Luxury, Class, Speed: Randy’s E60 M5
Randy’s love affair with his M5 began back in 2011 when he first acquired the car. When it came to making his decision on what car he wanted to build, the answer came rather easily. He considered the E90 M3, but felt that it was just a bit small for his taste, and the S65 bored him. He wanted a powerful sedan that could produce high strung yet manageable power, and he found that in the M5. The V10 added an enormous element of allure.
In its early stages, Randy’s car was still under warranty, so he didn’t want to jump straight into anything completely insane. He chose the Dinan Engineering S1 package to start. “I liked Dinan because it’s a very reputable company,” he explained. Also, with Dinan’s products, he wouldn’t be breaking his factory warranty.
The M5 ran with this S1 package for a period of time until the cherished BMW warranty came to an end. As he was no longer bound by the stipulations of a warranty, Randy decided it was time to delve into deeper modifications. These inevitably would bring the car to its current state. As time went on, he moved into a combination setup between Dinan and Evolve parts. Evolve came in with their tune, intakes, and headers to complement the original Dinan parts. “[The] combo proved to be a very good setup for street and was decent for track,” he said. However, after so many days at the track, he found himself wanting more from the car. He knew it could perform better. To compensate for what the M5 was missing on the track, Randy upgraded his suspension with Bilstein B16 coilovers. Also added to the mix were Dinan monoballs, a StopTech Trophy Kit, and an altered gear of a 3.91 LSD.
Randy’s goal was to essentially create a monster that could be held down. The whole idea of an M5 is to combine power with elegance, isn’t it? If you modify too much, at some point, part of the luxury is lost. With this car, the idea was to never compromise horsepower for comfort, or the other way around.
Fast forward to the present, and Randy has already attended a handful of the well known Shift S3ctor airstrip attacks. These events, if you aren’t familiar, are exactly what they sound like: fast cars roaring across an airstrip, chasing their low times and looking to dominate their opponents’ vehicles in both power and speed. Randy says that his first event was a huge adrenaline rush. He thoroughly enjoyed being able to push his car at wide open throttle and not risk getting arrested. However, his first event proved that his car had a thing or two to learn in the 1/2 mile stretch. “From [Shift S3ctor] I have added different mods to increase my power, such as headers, intakes, tune, wheels, and tires.” The bug had bitten him hard, and he was determined to build his car more for each following event. The trick was, however, to do so while maintaining the element of “purity” that the V10 heart possesses. Randy explains this in a very simplified manner: "I wanted to push the raw power of the M5 without adding supplemental power from forced induction—keep it true to its F1 roots.” In other words, NA was the only option.
At his most recent Shift S3ctor run, Randy was extremely successful. He was leaving competitors in the dust—one a 500hp R35 GTR, and another a 997 Turbo, to name a couple. After his victories (which were recorded via GoPro and are very exciting to watch), people began asking what all he had done to the car. Commenters suggested he was running with a stroker engine, but there’s no stroker to be found (yet). He credits his wins to an incredibly well balanced, sorted setup, but also his ability to launch the car efficiently.
While it’s obvious that the M5 is pushing some serious power, Randy has not had the car on a Dyno in quite some time. He estimates a production of around 520WHP. He can’t be too far off, seeing as his Shift S3ctor runs were victorious against 500 - 600WHP cars.
The current view of the M5’s engine bay is, as mentioned before, a mash up of Dinan and Evolve. The S85 powerplant is equipped with Dinan throttle bodies, Dinan under drive pulley, a CF front strut brace, Evolve long tubular headers, the Evolve Eventuri Intake, and the Evolve Stage 3 tune. All of these mods work in beautiful unison to enhance the performance of this hefty engine. One of Randy’s favorite aspects of the car, in his own words, is “how the BMW engineers were crazy enough to stuff an F1 inspired V10 engine into a four door family sedan.” When you put it like that, it does sound pretty ludicrous. Just think: this car could be driven to the office every morning, be used to pick up the kids from school, and then taken to the track to barrel around the course. All the while, it looks aggressively classy and sounds violently angry.
When all is said and done, Randy’s M5 is an incredibly well sorted build. Its design is unmistakably German, its sound is viciously exotic; and that speaks volumes to what a well balanced street and track car should be.