With it´s timeless lines and understated styling the 2001 M5 I shot last weekend, this car might seem like nothing special to most people. Other people know that this black 4-door saloon is a wolf in sheep´s clothes by just looking at the 4 exhaust tips at the back and the other subtle styling hints that tells you this is one of Bavaria´s finest.
But there is more to the E39 M5 than meets the eye. Unlike its predecessors, the E39 M5 was not hand built at the BMW M GmbH factory. In order to increase production, it was produced on the same assembly line as the normal E39 5-series at the Dingolfing factory in Germany.
In fact, the E39 M5 was almost not built at all; BMW believed that the 210 kW 540i was powerful enough, but when Jaguar released the 272 kW XJR, and Mercedes-Benz introduced the W210 E55, which had over 260 kW BMW responded to the competition with a 294 kW (400 PS; 394 bhp) M5.
The car you see pictured here was taken out of winter storage to have these pictures shot. I have recently fallen in love with my 50mm lens and used it for most of the exterior shots. Unfortunately I do not have a polarization filter for it, and the pictures are suffering from that. The reflections from the sky and white snow is really something I wish I could have avoided.
Even though this car spends most of the winter tucked away in a garage, it´s shod with 18″ snow tires over some classic BBS LM rims that really suits the car. Winter tires or not, the powerful V8 had no problem sending the car sideways on the snow, and I managed to snap this picture of the owner having some fun just before we left.
Check out more shots of the M5 over at flickr by visiting this link