It all depends on the car, and your luck!
At that stage (year and mileage), the car would have needed, OR needs many replacement parts for wear and tear. Examples are O2 sensors, brakes, MAF sensor, water pump, radiator, electronics, control arm bushings, hoses, and the list goes on.
If you are lucky, OR smart enough to buy one that has been well taken care of, where the owner has done whatever was needed, then you actually have a good reliable car with many new parts and lots of miles to go!
If on the other hand, you buy one that has been owned by a "car-abuser", you will be suffering for a while until you get everything fixed.
The E39 is a reliable car and will probably give you over 200k miles of enjoyment.
Last edited by CosmosBlack; 02-21-2006 at 11:31 PM.