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      03-31-2013, 06:05 AM   #1
F10N47
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Drives: BMW F10 520D M Sport
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: UK

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Hi from a first time BMW owner

Hello, I donít actually have my car yet but itís on its way Ö spec is as follows:


Z506 F10 520d M Sport Saloon N47 2.0d
300 Alpine White
LCCX Oyter/Black Dakota Leather

2MB Media package Ė BMW Business Advanced
606 Navigation system Ė BMW Business Advanced
612 BMW Assist
616 BMW Assist online portal
6NL Enhanced Bluetooth functionality incl. BMW Assist with USB audio
2ND 19Ē M Double-spoke style 351M alloy wheels
2TB Sport automatic transmission
320 Model designation deletion
3AG Reversing Assist camera
3AP Windscreen with grey shade band
430 Ext. mirrors Ė folding, auto dimming
465 Split-folding rear seats
481 Sports seats, front
4CE Fineline Anthracite wood
4UR Ambient lighting
575 12V power sockets
704 M Sport suspension
710 M Steering wheel
715 M aerodynamic bodystyling
760 Exterior trim, High-gloss Shadowline
775 Headlining, Anthracite

I placed my order on 11th March with Specialist Cars at Stevenage, Hertfordshire and they anticipate delivery in mid-late April. This is far better than Audi as an A5 built to order would have taken over 5 months to arrive. The service Iíve received from Specialist Cars has, to date, been exemplary.

Before purchasing I drove a couple of F10s over a varied test route of about 20 miles which took in broken surfaces, town roads, dual-carriageways, etc. Having read so many adverse reviews and reports regarding the combination of run-flat tyres and M Sport suspension I was surprised at just how supple the ride was. The first car I drove was an M Sport (9,000 miles old) on 19Ē wheels, followed by an SE (3,000 miles old) on optional 18s and standard suspension. Both were 520D autos. Initial impression of the M Sport was how well controlled the ride was. Potholes and road undulations were dealt with quickly and effectively with no evidence of tramlining at all. The ride was firm rather than harsh, and certainly a lot more comfortable than my own car (2009 Honda Accord). I expected the SE to be even softer riding but was surprised to find very little difference in firmness between it and the M Sport. The SE tended to wallow when changing direction and the suspension seemed to be incapable of controlling the large wheels/tyres (245 fronts, 275 rears) over broken surfaces. I suspect the 17s would perform better on standard suspension due to the reduced unsprung weight. All in all, the M Sport was far more comfortable than the SE and felt much more stable on the road.

I had planned on ordering the optional VDC or deleting the M Sport suspension but found no need for either. I guess itís all down to personal opinion but I found the M Sport suspension and 19Ē run-flats to be a more effective set-up than either the Mercedes E Class Coupe or the Audi A5 S Line which Iíd recently test driven. The 8 speed auto was also a revelation after the Audi Multitronic affair and even the 7 speed Mercedes offering wasnít as crisp changing as the BMW transmission.

I opted for the reversing camera as, combined with the mirrors which drop to show the kerb when reversing, it has proven really useful in the Accord. Iím still a bit wary of the light coloured interior but it makes such a difference to the ambience that I decided to take a chance on practicality. The Ambient Lighting package seems a bargain at £220 and, although I initially had reservations regarding the chrome inserts in the exterior handles, Iíve seen a few white 5s since and they donít look too bad.

Iím really looking forward to BMW ownership and I hope the reliability proves equal to my previous Hondas.