say 275HP. This would have helped to justify the $3,500 price increase and made it a better value. I was able to recently buy an '03 530i for under $40K. Same optioned '04 is nearly $51K! Short term good deal for sure - but consider that the '04 with all the options can go up to $58K. YIKES! This could cause an erosion in BMWs market share in the U.S.
  • I like the new style! The old style looked like any other car;Honda etc. The best part about the new 04's is that it is larger inside! There was little if any difference in the interior size of the 325 and 525 03's!
  • I agree with breynolds2. The '04 5 series is larger and much more stylish than previous years. I had scratched BMW off my list because I hated the look of the 5 Series in 'O3. It just didn't look like an expensive car. Many less expensive cars had better lines and styling. Now I can go back and see how it stacks up to the Lexus 330 I am considering. I have one Lexus that I love, but I'd really like to give that good old German engineering a try for my second car.
  • I drove the e60 today during lunch and think it's a good package. Pro's= "active steering", interior & trunk space. Con's= exterior wheel style ,some interior ergonomics (empty space beneath radio, backseat exposed armrest release). In the "not sure" category, body side seems a bit bulky,in Mystic Blue anyway Silver looked better, headlight wrap better than photos,and this could be signature of this car. Overall, I was pleased with this product. I have a '03 530,and if I trade in after a couple of years, this stays on the list, particularly with new engine choices. Did not drive Premium Pkg, so no comments on it.
  • First batch of E60 530's arrived in Houston today and I was the first in town to test drive! Car was Mystic Blue with beige interior. Let's just say that this car looks absolutely incredible! The front end is aggressive, back end very stylish. I currently own a 330, and it did take a few moments to figure out all the new stuff inside. Noticeably larger interior room and the new dash concept is pleasing to the eye. The car drove like a true ultimate driving machine. Quickly accelerated to 85 and felt like 40! Active Steering is truly noticeable especially in the parking lot. I have one on order due to arrive in November and can't wait. If anybody else test drives, please let me know what you think of your experience! If you don't like this sport sedan, you're in trouble - I'm not sure there's any better, except the 545. P.S. My order is for Titanium Silver and Black Leather interior with both Premium and Sport packages.
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    What are the MSRPs on the new '04 E60s you are driving? Are they pretty loaded?
  • designmandesignman Posts: 2,129
    Riez, do a build on the BMW website. Dealer I went to quoted retail. The difference in what I paid for my E39 in June vs. same for E60 is a whopping $12K. Are they loaded? Yeah with frivolous features. Active steering and adaptive headights with the sports package turned me off and accounts for the SP price increase. They had a new silver M5 and several M3s. Thinkin' about an M3 w/SMG... have a year to mull it over before 3 series goes south. If M5 had it, that would have been my car in June. Since M5 w/SMG wont be out til 05, maybe they'll make styling revisions that are more tolerable.
  • i own a 2001 m5 and owned 2 other e39's (540 6 speeds) so am pretty familiar with the e39. most of what i'm hearing here and on the bmw boards is a pretty mixed review so far.

    1. exterior styling--some love it, some hate it, nothing new here but not a universal positive response. also not many good comments on any of the wheels available.
    2. interior styling--more negative than positive, especially about the seemingly lower quality of materials. also lots and lots of complaints about the lack of availability of certain features like nav right now which changes the way the center screen looks evidently.
    3. handling--without the sport package good but nothing special. very, very positive with sport package. evidently they've hit a home run with the new steering.
    4. performance--ok, but below par relative to the competition, especially with automatic. also relative to price.
    5. pricing--i still think this could be a problem for bmw. i know there's more technology in the car and the euro is very weak but guys are certainly questioning the value proposition on the car at the new prices. understand these are primarily people who own an e39 and to see the price of the car jump $6k or so (comparably equipped) is a tough comparison.

    i can't wait to see it, will stay away from having a firm view until then...got a call from the service manager at my dealer in the bay area that they have the blue sport sitting out front...personally i think people will be a bit more positive as more and more get to see/drive it. pricing issue will not go away in my view...
This discussion has been closed.