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BMW's M5 was a simple concept: a production 5 Series saloon re-developed for high performance by the Motorsport division. The M5 was the car that really initiated the legend of the M-cars from BMW. The letter M has been applied to a high-performance BMW as early as 1978, but that year's M1 was an exotic supercar. It had the right image, but the M1 was never going to bring in major profits. The M5 was much simpler in concept. It was and remains a production 5 Series saloon, redeveloped for ultra-high performance. Manufacturing costs were minimized, allowing BMW to price the car more attractively and still bring in healthy profits.
Author: James Taylor
Publisher: The Crowood Press UK
Illustrations: 211 color photos