If you were to take a poll among BMW enthusiasts, about which M5 was best, the E39 M5 would likely be the unanimous winner. Its combination of perfect sedan looks, a gorgeous naturally aspirated V8, and chassis dynamics that still feel incredible today make it impossible to beat among its M5 brethren. However, could it actually be the best sport sedan ever made? That’s what Tedward seems to think in this new video.
Admittedly, Tedward is a bit biased, as he owns an E39 M5, although the car he drives in this video isn’t his own. Though he does make some good arguments for it being the best.
The E39 M5 was the first ever M5 to use a V8 engine–a 4.9 liter 400 horsepower V8 that revved to around 7,000 rpm. It was a superb engine back in its day and, aside from maybe some reliability issues, it’s still every bit as superb. The noise it makes is also pretty incredible, even with a completely stock exhaust. There’s a deep, guttural roar as it climbs to its redline, which sounds so much better than modern M5 twin-turbo V8s.
It’s also one of the finest driving sedans ever made. The steering is recirculating ball, rather than rack and pinion, which is odd but still somehow works really well. But it’s the chassis balance, front-end feel, and suspension quality that really make it so special. Modern sport sedans could learn a thing or two from the E39 M5.
Is the E39 M5 the best sport sedan of all time? I personally can’t agree, simply because I haven’t driven one. However, it would have to be mind-blowing to even be my favorite M5 of all time, as the new M5 CS is potentially my favorite BMW. Though, I understand why many enthusiasts would choose the E39 M5, as it’s qualities and charm are seemingly hard to overlook.