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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First time poster with a question for the crowd. I have a relatively low mileage 2002 M5 that I've had for a few years and use daily on my ~20 round trip mile commute in NJ. I love this car and take great care of it, although it is a true daily driver -- come winter I throw snows on it and it gets parked outdoors about 50% of the time in all seasons.

For some boring reasons beyond the scope of this discussion, I have two other vehicles -- an SUV and a little A4 -- available for hauling the family around (wife + kids 4 and 6 that a nanny cares for during the week). Because of this, a few weeks ago I realized that I almost-literally NEVER NEED the back seat of my M5. Coupled with a recent scream of a drive of my buddy's modded Gen 1 Miata, I got to thinking, why not trade into something a little smaller, a little more raw, and potentially a little more fun? Actually, it would have to be pretty awesome, because the M5 is already a lot of fun.

So that's the question: would you recommend a used Cayman S (to be used daily as I use the M now) over the M? The M is a special car: refined, powerful, stealthy... I do love it dearly, but change can be good, and the car is close to a decade old with big repair bills looming if any major system breaks. No, I haven't driven a Cayman. That obviously has to happen asap but looking for opinions ahead of that -- especially from those who've made similar trades, or who've owned an e39 M5 in the past. And please no cracks about selling the A4 instead. It's not an option. Thanks in advance for your thoughts.
 

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you need to do a long road test in one
 

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Simply speaking - yes.

But these are two very different vehicles and are at odds for direct comparison. You've answered your own question - go and drive a cayman S and you will know if you can handle the squeeze in and out and whether or not a tingle goes up your spine as you hit 6000 rpm in 2nd. For me the choice is an easy one.

I felt I had to reply to this as I had an experience with an M5 driver who span out in front of me and ended up unconscious over the steering wheel smashed into the central reservation. The only thing he said when he came to was "I shouldn't of switched the traction control off!" Not relevent to the original post but amusing considering nothing but pride was hurt.
 

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The BMW is like a hot chocolate drink, smooth, silky, gets you there does the job.
The Porsche is like a Short Expresso, a little harder to get into but gives you a wakeup call, gets the blood pumping. You'll soon be wanting more.
Whats your flavour?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I felt I had to reply to this as I had an experience with an M5 driver who span out in front of me and ended up unconscious over the steering wheel smashed into the central reservation. The only thing he said when he came to was "I shouldn't of switched the traction control off!" Not relevent to the original post but amusing considering nothing but pride was hurt.
Funny (not really but you know what I mean) because when I put the question to the BMW boards I mentioned something about the car being too fast, i.e. having the similar fun in the M as I was in the Miata would have me at much higher, potentially unsafe speeds. So I guess another way to pose the question is, at similar levels of speed/safety/prudence, does the Cayman provide significantly more enjoyment/involvement/driving fun/whatever-you-want-to-call-it? Sounds like you guys say yes.
 

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The BMW is like a hot chocolate drink, smooth, silky, gets you there does the job.
The Porsche is like a Short Expresso, a little harder to get into but gives you a wakeup call, gets the blood pumping. You'll soon be wanting more.
Whats your flavour?
Great analogy.

--

A Cayman is all about near perfect steering, road/tire feel transmitted through the steering wheel and the seat, plus the auditory scream of the engine behind your head. Yet at the same time the car is no Lotus Elise. A Cayman has all the modern comforts, and technical savvy of today's best mass produced cars. You could even say it can be luxurious with leather trim options and the various interior options Porsche offers.

You really need to go drive one and then decide if it has the characteristics you enjoy.

FWIW I'm never bored in my CS. The car is a constant adrenaline rush. Perfect most of the time, though there are times when it is not the ideal car. When the roads are covered in ice and gravel, long trips on pothole covered roads, driving into the city, etc. I prefer something more sedate, less worrisome should I have an accident or the car be vandalized. The solution is a second car, which I see you already have.
 

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you need to do a long road test in one
+1 I have 07 CS and E90 M3 (which I see as the successor to the E39M that I wanted and couldn't afford back then) and often drive both in the same day. Both are a real pleasure to drive. The CS steering response and balance are superb. You will give up some power, but get a lot of handling.
If you appreciate the M5, you will most likely appreciate the attributes of the CS.
 

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They really are different beasts, but excellent in their own way. Make no mistake, the Cayman is a sports car, not a sports sedan, but many of us find it to be a comfortable and practical daily driver - even year round with the right winter tires.
 

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They really are different beasts, but excellent in their own way. Make no mistake, the Cayman is a sports car, not a sports sedan, but many of us find it to be a comfortable and practical daily driver - even year round with the right winter tires.
Yes....here in Florida the "right" winter tires are max performance summer! ;)

I use my CS as a daily driver and it makes the daily commute a hoot instead of a chore....but I suspect the commute in an M5 is not a chore. My opinion is using a Cayman as a daily driver does have implications. The car has a low front end that is highly susceptible to road debris so a clear bra is highly recommended unless you want to re-spray periodically. I suspect the on-going maintenance costs for Porsche vs BMW are comparable although the tire life on the rear tires on my CS is about 12000 miles. Literally speaking....your mileage may vary.
 

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They really are different beasts, but excellent in their own way. Make no mistake, the Cayman is a sports car, not a sports sedan, but many of us find it to be a comfortable and practical daily driver - even year round with the right winter tires.
Sounds like poster is ready to try a real sports car, so I'm encouraging him to go for it. Never had an M5 but did have a pretty nice S4 and now a 2008 WRX STI as my daily drive. My new Cayman S is sooooooooo nice and beats all these others hands down for "pure" driving pleasure! :):)
 

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Dear AgWagon,

The title of this thread, and your post accentuates your love and appreciation for what you have. Why mess with that?

Personally, I think you are suffering from "the-grass-is-greener-on-the-other-side-of-the-fence syndrome, which is stealing away the pleasure of what you admitting love and enjoy already.

I suggest not making life more painful or difficult that it has to be. You are lucky that you love and appreciate what you already have. Open a bottle of wine, sit back, relax. Be at peace with what already is....or you will never be.
 

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I've had a series of BMWs in my garage for close to twenty years, including a few Mcars. I have always loved the way they drive and still do. I found that my last Mcar (E46 M3) was pretty boring at anything but highly extralegal speeds and was looking for something that would be enjoyable to drive while allowing me to maintain my driving privileges. The CS fills the bill. It is high entertainment at any speed. It is a bit rawer than a BMW, but it feels a lot more special. You really need to drive one.
 

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Dear AgWagon,

The title of this thread, and your post accentuates your love and appreciation for what you have. Why mess with that?

Personally, I think you are suffering from "the-grass-is-greener-on-the-other-side-of-the-fence syndrome, which is stealing away the pleasure of what you admitting love and enjoy already.

I suggest not making life more painful or difficult that it has to be. You are lucky that you love and appreciate what you already have. Open a bottle of wine, sit back, relax. Be at peace with what already is....or you will never be real.
But sometimes the grass really is greener on the other side!!! :dance:
 

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The BMW is like a hot chocolate drink, smooth, silky, gets you there does the job.
The Porsche is like a Short Expresso, a little harder to get into but gives you a wakeup call, gets the blood pumping. You'll soon be wanting more.
Whats your flavour?
Well said.:cheers: Espresso shots.

+1 on the long test drive

Very different cars. The 5 series family of cars has always been one of the best on the planet, IMO. Great all-arounders. A Cayman is definitely more "purpose built".

We would have a definitive answer for you if we had a picture of your nanny. That would tell us how dangerously you like to live.:eek:
 

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So I guess another way to pose the question is, at similar levels of speed/safety/prudence, does the Cayman provide significantly more enjoyment/involvement/driving fun/whatever-you-want-to-call-it? Sounds like you guys say yes.
No question about that. So you need to decide if that is what you really want. I get my "sedan fix" when I rent cars for work. The other day I had a Challenger. The base V6 model. It was a pleasant change for the day.
 

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But sometimes the grass really is greener on the other side!!! :dance:
Certainly what you say is true. So true that it may repeat at the next fence after that; and then be true at the next, and.....then we die and "head for greener pastures". Can't win this one I guess; unless, like me, you end-up in a place with a lot of orange.

But, I hear it's a brighter orange on the other-side that sharply jagged rock...

Edited to add: My apologies for hijacking the thread. Just ummm adding a little color.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
At a min, you guys seem like a great bunch of fun. Also, lot's more balance to the responses vs. the bias I expected (and got on the BM boards in the other direction). Kudos.

I need to drive one, which I hope to do soon but can't this week. Will report back as soon as possible... if you care. Many thanks.
 
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