Originally Posted by sterile stork
Looking damn fine! What was your method of attack? Acquire the metal (and plastic front bumper) body pieces, mount, paint front-end? Or did you have them rack painted and then mount? Did the hood get a respray? I'm currently trying to plan this out for myself. Thanks!
Also--what's your current wheel setup? Looks nicely filled out.
This car was originally custom-ordered and delivered to Oxnard, CA and registered in a "corporate fleet", which I suspect was actually BMWUSA, LLC, given all the options that the car had. BMW is based there and I see them driving upcoming models around in camouflage all the time. After only six months, the wagon was re-sold to a VP at Xerox back in PA (who left all of her driving destinations on the nav, LoL).
So the front end had plenty of rock chips. Nevermind "sanding" the roads in winter... seems like they used aggregate pebbles! A complete repaint of the hood had to happen, which it did. I also replaced the windshield and sanded/polished the headlights (which came out great, especially after applying a clear bra film).
I trolled eBay for months looking for a decent used M5 front end, regardless of color. I just wasn't seeing anything worthwhile... they would all require quite a bit of plastic work. Plus their cost and the cost of shipping was prohibitive for the end value.
Then I stumbled upon ECS's listing for a brand new oem E60 front end, primed and ready to go, and thankfully, with the side reflector delete, which is normal for the oem bmw replacements, for some reason.
Given that I had to ship the oem M5 front bumper out west, I used the opportunity to order the new larger oem parts I needed to complete the install, such as the M5 carrier, styrofoam, and wheel well liners, which were all added to the front end box. This really saved on shipping.
Grill, ducts, fasteners and some other bits came from minibmwpartsstore.
This all wasn't cheap, mind you, but it was the right way to go for me, to guarantee good results once done.
I acquired original M5 front fenders in two batches on eBay. Actually one pair and then a single, as I knew that one of the fenders in the pair wouldn't pass muster.
I bought new side vents and covered the "M5" logo with black tape for now. I intend to clean-up and customize the side vents that came with the fenders to see if I like the look.
The front end and fenders were painted off the car while the hood was getting prepped and painted, all by a local outfit that does insurance work for bmw and mb. There are better painters out there, yet at much higher prices. Since the car is white and a driver, I had a budget. I am happy with how it came out, even with some imperfections. Good warranty, which I have already called them on for one little flaw (just had to wet sand a lump of clear and re-buff).
The entire front end was installed by a european auto repair friend, at his clean shop, on a lift (my shop is clogged with dirty tractors and industrial gear). Fit is pretty good. Given that this car has the Xdrive subframe, the entire M5 bottom plastic assembly either has to be adapted, or you have to merge parts from the M-Sport. We had to be a little creative with mounting, but it turned out well.
I employed the lower black spoiler as more of a guard, to keep me from ramming curbs and stuff. It drags here and there, which is fine. It is meant to sacrifice against all of those mean aprons! LoL I now run a front camera from BimmerTech, so the front spoiler might come off.
Wheels are VMR V710FF
Front: 19x9.5 ET:33
Rear: 19x10 ET:25
Tires are Michelin Pilot Super Sport
Front: 255/40ZR19 (100Y) XL
Rear: 285/35ZR19 (103Y) XL