I am Teh Edumacator.
Join Date: May 2005
Location: ATL, London, and Barcelona
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Yes, the E39's maintenance will be more pricey, but the car is mature enough at this point that all the maintenance items you should worry about are clearly defined.
The driving experience will be much better in the E39 than in the Nissan.
I think you'll find the price tag for the E39 to be lower than you quote. Prices on E39's have been coming down precipitously in the last six months or so.
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1999 E39 540i/6-VF Stage 1 S/C, Dinan exhaust, Dinan strut+shock braces, Dinan ltwt flywheel + clutch, Dinan Brembo BBK, Dinan monoball, H&R Springs, Koni Yellows, M5 sways, Dinan forged 18" wheels, &c.
1995 E38 740i. Highly modded. Faster than you.
Sold 2-28-07: 1997 E36 M3/4, 8-30-05 RIP 1997 528i
Lindsay fan club member.