- Post is under moderation5 Series scoops more awards
/ #BMW-G30 / #BMW-G31 / #BMW-F90 / #BMW-G38 / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW / #BMW-5-Series-G30 / #BMW-5-Series-G31 / #BMW-5-Series-G38 / #BMW-M-Automobiles / #BMW-M5 / #BMW / #BMW-M5-F90 / #2018-BMW-M5 / #2018 / #BMW-M5-F90 / #BMW-5-Series-F90 / #BMW-5-Series-M5 / #BMW-5-Series-M5-F90 / #BMW-M5-xDrive / #xDrive /
The #BMW-5-Series-Saloon has been recognised once again, winning the ‘ #Best-Executive-Car ’ category, alongside the #BMW-5-Series-Touring , which was named ‘ #Best-Estate-Car ’, at the recent #UK-Car-of-the-Year-Awards . Evaluated and compared by a well-respected panel of UK journalists, these titles add another impressive UK accolade to the BMW 5 Series’ growing collection of international honours.
The multi-award-winning saloon impressed judges with its refinement, technology and build quality. Commenting on the win, #Alex-Grant , UK COTY judge, said: “The 5 Series impresses not only for its cutting-edge connected, electrified and partially-autonomous technology, but because the car underneath does everything so brilliantly.”
The 5 Series Touring was commended for its flexibility, practicality and driving dynamics. Nargess Banks, UK COTY judge, said: “BMW has mastered the art of designing and engineering the perfect estate car, replete with intelligent technology.”
The 5 Series’ success story continues, with both the saloon and the touring models winning more prestigious awards recently.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationCAR: BMW / E61 530i SE / 2006 E61 530I / #BMW-530i-SE / #BMW-530i-E61 / #BMW-E61 / #BMW-530i-SE / #BMW-530i-SE-E61 / #BMW-530i-Touring / #BMW-530i-Touring-E61 / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-5-Series-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-E61 / #BMW /
TOTAL MILEAGE: 52,390
MILEAGE THIS MONTH: 336
MPG THIS MONTH: 22.1
COST THIS MONTH: nil
Life with the E61 continues to be a joy at the moment, although there’s some expenditure on the horizon – hopefully it won’t be too painful. So far, the list of items to be attended to is growing, but I’m saving them up to see if I can get them all done at once. The iDrive is showing that the front brakes pads have about 2,000 miles left in them, but my experience with this system is that it’s rather pessimistic, and that that things often last a little longer… here’s hoping!
I’ve also started to experience a bit of a creaking from the front end when going over speed bumps, and I can occasionally hear this when turning from lock-to-lock, during slow, parking manoeuvres.
There’s the soft-close on the off side, rear door to be checked, plus the tailgate rust I mentioned last month. Also, despite my best efforts to clean and adjust the windscreen washer jets, they remain pretty pathetic at their job, so there’s a potential issue there, too.
I’m hoping that the front pads will be the only item I have to pay for, and that the rest will be covered by the warranty. But, as the policy is the version that has the £250 excess, I’m storing the jobs up to get them all done at once!
I’m tempted to pop in and see the chaps at BM Sport, so they can give the car a thorough once-over before I go to BMW… at least that way I should know what I’m going to be in for, and there won’t be any nasty shocks when I visit a main dealer.
More on all this next month.
This expenditure is in the offing; I’m letting a few niggly jobs build up so that they can all be tackled together.
Life with my ‘new’ 530i Touring continues to be a joy.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationCAR: #BMW-E61 / #BMW-530i-SE / #BMW-530i-E61 / BMW-E61 / #BMW-530i-SE / #BMW-530i-SE-E61 / #BMW-530i-Touring / #BMW-530i-Touring-E61 / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-5-Series-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-E61 / #BMW /
MILEAGE THIS MONTH: 1,836
TOTAL MILEAGE: 52,054
MPG THIS MONTH: 27.6
COST THIS MONTH: £27 ( #Tunai-Firey / #Tunai-Creative )
BOB HARPER 2006 E61 530I
One of the few defects I’ve found on the car so far is a small amount of rusting at the bottom corners of the rear window. My new 530i Touring has been a pleasure to own and drive so far.
It’s been a busy month for the 530i and, judging by the miles I’ve covered, I may well have to get on to my insurance company with the bombshell that I’ve woefully underestimated my annual mileage. I had this idea that if I wasn’t commuting to the office every day, I’d cover far fewer miles – perhaps this month will be the exception to prove that rule.
So far I’m one month into 530i ownership and, to say I’m happy with my purchase would be a bit of an understatement. The first big trip was a Bank Holiday weekend dash to the West Country and back, for a friend’s 50th birthday bash. The E61 shrugged off the 500-mile trip with disdain. Comfortable, quiet, refined – everything you could wish for on a long journey – and perhaps most importantly, it got a big thumb’s-up from Mrs H, who proclaimed at the end of the weekend that the seats were the best she’d ever sat in – they don’t call them ‘Comfort’ seats for nothing!
The trip did highlight a couple of points of note. I don’t think I mentioned last month that part of the car’s comprehensive spec were adaptive xenon lights and at night in the Devon lanes, these really were very impressive. Perhaps not hugely powerful on their dipped setting, but once flicked to high beam, it was as if someone had strapped a couple of searchlights to the bonnet – they really do light up the road for some distance ahead.
At the same time, I was able to check out the operation of the night vision camera, but have to admit that this was a major disappointment, or as my son Archie commented: “That wasn’t worth staying awake for!” When it’s switched on you more or less just get a cloudy grey screen and you have to be so close to a heat source for the camera to pick it up, that you’d have hit the object before actually spotting it.
Despite having run an E61 several years ago, I’d forgotten the various rattles and creaks that can emanate from the rear load cover area and, as I’m a little OCD about these sorts of noises, I’m going to have to try and get to the bottom of them as they are driving me a bit mad. But I might have my work cut out, as the load cover goes up and down (most of the time) as the electric tailgate opens, so any fi x mustn’t get in the way of that.
While we’re on the subject of the tailgate, I was having a quick look at the load cover mechanism the other day and noticed two small patches of rust, where the split folding glass section meets the rest of the tailgate. They’re at the outer edges of the hatch and I’m hoping they can be attended to under the anti-corrosion warranty. It’s not something I’ve really heard of before on the E61; has anyone else been affected by this problem?
Another item that’ll need attention under the Extended Warranty is the off side rear door, because the soft-close mechanism no longer works. I’ve never really been a fan of this system, as it just adds weight and complexity but, if the car has it fitted and I can get it repaired without having to pay for it, then it seems worthwhile.
Just room for two more points before I sign off. Firstly, despite only being a smidgen over 10 years old, it’s easy to forget how far automotive connectivity has come on in that time. The E61 doesn’t have an USB input, which means that controlling music via the iDrive from external devices such as an iPhone or iPod, isn’t currently an option. There’s an Aux input but, quite why BMW decided to locate this at the back of the centre console where it’s only really useful for rear seat passengers, is beyond me.
While my VW Passat was terminally dull to drive, I did get very used to being able to stream music via Bluetooth, so I’ve purchased a little gadget called a Tunai Firefly, which allows me to stream audio in the E61. It’s basically a tiny Bluetooth gadget no larger than a USB drive, that plugs into the Aux input. It needs power, but this isn’t a problem as the car is fitted with two, 12V power outputs, right next to the Aux input. Once you’ve paired your phone with it you can stream music via the Aux input section of the Entertainment menu on the iDrive. Sadly, you can’t go to the next track or anything like that without touching the phone, which is obviously a no-no these days but, as I quite often just listen to audiobooks on longer journeys, this isn’t a problem for me. I’ll find a more long-term solution for this with one of the various aftermarket systems but, as a quick-fix measure, I’m very pleased with it.
Finally, a word about the sat nav. Perhaps I’ve been spoiled by driving so many modern cars whose iDrive set-ups are akin to superfast broadband, but the system in the E61 is more like going back to using a dial-up modem! It’s so slooooow and clunky to use, I find it hard to believe we used to think it was pretty good. It is possible to retrofit the later, CIC navigation system (which would also sort any connectivity issues), but this is likely to cost about £1,000, To put that in perspective, it’s.
This neat little device enables me to stream audio from my iPhone; a connectivity feature not available in the E61.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderation5 Series developments / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-G31 / #BMW-G31 / #BMW-G30 / #BMW-5-Series-G31 / #BMW / #BMW-540i-xDrive-M-Sport-Touring-G31 / #BMW-520d-G31 / #BMW-520d-Touring-G31 / #BMW-525d-Touring-G31 / #BMW-525d-Touring
The 5 Series saloon is having its engine line-up bolstered with the arrival of two four-cylinder units from BMW’s modular engine family.
A new entry level car – the 520i – is being launched, together with a new 525d model. Both engines have been developed from units featuring an extremely lightweight, thermodynamically-optimised, all-aluminium construction.
Thanks to TwinPower Turbo technology, they combine maximum power with impressive efficiency, and comply with the EU6 emissions standard.
The petrol 520i is a four-cylinder 1,998cc powerplant that produces 184hp and 290Nm, enabling a 0-62mph time of 7.8secs, a top speed of 146mph, official economy of 52.3mpg and CO2 emissions of 124g/km.
The four-cylinder BMW 525d diesel engine produces 231hp and 500Nm of torque. This can push the car to 60mph in 6.6secs and on to a top speed of 155mph. Fuel consumption comes in at a respectable 64.2mpg, resulting in CO2 emissions of just 116g/km.
The new 2017 BMW 5 Series Touring upholds a long tradition of being a perfect estate car for the premium car buyer who wants it all. Hot on the heels of the new 5 Series saloon, it’ll be in showrooms this June, with four engine options initially, and more to follow.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationYEAR: #2006
MILEAGE THIS MONTH: 106
TOTAL MILEAGE: 50,218
MPG THIS MONTH: 20.4
COST THIS MONTH: Not telling!
CAR: #BMW-E61 / #BMW-530i-SE / #BMW-530i-SE-E61 / #BMW-530i-Touring / #BMW-530i-Touring-E61 / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-5-Series-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-E61 / #BMW /
With the M6 gone and the Passat shortly to be returning to the leasing company who own it I was rapidly running out of time to purchase some new wheels. I’d more or less decided on an E9x 330i – Saloon, Coupé or Touring, I wasn’t going to be too fussy, but if the right car came up a Touring was the ideal option as it just gives that added bit of practicality while not losing out dynamically to its two- and four-door relations. Just about the only stipulation was that it would have to have the N52 engine as I didn’t fancy shelling out £1500 when the N53 incarnation would inevitably fry its injectors and that the car would have to have heated seats, and would preferably have an auto ‘box. I went and had a look at a few and in the price range I was looking at the cars really weren’t up to scratch. Of course most things can be fixed, but if you have to shell out on remedial work just after buying a car you might as well buy a better one in the first place. And my budget wasn’t looking too healthy.
After a few wasted journeys it was always back to the drawing board and then one Saturday morning the car you can see in the pictures popped up on my saved searches from when I’d been considering a 5 Series. Reading the ad had my mouth watering and I was on the phone and arranging a time to go and view the car before you could say, ‘But it’s not a 330i!’
It was close to me and had a spec to die for – Comfort seats complete with heating, ventilation and massage functions, Professional sat nav, Bluetooth, Style 32 alloys, an electric tailgate as well as Night Vision and best of all a Head- Up-Display. And I love a HUD.
Mindbogglingly for a 2006 machine it had only covered 50k miles and the icing on the cake was that it’s still under a Comprehensive BMW extended warranty until November this year. The extra layer of icing was that it was cheaper than all the 330is I’d looked at.
So, it’s a 530i, and the first thing I’m getting used to is its thirst, but that was a conscious decision I took – not to buy a diesel. Living in London and having a non-Euro 6 diesel doesn’t really mix any more (or shortly won’t when the new Ultra Low Emission Zones kick in) and as I couldn’t justify spending Euro 6 diesel money on a car I decided it would have to be a Euro 4 compliant petrol, which thankfully the 530i is.
I’ve literally just picked it up so have done less than 100 miles so far, but as far as I can work out everything works and it drives very nicely indeed. There are a few body blemishes that need attending to and the biggest decision I’m going to have to make will be whether or not to invest in an M Sport body kit as I do think they look so much better in M Sport guise. I’m currently telling myself that with the money I saved on buying the car I could easily justify the expense of getting the styling upgraded… Watch this space.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationMARK R’S E61 M5 TOURING / #BMW-E61 / #BMW-M5 / #BMW-M5-Touring / #BMW-M5-Touring-E61 / #BMW-M5-E61 / #V10 / #BMW / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-5-Series-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-M5 / #BMW-5-Series-M5-E61 / #S85B50 / #S85 / #BMW-S85 / #BMW
Winter is a pretty bleak time for petrolheads in Britain. It’s not like other countries where you’re blessed with actual snow and frozen lakes to drift – you get rain, a bit more rain, and if you’re really lucky some of that extra-cold rain.
The one saving grace with this is the time it gives you to embark on a proper winter makeover for 2017. But I’m not talking about super-glossy paintwork or stanced wheels for the M5, but instead some good ol’ fashioned track day prep! My E61 M5 Touring is – and always will be – a road car, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be prepped for track use without having a negative effect on its road-going abilities. Unfortunately I’m mechanically inept when it comes to working on a car, so I entrusted the team at Regal Autosport in Southampton to ensure the M5 was ready for a summer of abuse. From supercharging Audi R8s to tuning 750hp Porsche Turbos, Regal Autosport are definitely no strangers when it comes to prepping rare, highly-strung cars for road and track use. Put simply, if a £150,000 supercar is in safe hands here, the M5 Touring definitely hasn’t got anything to worry about.
After chatting with Ash at Regal we put together a plan for the M5’s track prep, starting with installation of the AP Racing brake kit I picked up earlier in the year. This is probably the most comprehensive kit available for the E60/E61 M5 if you’re intending to hit the track, an absolute must given how disappointing (and short-lived) the OE brakes are the circuit. With the M5 Touring weighing just under two tonnes, the AP Racing kit comprises six-piston calipers matched with 378x36mm two-piece discs up front, and fourpiston calipers with 366x26mm two-piece discs on the rear. Serious brakes for a serious car while remaining totally compliant on the road.
Next on the list was tyres, and there was only one model I had in mind for the M5 – Michelin Pilot Super Sports. A firm favourite within the M performance world (and fitted as standard to newer models including the M3), I opted for the OE M5 sizes which come in at 255/40 19 and 275/35 19. Pilot Super Sports remain one of the best-handling tyres for road and track use as well as being rated to over 188mph. Looks like that 166mph limiter will need removing next…
Brakes fitted, rubber mounted and an oil/filter change later, it was ready for one of the most important parts of track prep – proper alignment and setup. Often overlooked, a proper laser alignment and fast road setup will more often than not yield greater performance gains than any fancy bolt-on mod. You can’t just fit performance parts and expect ‘em to transform your car without being setup properly first.
Camber, toe-in and castor now adjusted, the M5 was aligned for a conservative fast-road setup to provide a good base on the track. With additional camber and toe adjustability available if necessary, the M5 already feels completely transformed prior to being aligned with far less understeer and improved turn-in. Perfect. The real test will come when it hits the track next month – who’s betting we’ll have some rain…?
THANKS AND CONTACT
Regal Autosport 02380 558636 www.regalautosport.com
Michelin Tyres 0845 3661590 www.michelin.co.uk
Wheel Alignment Centre 02380 332906 www.wheelalignmentcentre.co.uk
AP Racing 024 7663 9595 www.apracing.com
Stock M5 brakes not up to the job on track.
Monster AP Racing brakes now fitted all-round.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderation/ #BMW / #Alpina-B10-3.3-Touring / #Alpina-B10-3.3-Touring-E39 / #Alpina-B10-E39 / #BMW-E39 / #BMW-E39-Alpina / #BMW-E39-Touring / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-5-Series-E39 / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-E39 / BMW / #Alpina / #AC-Schnitzer / #Air-Lift-Performance / #Air-Lift / #BMW-E39-Air-Lift
E39 Touring’s arches swallow the #Alpina-Classics with ease. Lows when you want them, sensible ride height when you don’t.
RYAN’S E39 ALPINA B10 3.3 TOURING
I’ve been living a #LIFEONAIR for just about a month now and I’m loving every minute of it. Aside from a very, very angry bunch of Alpina enthusiasts sending me hate mail and calling me out on the Internet, life with the bagged B10 couldn’t be simpler.
I’d forgive you for thinking that by adding extra airlines and another management system the suspension system might become susceptible to leaks and a bit, well ‘modified’. That’s absolutely not the case and it’s actually much more robust than the OE BMW SLS system. Granted, the BMW SLS only runs on the rear of the car and allows self-levelling to the fixed front axle but the pump size is puny and tank capacity equally small. The two #Viair 444c pumps included in the Air Lift Performance kit are never stretched to fill the two, two-gallon tanks and everything runs at about 40% duty. Thanks to the quality of the Air Lift Performance front bags and leader lines there’s been absolutely no leaks from the get-go. This was helped by the thorough instructions included in the kit that would allow even a relative amateur to install the kit with ease.
Since the install I’ve covered some 2000 miles in the car and it’s very much been a fi t and forget affair. I’ve only lifted the factory E39 boot floor to show interested parties the trick setup lurking beneath. Driving the car at a sensible ride height, it’s really difficult to identify a difference in ride quality between the Alpina suspension and the Air Lift Performance setup. It sounds crazy, and I’m sure that statement will leave plenty of Alpina lovers chortling and shaking their heads, but it’s true though. Air Lift Performance 3H is such a sophisticated system that it can out-handle even the most coveted BMW suspension upgrade. Now that this car is on air there is no way I would go back to a static setup.
It’s the flexibility that strikes me the most. It’s already a hugely versatile car; it can carry big loads, has the heart of a true performance car and now it can party with the show crowd while remaining grown up and demure. Likewise, through town it’s possible to drive at a dangerously low height, usually not possible with a pressure-based system. This is because #Air-Lift-Performance-3H continuously monitors pressure and height and adjusts bag pressure to maintain ride height. This means it’s possible to have your wheels mere mm from the arches and not have contact, pretty fun for posing. Parked up at a slammed height the E39 can mix it with the best of them, however park it at ride height and no one is any the wiser. It’s also perfect for visiting the in-laws and avoiding awkward car questions from non-car relatives. For those reasons alone Air Lift Performance 3H is a game-changing suspension system and something I’m certainly pleased I plumped for on this project.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationNew #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-G31 / #BMW-G31 / #BMW-G30 / #BMW-5-Series-G31 / #BMW / #BMW-540i-xDrive-M-Sport-Touring-G31 / #BMW-520d-G31 / #BMW-520d-Touring-G31
The G30 Saloon has only just gone on sale yet BMW has already launched the Touring version and the new model received its worldwide premiere at the Geneva Show. Somehow BMW always seems to get the styling of its Tourings absolutely spot on and in the flesh the new G31 really does look the part, especially in blue with the M Sport styling package. Part of the reason for getting the car to market so quickly is that in its native Germany many customers will hold off from ordering a new 5 Series until the Touring is launched as it’s seen as a more practical version of the model and estates sell very well in Germany.
The new Touring is 36mm longer, eight millimetres wider and 10mm higher than the outgoing model and, crucially, is up to 100kg lighter than the outgoing model. The boot capacity is increased too, as is its maximum permissible load and with the 40:20:40 split folding rear seats it looks very practical too. UK prices start at £38,385 for a #BMW-520d-SE-G31 and rises to £52,760 for a #BMW-540i-xDrive-M-Sport-Touring .Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.
- Post is under moderationMARK RICCIONI’S E61 M5 TOURING
/ #BMW-E61 / #BMW-M5 / #BMW-M5-Touring / #BMW-M5-Touring-E61 / #BMW-M5-E61 / V10 / #BMW / #BMW-5-Series / #BMW-5-Series-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-Touring / #BMW-5-Series-Touring-E61 / #BMW-5-Series-M5 / #BMW-5-Series-M5-E61 / #S85B50 / #S85 / #BMW-S85 / BMW
Manufacturers often strive for perfection. From the power delivery right through to the aerodynamics, the modern car is becoming freakishly perfect for the modern driver – a fact helped in part by stricter emissions combined with improved technologies. It’s safe to say BMW wasn’t striving for perfection when it built the M5 Touring. Its fuel tank is too small, the gearbox feels as smooth as root canal surgery and the engine burns oil so fast it’ll need a full oil change every 6000 miles or so. The on-board computer is way too complicated. The brakes give up after a few laps on track and the engine lacks any real grunt below 5000rpm.
It’s the polar opposite of modern motoring, but you know what? That’s really not a bad thing. Because it’s those imperfections – those quirks, which at times become annoyances – which give a car character and charm. If there’s one thing the M5 Touring doesn’t lack, it’s charm. Who in their right mind thought it’d be a good idea to wedge a 507hp, naturally aspirated #V10 into a car that usually ends up doing the motorway commute? It’s not just the horsepower that makes this a terrible, brilliant idea but it’s the type of engine. High-revving V10s have almost always been exclusive to the world of racing and supercars, but not cars available in a Touring platform. It’s not some cross-platform shared engine, either. The S85 lump is exclusive to the E6x M5/M6 platform – never used before and never used again.
I made the jump into M5 ownership back in March 2015, and truth be told I had no idea what I was getting myself into... Probably a good thing in hindsight. It’s a car that’s all about its engine, but just jumping in and planting your foot will most likely leave you feeling underwhelmed.
It takes time to get to grips with. There’s a particular way – a specific set of modes – where the M5 works best. Stray from any of these and it’ll punish you, usually with crippling understeer, kangaroo gear changes or simply lack of low-down power. Truth be told, had I known all of this prior to ownership I probably wouldn’t have bothered. I like a car to be simple, one mode (preferably fast) and that’s it. But I’m glad I didn’t, as it’s undoubtedly my favourite car I’ve ever owned and my first foray into BMW ownership. Two years in and I’m ready to start a new chapter with the M5 Touring. Not selling it – absolutely no chance of that happening – but rather tweaking it with an array of carefully selected modifications that’ll further improve the ownership and experience rather than hinder it. In my mind I’m imagining an almost Clubsport-spec Estate, if that could ever be considered a thing, or should I say CSL edition. Brakes, exhaust, suspension and tyres are pretty high on my list – I don’t want to take it too far into the realm of being too specific or track-focused, after all the ability to actually throw the dog in the back and drive it everyday is what I love about it. But a few modifications wouldn’t hurt... Right? See more pictures of the build over at @mark_scenemedia on Instagram.Stream item published successfully. Item will now be visible on your stream.