Today’s Nice Price or No Dice 540i offers BMW’s first-ever V8 in a 5 Series, which is celebrated by an extra-wide twin-kidney grille. It offers a five-speed stick, too, and a lot of miles to top it off. Let’s see if its price is worth celebrating.
Yesterday’s 1961 Ford Falcon sedan may not have been the most exciting or iconic edition of FoMoCo’s classic OG compact, but it was a pretty nice-looking car nonetheless. Its $16,500 asking price did not seem to be a very exciting proposition either. Interestingly, that would actually be a bargain if taken at the Falcon’s original as-new price of $1,974 (barring options), which, when inflation is taken into account, would come in today at a cool $20,320.25. Bargain or not, too few of you were willing to go with the Falcon’s asking, and the car fell in a narrow 55 percent No Dice loss.
This 540i is factory-kitted as close to perfect as one could want, what with its 3982cc DOHC M60 V8 and a Getrag five-speed stick. That combo offers 282 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, the latter spec rivaling that of the slightly smaller S38 in the contemporary M5.
According to the ad, the V8 in our candidate car likely makes more owing to a flashed ECU and freer-flowing exhaust. It all gets down to business through what the seller says is a Dinan LSD.
Other of the car’s attractions include 18-inch M Parallel alloys on the exterior and leather-wrapped sport seats and steering wheel in the interior. The seller touts the car having lived most of its existence in California, which hence makes it rust-free, something I imagine is a big deal to prospective buyers on the East Coast and in the Midwest. Despite being road rot-free, the bodywork is claimed by the seller to be in only fair shape, saying it suffers from some minor paint chips and scratches. To be honest, it looks pretty good in the pictures, so it’s likely the black paint is hiding the worst of the offenders.
Things seem better in the cabin, with no appreciable wear and tear evident. The black leather and burl wood trim exudes stately simplicity with only an aftermarket stereo monkeying with the experience. That interior’s condition is all the more amazing when the car’s remarkable 219,000-mile odometer reading is taken into account. That’s a buttload for any car, and especially so for one with a first-generation all-alloy engine under the hood. As noted earlier, though, there is less to go wrong on these than on the later 5 Series.
Not everything on the car is wrung out factory-fitted, however. The seller says the car comes with Bilstein struts and shocks along with H&R springs. It also comes with a clean title and what’s claimed to be an “extensive service history.” The reason given for the sale is the seller’s desire for an SUV and the need to clear out garage space for that less-satisfying replacement. To take the Bimmer off the present owner’s hands requires an outlay of $16,500, which, as noted, is the same amount that was asked for yesterday’s Ford.
What do you think, is this a better deal than yesterday’s Falcon? Or is that $16,500 price tag just as cursed on this 540i?
H/T to Allen Pinkerton for the hookup!
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