I bought an 06 BMW M5 in May with 68,000 miles. On the drive home, the oil cooler broke and started leaking oil. That was a $1500 repair, an addition to the money I just spent purchasing the car and approximately $1000 in taxes. A few weeks later, the passenger restraint malfunction showed up. The battery cable had to be replaced. I spent nearly $1000 on that particular issue, maybe more. Shortly after, I began to get transmission malfunctions, as well as engine malfunctions which placed the car in limp mode. I spent $7000 fixing the transmission problems and just a few months later, I'm having problems again. I've lost $15,000 this year because of the M5 and I'm done.
This is an incredible sports sedan, lots of power at very high RPM's, I'm still in the break-in period, so I have not pushed it that far yet. I'm a little disappointed the launch control that had been advertised is not available in the U.S. overall I'm very happy with this vehicle, if you consider purchasing this vehicle remember there is a reason why there is a $3,700.00 gas guzzler tax, this car drinks it.
The new BMW M5 has a substantially different character than the previous model: less low rpm torque, but more mid and high range power. Using the SMG transmission well is like learning an action video game or how to tango with a new dance partner. Once you've got the rhythm and the timing, it's a great transmission, but this may take 5,000-10,000 miles. That's why reviewers tend not to like it. Same with iDrive. It's clunky for tuning different radio stations, but very handy otherwise, once you've learned how to use it. Unlike with the Editor's M5 Review, I find the steering to be very good and much better than on my prior model M5. What's not good: fuel economy and driving range.
Having driven BMW's for 39 years I can attest that this V10 is the state of the art in performance in a thoughtful, safe and understated sports car. It's like will not be seen again. I have had two of these - the E39 and the E60.
Delivered October 2005 on the first shipment to the US, I'm at over 25,000 miles. The iDrive and SMG take some time to get used to - really about 5,000 miles or so. Once you get the hang of the SMG, it is just a blast. I never tire of revving this engine, especially on downshifts. The power is just astounding, especially on the highway - there are only a few cars sold today that compare. I've put on lightweight BBS 20" rims and Michelin PS2 tires, and installed H&R springs and spacers. With these mods, the car handles like a go-kart, but still rides well enough to take 5 people out to dinner. If you're looking for a Porsche that seats 5 people, this is your car. Amazing!