Interesting specification as you say. Petrol is a peach, after trying a 535i saloon, was my engine of choice. So sweet and refined compared to the 530d diesel, really suits the car.
I can see the attraction of the manual box to really exploit the engine, but I'm happy with the paddles when I want a bit of fun.
I'm running 18" wheels on mine and they do work well along with AD. I've tried them on a 530d saloon with standard suspension and didn't find they were as good as they are with AD, on any of the settings. Will be interesting to see what you find.
Longish wait, but sure it will be worth it.