SPOTTED: BMW 550I MANUAL
A V8 5 Series with a rare and most PH-worthy feature (clue: it's not the 'Sepang Brass Metallic' paint)
Yes, this 550i is fitted with a manual gearbox. Would you like to guess how many SE-spec E60s there are with a 4.8-litre V8 and three pedals? 20 perhaps? Maybe just a dozen? Nope, according to howmanyleft.com, just three such 5 Series are registered in Britain.
Not only is this a phenomenally rare car in terms of numbers then, it's very seldom you see a luxurious BMW powered by such a driver-focused engine and transmission combo. This 550i, mechanically at least, is most comparable to an E39 M5. Whilst that car is subtle even by M standards, compared to the Sepang Brass 550 it looks like a touring car with its four exhausts and lowered stance. Even an equivalent 550i in M Sport spec would be noticeably more outlandish.
The potential for embarrassing others in this car is massive. Can you imagine the look on the face of a Porsche Boxster driver as you surge past in beige majesty?
Some may say this would be priceless, but here a price tag is attached, albeit a reasonable £19,895 one. Of course it isn't breaking news that large-engined exec saloons depreciate rapidly, but this BMW probably hasn't been helped by its unique colour specification and the stark reality of typical buyers preferring an automatic 'box.
And if you want a 350+bhp Q-car for under £20K but don't fancy the BMW? Have a look at the Jaguar XF S V8. No manual here, but the colour's better...
BMW 550i manual
Engine: 4,799cc V8
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Power (hp): 367@6,300rpm
Torque (lb ft): 361@3,400rpm
First registered: 2008
Recorded mileage: 39,900
Price new: £48,305 (standard 550i M Sport)
Yours for: £19,895
See the original advert here.