: Did Anyone consider buying a e39 M5?



nateb26
05-19-10, 07:02 PM
I am currently considering buying either a cts-v or a e39 M5... I have done my fair share of research on both cars, and this is what I feel about them so far... I know the M5 is going to be fairly expensive to just maintain, not to mention repair costs for any M car, but i was wondering if the V is easy/cheap to maintain because its domestic? Will the potential cost of repairing the rear diff offset the cost of maintaing the M5, or do you think the M5 is going to cost way more to own whether I have to replace the rear diff (and add the aftermaret parts to help prevent the problem) or not? I definitely like the fact that the V doesnt have the "status" label attached to it like the M5 does... Any info that helps me sway towards the Cadillac side - or away from it- would be appreciated

AAIIIC
05-19-10, 07:11 PM
I considered an M5 - actually, my desire to have an E39 M5 someday led me to the V, which is basically the American version of the M5. I was never able to find an M5 for sale close enough to me to actually go drive, which was one reason I went with the V. Once I had driven a couple of Vs I didn't really think it was worth my time to travel somewhere just to drive an M5. The M5 seems to hold its value better, which means you're getting an older/higher mileage car for the same amount a newer used V goes for. But, on the other end, when it's time to sell the M5 will almost certainly be worth more.

jrosevear
05-19-10, 07:40 PM
I did.

I owned a Vette several years ago and a 3-series more recently, so I had firsthand experience with both BMW and with GM's performance products. And I knew one thing for sure: the M5 was going to be seriously expensive to maintain as it aged. BMW's engines last a long time, but their electronics tend to melt over time... and wow are they expensive. I also knew that maintaining a GM product was likely to be straightforward and a lot less expensive -- figure that any given BMW part will cost 4-5 times what you'd pay for an equivalent GM part from one of the big online vendors, maybe more. (Seriously. Go price some stuff.)

And while my budget happened to be pretty flexible, the price thing is worth taking seriously... if you can buy, say, an 05 V with 35k miles on it for what you'd pay for an 02 M5 with 70k... that's a big, big gap. I probably overpaid for my car, but I bought an extremely nice Cadillac-certified 06 that looked new and needed absolutely nothing. The M5 I could have gotten for the same money wouldn't have been nearly as nice -- and it definitely wouldn't have been BMW certified.

But really, here's what it should come down to, before you even start to dig in to practical considerations. You're buying a high performance car: Which one made you smile more when you drove it? For me, while the BMW is a seriously nice car and I'd enjoy owning one, the V is just more fun to drive, and has way more personality.

soulja
05-19-10, 07:44 PM
Yeah, I considered it before the V, but didn't want to deal with VANOS issues and the maintenance was scary. Most 3rd party warranty companies are scared to cover them, and it was easy to find a V with warranty left. You can't wrench on an M5 like you could a V. Plus, most that I found I felt were overpriced for mileage and model years. I also think the V looks better IMO.

nateb26
05-19-10, 08:27 PM
Well from what I have been finding I can pick up a '00-'01 M5 with about 75k on it for about 15-18 grand, meanwhile the 04-05 V seems to be going for around 19-22 grand with 60-80k on it, so i would probably be saving a little money with the M5 but I dont know if i would be losing in the long run... the bmw vanos system is known to have costly problems, but i know i will have to deal with the rear diff situation on the V.. even on a '06 because, if im not mistaken it is actually the same diff just with a stronger casing(?). How do the trannys in the 04-05 Vs hold up? anybody gotten well over 100k with no problems? My main concern is cost of ownership, is it expensive to maintain these V's, more so than your standard cts?

2manycars
05-19-10, 08:34 PM
I looked real close at an M5 before buying the V! It was second on my list also.

I have to admit I never drove one, but I read every review, article, and watched pretty much every video on both cars before picking the V. Now I realize driving both would have been better, the problem was that although there were a few I probably could have driven if I was seriously leaning towards one, I just never found the deal to make me serious to buy a particular one (and I live by DC, where there are quite a few around).

The M5 just always seemed over priced in comparison. Way more miles, and not nearly as what seemed to be the same condition for the same money. That is what got me looking closer at the V. I actually did find an M5 that was well taken care of, reasonable miles, and even brand new tires (for $4k more, but still a good deal for that M5)... but by that time I had already driven a couple of Vs... and knew it was the car for me.

Why?... the motor for one. A strong LS V8 is hard to beat! Love the torque and HP over the beemer. Styling was also another big reason. Uniqueness was part of it. Handling was huge for me. Like the V interior better.

Typing this out, I realize the M5 handles good, has a high reving motor, probably shifts a tad smoother, and is not all that bad to look at.... but the V just seemed to be more true to my personality (and it is), a hot rodder from way back.

Oddly enough I never even considered maintance and repair costs in my decision. I was looking for a 4 door fast great handling daily driver hotrod (and it Had to have a manual transmission ) that could allow me to take the kids to school and the wife and some friends to dinner... those were the main factors - and after driving the V I knew it was the car for me.

It is just plain fun to drive! After buying it, for the first month I was looking for any excuse to be able to drive it ("what... we need milk... ... can wait until tomorrow... that's ok I love you and I'll just go get some now"). :D

I've been in and driven some nice cars in my life (including BMW, Porche, and at a time a buddy's E55 was on my A list but no manual trans is available in the E55). For me the V has more personality, is truly fun to drive, what i think is the sportier nicer interior, and the roar of a high performance muscle car V8... is what did it for me.

Sorry for the long winded reply... but you asked. ;)

repenttokyo
05-19-10, 08:43 PM
I also seriously shopped the e39 M5 before buying my V. I am a member of the BMW Car Club of America, and currently own an e34 5-Series. The e39 M5 is probably the most expensive M car to maintain. The engine components are extremely expensive, and very little is shared with any other e39 under the hood. I have been warned repeatedly by BMW specialist mechanics in my club to stay away from this vehicle on the secondhand market.

I lusted after one for many years, but I am much happier with the V. The aftermarket is far less expensive and more broad, and parts costs are not even comparable.

Not all BMW's are expensive to maintain - my ownership experience has proven that - but the e39 M5 is very, very expensive to maintain. I actually find that they are very easy to find cheap these days - cheaper than the V - due to owners dumping them when they realize the repair bills they will soon be looking at.

Another thing to consider is that the e39 platform was designed in the 1990's. It's very, very old. The CTS platform is much more modern, especially with regards to the chassis.

SFBayV
05-19-10, 09:04 PM
Good question. As a lot of others have already said, maintenance will be expensive. I've had 2 M5's, a 2000 and a 2001. The S62 engine is a really nice one. It loves to rev and makes good power. On the downside, VANOS is a maintenance nightmare. I believe that there may have been a recall for that. My 2001 went back to the dealer to have it repaired/replaced. My 2000 had transmissions problem that the dealer didn't want to take care of. It would randomly jump out of any gear above 2nd.

I'd say that the biggest plus for the V over the M5 is the engine. The M5's S62 is complex to say the least. To give you an example, it uses 8 throttle bodies as opposed to the one used in the LS6/LS2 of the V1. Making any performance upgrades to the M5 will also be more costly than on a V. A pair of Dinan headers are $8000. the mufflers are around $1700.00 for cans alone. Cams, heads, superchargers for the S62 will pose not only a huge drain on your bank account, but are not emissions legal in many states. Reliability will also become an issue.

In my opinion, pound-for-pound and dollar-for-dollar the V will be a better value from a performance standpoint. The E39 also looks very dated.

-C

nateb26
05-19-10, 09:08 PM
I also seriously shopped the e39 M5 before buying my V. I am a member of the BMW Car Club of America, and currently own an e34 5-Series. The e39 M5 is probably the most expensive M car to maintain. The engine components are extremely expensive, and very little is shared with any other e39 under the hood. I have been warned repeatedly by BMW specialist mechanics in my club to stay away from this vehicle on the secondhand market.

I lusted after one for many years, but I am much happier with the V. The aftermarket is far less expensive and more broad, and parts costs are not even comparable.

Not all BMW's are expensive to maintain - my ownership experience has proven that - but the e39 M5 is very, very expensive to maintain. I actually find that they are very easy to find cheap these days - cheaper than the V - due to owners dumping them when they realize the repair bills they will soon be looking at.

Another thing to consider is that the e39 platform was designed in the 1990's. It's very, very old. The CTS platform is much more modern, especially with regards to the chassis.

Did not know the cts platform was relatively brand new... good to know. I too have had my share of bmws and v8 american cars - I have always loved the longevity of bmw engines and manual transmissions, but have also owned a couple camaros and mustangs and like v8 torque and the availability of cheap aftermarket parts that are fairly easy to intall in your driveway... another thing that I hate, although bmws are very well made quality cars is the pretentious attitude that alot of owners have that ruins it for the rest of us(may have mentioned that in o.p) Any advice on how many miles NOT to go over when purchasing a used V?

JDB
05-19-10, 09:42 PM
yes, the M5 was on my list 2+ months ago when I was car shopping. I test drove a few of each, and coming from German cars (Audi) for the last 12 years, M5's interior was what I was expecting and quality of materials that are clearly nicer than the V, but I had to go back at least 3-4 years older for the same money and my '05 V only had 24k on it and CPO. it was clear the V was/is a better value and it was time for a change.

lilgCTS-V
05-19-10, 10:24 PM
i was in the same situation deciding between the m5 and the cts-v i decided the V would be more friendly because it is actually more economical, parts are cheap and mods are fair. if something goes on the V lets be real its not gunna make u go bankrupt, to fix things on the M are much more expensive and they have stupid silly problems, the only problems ive had with my V are directly related to how i drive the car, carrier bushings playing the stereo loud all the time, stuff like that and now that i think about it my car has only seen the dealer for the carrier bushing LOL so yea IMO CTS-V is for me.

greywolf40
05-19-10, 11:27 PM
I current have a first gen cts-v and I used to have a jaguar s-type r (somewhat comparable, 400hp import sport sedan). Maintenance on the ctsv has been incomparably easier on the V. On the jag I basically had to take it to the dealership for everything. I haven't run into anything on the V I couldn't do myself and usually I could find a part on ebay for next to nothing (just replaced the starter, 60 bucks brand new). I absolutely hate the shoddy build quality and lack of refinement on the V but I love everything else and when it comes time to upgrade I'll probably go with a second gen V and not another import.

nateb26
05-20-10, 12:35 AM
what about depreciation? M5s dont seem like theyre going to go down too much more... what about the V's you think they could possibly go down to like 15gs for a 50k mi V in a year?

Baltimore07V
05-20-10, 03:59 AM
what about depreciation? M5s dont seem like theyre going to go down too much more... what about the V's you think they could possibly go down to like 15gs for a 50k mi V in a year?

Since the car market has started to recover, the insane price slides on these cars has stopped. The rareness factor is starting to hit as well, so 15k in a year will be hard to find unless its a high mileage '04. I would council you to look beyond the price of the used V, as if your buying a performance car like these you need to look at extended costs. If you buy a V, you will want a short throw shifter, axles, MM/Trans mounts, clutch, etc. There are a couple basic mods you will need to put money out for, or want to in short order. Factor this into your buying decision. The same goes for the M5. Look at common upgrades/replacement parts, and find out what they cost. Currently the most expensive out of warranty item you would have to replace from a V is about a $1500, and thats the weak differential on an 04/05. All the labor is straight forward, and can be done by any GM mechanic. M5's are totally different story, and have a reputation for being garage queens (drive on sunday, new throttle body on monday).


But as for the V v. M5. One word somes it up. Torque. God I love Torque. :sneaky:

repenttokyo
05-20-10, 10:36 AM
what about depreciation? M5s dont seem like theyre going to go down too much more... what about the V's you think they could possibly go down to like 15gs for a 50k mi V in a year?

i'm seeing M5's selling for between 10 and 12k, especially the less desireable 2000 models.

maxspeed96ct
05-20-10, 03:32 PM
I looked into getting a M5 before I got the V.
Found a realy nice red one with red and black leather. Loved the car.

but just couldnt justify paying 28k for a 2001. ( just last summer)

Plus I wasnt sure on how easy they are to work on and etc.



When it came down the the $$ the V was a better bang for the buck.

plus with my bolt ons and a cam I cant wait to run into a M5 on the highway :sneaky:

perfect
05-20-10, 04:21 PM
I drove an 01 E39 M5 in high school (my dad moved to another state and didn't mind me taking his car "occasionally"). I absolutely loved it and decided that when I graduated and got a real job it would be my first big boy purchase. My dad's 01 M5 has only 20k miles on it and is absolutely mint but when I was looking for M5's (back in 07) they were still really expensive (high 20k's) and had a lot of mileage. I have heard bad things about high mile M5's (mainly - replacing or fixing the VANOS system in the engine).

What ultimately let me to the CTS-V was that I wanted a 4 door car with a big engine and a 6-speed. Very few other options exist for such a car. I'm glad that I made my choice. The V is comparably as quick as an M5 but a helluva lot less to maintain.

I also didn't like the fact that my purchasing power ($28k was my budget at the time) would only buy me an old (5+ years) M5 or one that was beat to hell. I bought my 05 w/ 33k miles in April of 2007 for only $25k. I think I made the right choice.

jrosevear
05-20-10, 05:53 PM
i'm seeing M5's selling for between 10 and 12k, especially the less desireable 2000 models.

I saw a couple of cars near that range when I was shopping, but they were 2000s with 100k+ miles... the purchase price is just the beginning of what you'd spend on a car like that.

lollygagger8
05-21-10, 07:45 AM
I always have to fix shit on my bros e34. Ooweee are those parts expensive. Not m5 $$, but still. Plus parts are not readily available from anywhere but the stealership. Plus zi germans put shit together really weird. We put sway bars on his car and it was a major pita. Im pretty sure I threw a wrench when we did the rear ones.

Besides, bmw owners are way bigger pricks than caddy owners lol

repenttokyo
05-21-10, 10:20 AM
I always have to fix shit on my bros e34. Ooweee are those parts expensive. Not m5 $$, but still. Plus parts are not readily available from anywhere but the stealership. Plus zi germans put shit together really weird. We put sway bars on his car and it was a major pita. Im pretty sure I threw a wrench when we did the rear ones.

Besides, bmw owners are way bigger pricks than caddy owners lol

really? i find my e34 to be mega reliable, even with 280k on the clock. Also, parts are really easy and cheap to source from places like www.bmaparts.com. Might want to try them, I regularly pay 40-60% less than dealer list from them.

my car's got full bilstein sport and eibach suspenion, rides like a dream. I also find the car pretty easy to work on...it's a simple vehicle.

Albertan
05-21-10, 03:27 PM
I enjoy working on cars as a hobby. I have my 2006 V as my reliable drive anywhere in good weather car. Then for fun I am working on a couple of BMW 97 3 series cars. True that these cars are a bit different than GM but once you know what's what it isn't too bad. Parts are available through many on line vendors for reasonable prices. Thing is I do not have much money invested in these cars so I can afford to rebuild the engines etc. I don't think the original poster wanted to buy a hobby car to work on!
Also remember the V is a very stealthy car, who gives a second look to an old guy driving a 4 door sedan. The M5 looks like it is on steroids and looks like it is spoiling for a race.

rand49er
05-21-10, 03:37 PM
... Also remember the V is a very stealthy car, who gives a second look to an old guy driving a 4 door sedan. ...Certainly no hot young babes. :(

JimmyH
05-21-10, 04:26 PM
maybe you are losing your sex appeal Randy

Albertan
05-21-10, 08:09 PM
Certainly no hot young babes. :(

I get hot young babes to ride in my car, they are my daughters though....
I learned many years ago that girls/women care not one whit about the car you drive. Only other car guys take note of the car. Speaking of that, a security guy at my Las Vegas condo saw me on the elevator with my V hat and mentioned it. Then I told him I had the accessory for the hat...my V. He had been watching it for the last couple of days so there you go.

V-Eight
05-21-10, 08:16 PM
Girls do pay attention, if you're driving something expensive. Women are genetically programmed to look for signs of success in a mate, whether or not they conciously acknowledge the car or not. Then there is of course, the sluts/gold diggers, that will be all over you if you have a Lambo or any other rare exotic.

jrosevear
05-21-10, 08:53 PM
Certainly no hot young babes. :(

Kids don't know nothin'. I've had several hot 40ish babes tell me that my raven 06 is way sexier than a BMW...

2manycars
05-21-10, 09:19 PM
Kids don't know nothin'. I've had several hot 40ish babes tell me that my raven 06 is way sexier than a BMW...

Now your talking... those are the girls my age. ;)

JimmyH
05-22-10, 12:34 AM
I dont know, I got my wife because of my sporty little red Saturn; that was a couple lifetimes ago though

Baltimore07V
05-22-10, 03:46 AM
My wife dug my 1990 Olds Toronado Trofeo back in college.

rand49er
05-22-10, 07:15 AM
maybe you are losing your sex appeal RandyMemories ... I got GREAT memories.

gsx-lex
05-22-10, 08:02 PM
I came pretty close to buying a M5. It was similarly priced (but much older). As everyone else has mentioned, I decided on the V because I've worked on BMW's before, and it wasn't cheap. Plus, I love the lines of the V.

thebigjimsho
05-27-10, 06:25 PM
maybe you are losing your sex appeal Randy
Randy is a sexy beast. May I be so studly and young-looking at his old geezer age...

thebigjimsho
05-27-10, 06:26 PM
Oh, and have you priced out an '04 V lately? Their prices are holding pretty steadily since last year...

omfg
06-03-10, 01:19 AM
I was torn between the two also. In the end I made my decision based on maintenance and looks. I've owned e36s and e30s for the past ten years, and found the cooling systems do not last very long, and the idea of working on that complicated v8 in a such a tiny compartment scared me. I also couldn't find one with less than 80k on it... I was initially disappointed in the handling and generally build quality and design of the interior of my '04 V, but as I have replaced bushings and added the ipod kit, adjusted the seat, etc... I love it!!! I highly recommend buying one! Even though my diff exploded last week.

lollygagger8
06-03-10, 08:53 AM
really? i find my e34 to be mega reliable, even with 280k on the clock. Also, parts are really easy and cheap to source from places like www.bmaparts.com. Might want to try them, I regularly pay 40-60% less than dealer list from them.

my car's got full bilstein sport and eibach suspenion, rides like a dream. I also find the car pretty easy to work on...it's a simple vehicle.

You must be German lol

repenttokyo
06-03-10, 10:47 AM
You must be German lol

hehe nope!

JimmyH
06-03-10, 01:06 PM
most of these hiperf cars are affordable to own if you know how to work on them.

they are expensive and a PITA if you dont

R4a2m0o
06-04-10, 05:06 PM
The E39 IMO is the best looking BMW ever... stock for stock and inconsiderate of upkeep and maintenance I'd rather have the BMW. The interior is beautiful and has good materials and that's important to me. The sound of the engine and exhaust is better than the American cars (go on youtube and search for eisenmann or dinan m5). It's just a better all around car, it's a 5 series bimmer, our car is a CTS. Nice leather, stitched dash, aluminum/wood trim, ostrich inserts, alcantara headliner, etc. BMW pays WAY more attention to detail than any American cars.

I seriously considered and E39 M5. I know a lot about them now. You honestly don't want a 2000 model, you want an 01 or above with low miles (expensive). They 01's have revised navigation, angel eyes CELIS, LED taillights, parking sensors etc etc. This brings the price up already.

The S62 engine is only found in the M5 and the Z8 making it rare and parts expensive. It's greatly overengineered and expensive to fix. Just finding somebody to work on it if you are not a mechanic is difficult. 8 butterflies, velocity stacks, double vanos, carbon buildup problems, vanos problems. Just like any BMW it is great when it's under warranty!!!! IMO, the LSx engines are far superior to any naturally aspirated BMW V8 because of reliability, power output, and simplicity.

Upgrades and maintenance change the whole ball game. Dinan headers for the M5 are 8000 dollars. For that price you could turbocharge an LSx. A mail order tune can run a 1000 dollars for a wee bit of throttle response and 5 peak horsies. For that price you can dyno tune a V. A 3.45 differential is 3500 dollars on the M5. For that price you could get a brand new diff, cryo treat it, and still have money left to beef up the suspension.

I don't know what will happen to the V's resale value. I put mine up for sale locally and I have already had several very very strong interests in it which makes me feel better about buying it. Seems like they are fairly hard to come by so there will always be people looking for them which will hopefully keep the price up. I just hope they don't depreciate like camaros and trans ams... :bonkers:

jrosevear
06-04-10, 05:51 PM
The sound of the engine and exhaust is better than the American cars (go on youtube and search for eisenmann or dinan m5).

Uh... you HAVE heard a GM hi-po smallblock with an aftermarket exhaust at least once in your life, haven't you? Because the sound of a BMW V8 is really not even in the same league, even with an overpriced Dinan exhaust system.

MAPerformance
06-04-10, 06:16 PM
I wasn't considering the M5 when I was looking at buying a car to replace my WRX. A couple months in the V and I sometimes regret the decision..... only sometimes.

tweeter81
06-04-10, 07:05 PM
Uh... you HAVE heard a GM hi-po smallblock with an aftermarket exhaust at least once in your life, haven't you? Because the sound of a BMW V8 is really not even in the same league, even with an overpriced Dinan exhaust system.

Exactly, I was going to make the same comment!

tweeter81
06-04-10, 07:11 PM
BMW pays WAY more attention to detail than any American cars.

And the consumer also pays WAY more $$$ for that better interior on that car. It all shakes out the same in the end. You could do a complete custom interior on any American car and have it be roughly the same price as its European counterpart and in most cases the American car will be still be the faster car. Not trying to flame you here, but I just think the crappy interior argument is way over-used.

Seems like they are fairly hard to come by so there will always be people looking for them which will hopefully keep the price up. I just hope they don't depreciate like camaros and trans ams... :bonkers:

I booked my 2004 V out about this time last year and the value on it (keep in mind I only drove it about 2500 miles since then) has only dropped by about $500. It sure seems to me as more people wreck their first gens, and more people start to research how badass these cars are, the demand just keeps going up for the first gens. Also, there was only less than 10,000 examples ever made (although I am not certain on the numbers, but that seems to be what I have seen most often). The used values have started to flatten out significantly.

jrosevear
06-04-10, 07:49 PM
I wasn't considering the M5 when I was looking at buying a car to replace my WRX. A couple months in the V and I sometimes regret the decision..... only sometimes.

I owned BMWs for years. I have no regrets. This thing is like an M5 crossed with a badass Chevelle, except way easier to live with. When it dies I'll buy another one, assuming that gas hasn't gone up to $15 a gallon or something.

JimmyH
06-04-10, 08:36 PM
nothing beats the sound of a pushrod V8. nothing.

The ISF's artificially tuned sound comes fairly close. I heard a dinan 5 series once. sounded good, but nothing like a true ohv V8.

repenttokyo
06-04-10, 08:57 PM
if I was going to buy an M5, it would be an E34. Last of the hand-built M cars.

jrosevear
06-04-10, 09:07 PM
if I was going to buy an M5, it would be an E34. Last of the hand-built M cars.

Almost bought one years ago. I just could not get used to the weird steering feel. Great cars, though. Real BMWs have straight sixes, IMO.

thebigjimsho
06-05-10, 08:38 PM
if I was going to buy an M5, it would be an E34. Last of the hand-built M cars.
I thought the early models with the outer ring on the wheels that made it look like whitewalls looked odd, but I'd love to have an original with those wheels now. Extra cooling on the brakes, FTW!

thebigjimsho
06-05-10, 08:45 PM
I thought the early models with the outer ring on the wheels that made it look like whitewalls looked odd, but I'd love to have an original with those wheels now. Extra cooling on the brakes, FTW!
Amsome!!



http://marouf.com/



http://album.hv.ee/isiklik/M5/tartu/IMG_7615.jpg



http://www.dancrouchblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/m5-front.jpeg

repenttokyo
06-05-10, 09:12 PM
I thought the early models with the outer ring on the wheels that made it look like whitewalls looked odd, but I'd love to have an original with those wheels now. Extra cooling on the brakes, FTW!

you can take those covers off and they are pretty nice-looking five spoke rims underneath,

thebigjimsho
06-05-10, 09:21 PM
you can take those covers off and they are pretty nice-looking five spoke rims underneath,
Bolt on at the track, take off when cruising...

R4a2m0o
06-14-10, 04:21 PM
I think that the Germans also pay more attention to detail. American cars IMO are kind of rough and raw. I sit in my V and I hear the DVD nav player seeking and the fan going in the head unit. All of the buttons are peeling and they feel cheap and loose. The PID control for the air conditioning doesn't work well on auto and the fan is obnoxiously loud. The stabilitrak system is not as good as other stability controls systems I have experienced. You can not make a W211 E-class spin out. The car lets you go to the brink, but won't let you lose it. I can't say the same for the V.

When you buy this car you generally accept that you will get a cheap interior because of the price difference. Is it really worth it though? To some people, being in a cheap feeling car that's fast is enough, but for others, they want to feel like they are driving something nice. I honestly think that you buy a GM car for the driveline, which on this car needs a fair bit of work to be right. The foot pedal parking brake would never be found in a German manual car. You almost have to laugh at that... It's the little things that add up that you really can't do anything about that make it worth it to buy a better car from the factory. Maybe not performance wise, but as a complete car, when you have grown up a little bit, you want some refinement. Go drive a mercedes E class or a 5-series and see how it feels. For the price range of a V you can get an E55. The V might beat it around a track, but everything else, including straight line, the E55 is far superior.

As for exhaust sound it's a matter of opinion. I've been around GM small blocks all my life. I've owned a LT1 WS-6, blown and stroked which is basically a GenII small block with aluminum reverse flow coolant heads. I've had everything from a magnaflow muffler to true duals and long tubes on it. I currently own the V. And I worked at a GM hi-po shop for two years on LS1/LS2's. The sound of the exhaust on GM motors is what I would describe as brute force. The sound of the smaller displacement v8's (ford, BMW) is what I would describe as singing. Both sound good, but I honestly think that the Ford/BMW sound better. Maybe it's because I think that GM cars should be as fast as they sound from the factory.

I find myself sometimes regretting buying the V. It's a fun car, but it requires more upgrades/tinkering than I would care to do on a car that cost 55k new. I sort of got misled when I bought it because nobody says anything bad about these cars except the usual reoccuring problems (rear diff, mounts, etc.). After driving the car for a month or two, I only enjoy the car when I'm driving it hard and even then it's not that fast - it's heavy and the factory tuning is just a shame. You really have to be willing to put money and time into this car to make it proper, and that's something I didn't anticipate and am not willing to do. I'm putting my new diff in this weekend and I already have the car listed for sale so if anybody wants a V with a new diff =)

kevm14
06-14-10, 05:42 PM
It looks like it'll be ~5 grand more for the equivalent E55, which isn't too bad. It's a nicer, more refined car, I am sure. But do you really think it will be more fun? Other than the M5, what vehicles are at the CTS-V's performance level with a manual trans? There are plenty that have nicer interiors, but they're regular cars...slow (relatively) and comfortable. It's all about trade-offs. And everyone has their preference. I still haven't driven a CTS-V but ironically, gravitated towards it because I was previously looking at a G8 GXP. Too expensive, not enough toys, even though the interior does look nicer. It has like zero features. I guess that would be called perspective.

repenttokyo
06-14-10, 05:47 PM
You can not make a W211 E-class spin out. ,....bla bla bla.....You really have to be willing to put money and time into this car to make it proper, and that's something I didn't anticipate and am not willing to do. I'm putting my new diff in this weekend and I already have the car listed for sale so if anybody wants a V with a new diff =)

i had a long reply written for this, but then i just erased it, because why bother. you can't change someone's prejudices. I can boil it down to this, tho: E55 = slushbox = automatic fail.

For the record, I have both a BMW 5 series and a V.

repenttokyo
06-14-10, 05:53 PM
also, calling the V heavy and then extolling the virtues of an E Class is hilarious. hell, even the 99 E55 weighed over 3,700 lbs. The W211 version is 4,200 lbs. 4,200 lbs!!!!

thebigjimsho
06-14-10, 09:40 PM
The V1 is an awesome car and is faster than the E39 M5. So talk all you want about the V not being as fast as it sounds, whatever.

2manycars
06-14-10, 10:16 PM
Ah geeze R4... was just going to let your post ride... but just couldn't. ;)

Have you looked close at a E55? A friend let me borrow his because I was seriously thinking of buying one. The interior is typical Benz, not that comfortable, and rather ugly. The traction control is intrusive/ overbearing, and it only comes with an automatic! The styling is not even close to a V... not even close. Sure it is fast... but a tune up alone will cost a fortune, and God help you if you need more than that. Just does not come close to a V... except for the power, and that's it.

JimmyH
06-14-10, 10:47 PM
I was previously looking at a G8 GXP. Too expensive, not enough toys, even though the interior does look nicer. It has like zero features. I guess that would be called perspective.

that's assuming you can find one. I searched within 750 miles of my house and did not find a listing for a single one.

c4ss
06-14-10, 11:03 PM
Automatic's FTL. That is more than enough to keep me away from the Merc. That and I don't see the fascination with Mercedes interior (or BMW interior for that matter). I mean ours isn't the greatest, but I don't think theirs are any better.

kevm14
06-15-10, 07:14 AM
I'm no interior snob, but let's be objective:

http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/EVOX/2003/Mercedes-Benz/2003.mercedes-benz.e-class.20170046-E.jpg

http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/EVOX/2003/Mercedes-Benz/2003.mercedes-benz.e-class.20170055-E.jpg

This is a 2003.

jrosevear
06-15-10, 08:12 AM
I think that the Germans also pay more attention to detail. American cars IMO are kind of rough and raw. I sit in my V and I hear the DVD nav player seeking and the fan going in the head unit.

Speaking as someone who drove BMWs for 12 years before dumping the last one and buying a V, the intimation that you can't hear stuff like this in a German car is nonsense. The design of the V's climate control system is kind of annoying -- why is the automatic system's default to run the AC at full blast when the car is first turned on? why can't I just get "vent" without temp control? -- but it's no louder than the one in my last BMW, and it heats and cools the car more quickly. And in the BMWs, you can hear all the little vent switches going buzz-buzz-whir behind the dash every time you switch something, never mind the CD player's noises.

Don't get me started on the the "German quality" brake rotors that need to be replaced -- not turned, they can't be turned, or so the dealers told us, *replaced* -- every 30k miles or less, the interior door panels on our old E36 that separated themselves from the door frames over and over, the "oh they all seem to do that" mysterious slow coolant loss that turned out to be a cracked cylinder head, and yeah, they did all do that, some after less than 100k miles... I could go on and on. Yeah, the peeling buttons in the V are kind of ridiculous -- classic GM boneheadedness, just like the driveline slop that's exactly like the clunking on my old 1990 ZR-1, my wife and I laughed in recognition the first time we drove one, "ah, GM" -- but I know I can put 200k miles on this car without going insane or bankrupt, and have an awful lot of fun along the way.

thebigjimsho
06-16-10, 09:47 PM
I'm no interior snob, but let's be objective:

http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/EVOX/2003/Mercedes-Benz/2003.mercedes-benz.e-class.20170046-E.jpg

http://www.edmunds.com/pictures/EVOX/2003/Mercedes-Benz/2003.mercedes-benz.e-class.20170055-E.jpg

This is a 2003.
Is that suppose to be nice? meh. If you want nice looking interiors, check with Audi.

kevm14
06-16-10, 10:01 PM
I am capable of admitting the E55's interior is nicer, even if I would never buy an E55 over a CTS-V.

thebigjimsho
06-16-10, 10:13 PM
I am capable of admitting the E55's interior is nicer, even if I would never buy an E55 over a CTS-V.
You are also capable of having bad taste. I never said anything about the V's interior...

JimmyH
06-17-10, 01:19 PM
the phone dial pad is a nice touch.

kevm14
06-17-10, 01:41 PM
You also have to remember this is a 2003, same as the CTS's interior. It's not like I'm showing you some 2009 Mercedes interior and comparing that way.

thebigjimsho
06-17-10, 06:41 PM
You also have to remember this is a 2003, same as the CTS's interior. It's not like I'm showing you some 2009 Mercedes interior and comparing that way.
And the new E63 is unflattering as well...

c4ss
06-18-10, 09:15 AM
Jim is NOT having it!

kevm14
06-18-10, 10:00 AM
Whatever. It's not my favorite interior, or the "world's best interior." But I think it's nicer than the first gen CTS.

JimmyH
06-18-10, 05:50 PM
I really liked the first gen interior, depending on the color. The brown/beige in my 06 CTS was very nice to look at (of course the wood trim helped too). The all black cavern in my 05 V was not. Maybe it was the dark color that made it look so cheap. Of course, many here know what I did to resolve it...

I still like the "computer tower" center stack design. Very well laid out. It seems to be angled perfectly so every button and knob is at a comfortable reach.

thebigjimsho
06-18-10, 06:47 PM
Jim is NOT having it!
http://rlv.zcache.com/damn_straight_tshirt-p235190952007741173trlf_400.jpg

JimmyH
06-19-10, 01:04 PM
bigjim is about open-minded as Archie Bunker

thebigjimsho
06-19-10, 03:40 PM
bigjim is about open-minded as Archie Bunker
I'm very open-minded. I just know when to shut it...








































wait, wut?

JimmyH
06-19-10, 03:47 PM
he has no lid upon his head, but if he did, you could look inside and see what's on his mind

DrJsl2008
09-09-10, 09:58 PM
I current have a first gen cts-v and I used to have a jaguar s-type r (somewhat comparable, 400hp import sport sedan). Maintenance on the ctsv has been incomparably easier on the V. On the jag I basically had to take it to the dealership for everything. I haven't run into anything on the V I couldn't do myself and usually I could find a part on ebay for next to nothing (just replaced the starter, 60 bucks brand new). I absolutely hate the shoddy build quality and lack of refinement on the V but I love everything else and when it comes time to upgrade I'll probably go with a second gen V and not another import.

I was wondering if I could get a comparison from you between the str and ctsv. I'm stuck between the two of them. Thanks!