What a long strange 5 series trip it's been.
On Saturday, after three consecutive E60s, I traded in my '08 550i 6MT for a 2011 550i 6MT Sport. I came extremely close to opting for an '09 M5, but in the end, the maintenance, cost of gas/insurance, and most importantly, my boredom with the E60 platform pushed me to the F10. I am really excited about the latest acquisition and have spent the last 48 hours searching for answers here to my endless mod-centric questions.
Of course, before we can move forward, we need to take a trip down memory lane. My F10 is my eighth BMW over the last 11 years (seventh 5 series).
First, there was my 1998 528iA. She had 90K on the clock when I picked her up and she treated me well. Mods were limited to LCI Hellas, front and rear.
Next up was my 2000 540i 6MT. This was my first taste of BMW's normally aspirated V8 power and I have been hooked -- until now -- ever since. Mods included short throw shifter, M-parallels, M5 spoiler and exhaust.
House purchase forced me to sell the '00 E39 only to land a higher paying job mere weeks later. Occasionally, we make bad decisions, and this next acquisition was a REAL doozie. Ladies and Gents, the 2001 E38 740i Sport. This car was always in the shop and by the end, I wanted to launch it off a cliff, Thelma and Louise style. Good riddance.
Next came the car that to this day remains, IMHO, the finest sport sedan ever built, the 2003 540i M-Sport 6MT. I will NEVER get over selling this car. Mods included 20" Type-II ACS wheels, aluminum interior trim, CAI and exhaust. Miss you! #NeverForget
Then came the '06 E60 550i 6MT. Just an awesome car, made even better by the RPI exhaust, Style 166s and RPI scoops. Sold her when our first baby was born, largely because I discovered the car had some paint work done prior to my purchase and that made me uneasy.
To replace the 550i, I decided to take the turbo plunge and picked up this '08 535i 6MT, thinking that LCI and better gas mileage would make me happy. This car was spec-ordered and Euro delivered with the m-tech aero package and had almost every option imaginable. I added the 20" Velanos and this car never failed to get compliments where I went. Sadly, the HPFP, injector, tubro issues (even though all of the aforementioned were replaced) never really went away and I got fed up.
Luckily, I was able to trade the 535i for a lower mileage '08 550i, the car that was dealt this weekend for my F10, I know, I know, it looks identical to the 535i! In many ways, the cars were virtually identical, and if not for the HREs that I added, the HUD and ventilated seats, my wife wouldn't have known the difference, either. (Carbon and Monaco Blue are remarkably similar, btw.) Other mods included Orion V2s and RDSport exhaust. This is/was a great, great car.
Unfortunately, I do not have pics of my Cashmere/Oyster F10 yet, but rest assured, they are coming. Options include:
1153 550i USD 60,200.00
Color A72 Cashmere Silver Metallic N/C
Upholstery LCCX Oyster and Black Dakota Leather N/C
Options ZCV Convenience Package 1,700.00
316 Power tailgate N/C
322 Comfort Access keyless entry N/C
323 Soft-close automatic doors N/C
ZCW Cold Weather Package 1,050.00
ZDA Driver Assistance Package 1,750.00
ZDH Dynamic Handling Package 2,700.00
ZP2 Premium Package 2 2,400.00
ZSP Sport Package 2,200.00
465 Split fold-down-rear seat 475.00
4NB 4-zone automatic climate control 500.00
5DL Side and Top View Cameras 800.00
6NF Smartphone Integration 150.00
Total Suggested Price 74,800.00
The car has everything I want but for HUD, ventilated seats and the M-Sport body kit.
I am REALLY hopeful that some of you will have some opinions and guidance on some of my more pressing questions that I haven't been able to confirm via diligent searches of the forum:
1. The manual shift knob is an absolute joke. How BMW found it advisable to use such a junky piece of plastic in a car like this is beyond me. I am strongly leaning toward replacing with the illuminated M5 shifter, but I am wondering if: a) there is power nearby to tap into for illumination; and b) if this is truly a plug and play situation in terms of fitment. It seems like the M3 guys have modified the boot to work for them, but I doubt that would apply to us F10'ers, right? I am looking to pick up this one
2. I have the sport steering wheel, but since my car is not an M-sport, my lower trim piece doesn't have the /M logo. Can I simply replace the trim piece with a /M branded version? I see how to take the airbag out and unscrew the existing trim piece, just need confirmation it's that easy.
3. My car has illuminated door sills, which is pretty sweet, but I am wondering if an /M logo'ed version exists that plug and play? It seems like the M-sport sills were branded but NOT illuminated?
4. I have contacted Gary Lo at Suvneer about a rep M-sport body kit and it seems like a fantastic deal. I would love to hear about positive experiences that y'all have had with his product. Saving funds here will allow me to get the wheels I want sooner. Also wondering if someone sells a kit of clips/adapters/etc. that Gary's stuff kit doesn't include?
5. Speaking of wheels, it seems like the Avant Garde M510s get mixed reviews. The roads here in N.C. are fantastic, so I am not so concerned about potholes, but I have seen examples of pitting and that does concern me. Any opinions or reviews -- I will go with 21s -- would be greatly appreciated.
6. Has anyone customized their headlights? Cracking open the E60's for angel eyes mods is all the rage, but I am more interested in blacking out the F10 inner housing to match the other black mods I intend to accomplish. Opening these lights is not for the faint of heart, so I was wondering if any forum members have started specializing in this yet.
I am sure I will have even more questions, but this is all I've got right now. So. Much. Typing!
Thank you for enduring the length of this post, I really appreciate your feedback. This forum seems very active, I am so psyched to get involved, cheers!