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5-Series (E12,E28, E34, E39, E60) Chat relating to the BMW 5-Series of all generations. Specific models include: BMW 518, BMW 520, BMW 520i, BMW 530i, BMW 528i, BMW 530i, BMW 518i, BMW 524d, BMW 525i, BMW 525e, BMW 528e, BMW 540i, BMW 535i, BMW 520d, BMW 525td, BMW 525d, BMW 530d, BMW 525i/xi, BMW 530i/xi. (BMW 5-Series Forum)

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Old 04-18-2005, 10:09 PM   #1 (permalink)
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If I purchase a 2002 530 or 540 without the sport package can I add the sport rims later? When I look at photos of cars with the sport rims and tires it looks much lower and sleeker, is this just in my mind or does the sport package suspension actually lower the car? Are there any other visual body differences that come with the sport package?

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Old 04-19-2005, 03:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Get one the one with the sport package. The difference between a non and one with a sport package is more than just tires. The car sits lower thanks different shocks & springs...

The ride is just a little stiffer/tighter but it's worth it!

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Old 04-20-2005, 01:20 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah, go for the sport package...there are plenty choices out there.
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Old 04-20-2005, 02:00 PM   #4 (permalink)
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the sport package includes larger rims, lower and stiffer suspension, and blackout trim around the windows rather than chrome. Interior trims also had different options. Some people believe that the sport package came with a different differential ratio. (Im not sure of this) but the sport package sure does FEEL quicker out of the hole in comparison to a non-sport, so it's quite possible.

Drive both... theres a lot of differences.

However, if you do decide to buy the non-sport, yes you can also lower it later, blackout your trim later, change the rims later, etc... it's the same car, just one comes with more performance-oriented parts "out of the box".

I find the sport package inadequate for ME however, so I'd buy the non-sport and mod it like crazy with aftermarket parts. I'm the kind who likes a super stiff ride, etc, etc.
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Old 04-20-2005, 08:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If you are willing to, purchase the nonsport package one (if cheaper) and put on better components such as aftermarket performance springs/shocks as well as a style of rim that you may prefer over the sport package one. There is always better!
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Old 04-20-2005, 08:31 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by rhammers@Apr 18 2005, 11:09 PM
If I purchase a 2002 530 or 540 without the sport package can I add the sport rims later? When I look at photos of cars with the sport rims and tires it looks much lower and sleeker, is this just in my mind or does the sport package suspension actually lower the car? Are there any other visual body differences that come with the sport package?

thanks all!
[snapback]334535[/snapback]
I think the sport package also provides a way-cooler steering wheel and shift knob (at least on my 1999 6-speed). BTW, if you can nab a 6-speed, then it will by definition come with the sport package as standard. All 6-speeds are sports, but only some automatics are.

I talked to an M5 owner the other day who mistakenly thought that the Sport package offered the same suspension as the M5. Not true - the Sport is sort of in-between the M5 and the standard suspension. But you are right, the sport is lower F&R, which makes the 40-series 17" (or is it 18" in 2002?) look better. In other words, it's WAY more than the rims, and there are lots of 5-ers for sale out there, so don't settle for anything less than a Sport...(IMHO)

Oh - and I think you are right about the automatic sport having a better axle ratio, although I don't know the numbers. The 6-speed has such a steep 1st gear in the box that they decided to leave the rear gear alone on that Sport model...
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Old 04-20-2005, 10:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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thanks so much guys, lots of great feedback here. I'm going to keep looking and hopefully fine the right one soon! I may drive some others, I think the 540 sport I drove just may have not been running well.
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Old 04-23-2005, 12:07 AM   #8 (permalink)
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sport package came with a limited slip 3.15 diff
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Old 04-23-2005, 01:55 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I had a friend that had a 528i (same generation) that did not have the sport package but had the 540i Sport package wheels... he ended up having to have the wheel bearings replaced TWICE because the aluminum suspension components are not designed to work with the wheels and tires, ect. Just a minor warning.
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Old 04-23-2005, 07:30 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by BimmerJD@Apr 23 2005, 12:55 AM
I had a friend that had a 528i (same generation) that did not have the sport package but had the 540i Sport package wheels... he ended up having to have the wheel bearings replaced TWICE because the aluminum suspension components are not designed to work with the wheels and tires, ect. Just a minor warning.
[snapback]336736[/snapback]
Sport package has the same suspension components with the exception of struts / springs. It is all aluminum as well. Sounds like he may have just had some bad luck as its not common on ANY car to have to replace wheel bearings frequently because of a larger wheel.

While on the topic of wheels, though - I'd like to add that if you add larger wheels later, you'll notice a bit of a slow down, MPG loss and loss of some braking power. The whole reason is rotational mass. It's not huge, but it's noticeable.
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Old 04-23-2005, 07:54 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Originally posted by aznplayaflavah@Apr 23 2005, 01:07 AM
sport package came with a limited slip 3.15 diff
[snapback]336714[/snapback]
This is not true, at least for 1999 540 with 6-speed & sport package.
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Old 04-24-2005, 12:11 AM   #12 (permalink)
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You're right, Eric, the 3:15 limited slip differential belongs to the E39 M5
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