YouTuber Declares M5 Competition the Ultimate Sleeper
Ultra-high tech M5 may be too much for some, but the hardest hardcore 5 Series is the best supercar with a backseat ever.
Ever since the first M5 arrived in 1984, more than a few drivers have had to look upon their rearview mirrors in case the high-performance BMW rolled up on them before blasting by on their left into the horizon.
The train of hits hasn’t stopped with the F90 era of the M5, either. YouTuber Mark Sanevski (a.k.a. savagegeese) recently gave a thorough review of the 2019 M5 Competition to answer the question of whether or not the monster of monsters has the power to back up its hefty price tag.
“Back in my twenties, the M5 had major mystique,” said Sanevski, “and that is primarily because of the BMW films with Clive Owen. Watching him tear that car around made me want one so badly. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve driven every single iteration, and now, we have this: the F90. When I first saw the sticker price on this, the one that I’m driving, at $132,000, I almost choked on my own tongue.”
Sanevski adds that without options like carbon ceramic brakes and the Bowers & Wilkins sound system, the base price for the M5 Competition is just $110,000. Either way, that hefty bag of cash “better do some serious driving,” and then some to justify the cost.
“The refinement, the comfort, the massaging seats, the soft-close doors. There is so much creature comforts in here that it is one of the most confusing sports cars I’ve ever been in,” said Sanevski. “Granted, this is trying to be that sports sedan, and in the sports sedan market, this does not have that many competitors. Once you start to wrap your head around how insane the performance is, you want to know that for this money you’re gonna be able to utilize this every day.”
As far as the luxury goes for the M5 Competition, Sanevski says the very adjustable front buckets are more on the sportier side, and might need some breaking-in before they’re comfortable for long trips. Meanwhile, the cabin is quiet as is expected for a luxury sedan, but the complex electronics may be too much to handle for some.
On the bright side, though, the light display — whose vibe Sanevski describes as “some type of Russian dance club” — will have drivers and passengers alike in awe, giving the uber M5 a specialness not found in lesser cars. And he gives the Bowers & Wilkins sound system high praise for both its sound quality and its placement, all worth the $3,000 price tag.
“You have a full, double-wishbone suspension, all-aluminum componentry — lower control arms, the fork — the knuckle is massive. Your upper A-arm is aluminum, and it is all stamped with ‘M’ on it, so you know that these are M-specific suspension parts,” said Sanevski. “It’s rich and meaty, and you also have adjustable dampers that are electronically controlled.”
The M5 Competition also has a lower stance than the regular M5, thicker anti-roll bars at both ends mounted on more rigid mounts, and more rigid engine mounts for improved steering feedback. The whole affair was setup to be more aggressive, all capped by the optional carbon ceramic brakes, which are $8,500 to add, but are $18,256 before labor to replace. Thus, according to Sanevski, those who track the Competition “better have a least 20 to 30 grand set aside for consumables.”
“There is no humanly way that any person is gonna work on this,” Sanevski says upon seeing the tight, plastic-covered engine bay holding the 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 linked to an eight-speed automatic with torque converter. “There’s literally no space to work on anything. There is just an insane amount of engine in this compartment. This is a vehicle that you are never gonna work on yourself. This has to be the true epitome of a lease-only car.”
Sanevski adds that the way the M5 Competition was built is counterintuitive to how sports cars are usually made. Instead of adding lightness, the hyper M5 follows the “more is less” formula. That said, he says anyone who buys the Competition must treat the sedan “as though you’re buying a supercar,” as the F90 version is more advanced than the M5 was a decade ago, from electronics and the all-wheel drive system, to the engine and suspension.
“This car is basically the Hellcat with a master’s degree,” said Sanevski’s passenger Jack Singapore during their drive around the outskirts of town. “It is the Hellcat devoid of fun, unfortunately. If you are an utter goon, there is fun to be had. It’ll go sideways. It’ll overrun and makes great noises, but at the same time, it lacks the sense of humor of the Hellcat. It takes itself really seriously.”
Singapore adds that the M5 Competition’s mission isn’t to be a lunatic on the street or track like the Hellcat Charger, but to be the daily of a man or woman making CEO money who already has a track-day terror in their garage. Plus, the quality of materials and the ride of the M5 is still leagues away better than the Hellcat, all in, as Sanevski says, “a quiet, sedate, comfortable package” that one can drive like a beast if they wanted.
“When you talk about M-cars, specifically the M5 when they throw a Competition badge on it, there’s only so much you can do with a vehicle like this on the street,” Sanevski said. “It is so ridiculously fast that I wanted to take it out on track not really to set any times, but to kind of explore the more ridiculous side of its handling and, of course, the straight-line acceleration.”
As far as the steering goes, Sanevski wasn’t too happy with the numb, “synthetic” feel, no matter what mode the M5 Competition is in. He does add that most people who buy the car aren’t going to want to muscle the wheel, again going back to its mission of being a daily high-performer. The handling, on the other hand, is a blessing, especially for how big the M5 is, and the straight-line acceleration is as immense as the sedan’s weight.
“This is a massive technical achievement for BMW,” said Sanevski. “Not only is the mechanical engineering amazing, the drivetrain, the electronic programming, the overall ride, and just everything to do with performance is staggering. Every single person that got into this, regardless of skill level, felt extremely comfortable driving it fast, and that is very hard to do.”