2004 BMW 520i ES SE Touring Auto (E39)


  • Super stylish BMW E39 Touring fitted with a straight 6 petrol engine
  • Great ES SE specification including 17-inch split rim alloy wheels, dechromed exterior, internal aluminium trim and anthracite headlining
  • Practical Touring configuration with current ULEZ compliance

The Appeal

The 4th generation 5-series, also known as the E39, is widely considered to be one of the best cars BMW ever made. Superbly built and with a sophisticated understated styling that embarrasses BMW’s current offerings, the E39 broke new ground when launched in 1995 and in the years since has continued to consolidate its reputation as a high watermark for BMW.

Offered here for auction is an extremely late E39 Touring, coming literally from the last few weeks of production. Fitted with the later and more powerful M54 engine capable of delivering 170 BHP, this particular example is also in fabulous ES SE trim specification and therefore features a number of great factory fitted items, such as 17-inch split rim alloy wheels, a dechromed exterior and dark anthracite headlining.

As far as estate cars are concerned, it doesn’t get much cooler than an E39 Touring. A black-on-black example fitted with one of the more sensible engine options, this 520i exudes early 00’s style yet is still able to offer reasonable running costs and ULEZ compliance - fantastisch as the Germans would say!

The History and Paperwork

  • V5 present
  • MOT valid until 10/08/2024 with no advisories noted
  • 4 former keepers
  • 94,933 miles
  • Supplied with some original BMW documentation and wallet
  • Benefiting from a recent service in January 2023
  • Collection of invoices relating to previously undertaken service work

The Interior

  • Starting with an excellent driving position and a focused uncluttered dashboard, the E39 interior in our opinion is peak modern classic BMW
  • Dark leather interior seats presenting in a nicely supple and undamaged condition, a testament to the quality of BMW interiors of this era and complemented by matching carpets with over mats
  • Dark anthracite headlining as offered in the ES SE specification, presenting in a good condition and free of any sagging.
  • We note some loosening of the fabric over the interior aspect of both A-pillars, however would anticipate this to be a fairly straightforward fix if so desired
  • Lovely brushed aluminium trim which both lifts the interior and adds to the sporting feel of the cabin
  • Interior equipment including dual zone air conditioning, cruise control and electric windows all reported to be operating as expected
  • Full length cargo space cover and rubber boot mat with retracting net divider 

The Exterior

  • Presented in a purposeful shade of metallic black complemented very nicely by an original set of 17-inch split rim alloy wheels
  • De-chromed exterior of this ES SE model further adding to a sporting appearance
  • A later facelift model, this E39 Touring features the M5 type kidney grill, angel eye headlights and revised taillights with LED running lights
  • Looking over the exterior condition of the car, the paint and bodywork could be described as being commensurate with its age and mileage. At the front there are the anticipated stone chips and  an area of damage over the offside aspect of the bumper. 
  • Additionally there appears to be some minor bubbling over the front and rear aspect of the offside sill
  • External trim appears complete apart from the loss of the nearside wingmirror arm cover
  • External lights and glass appear complete and correct with some noted hazing to the nearside headlamp unit and rear hatch light clusters

The Mechanics

  • Fitted with BMW’s M54 2171cc 6 cylinder petrol engine, here mated to a 5 speed automatic box driving the rear wheels
  • Generally considered to be one of the best built classic BMW models, the E39 enjoys a reputation for good general mechanical reliability
  • Renowned for their dynamic ability, the E39 features a significantly stiffer chassis than its predecessor and was also the first BMW model to be primarily supplied with rack and pinion steering
  • Serviced January 2023 with work including spark plug replacement, oil and oil filter change, air filter and pollen filter change and rear brake pad replacement
  • Replacement of heater resistor, also January 2023
  • Service documentation confirms fitment of a replacement engine by BMW in 2008
  • Out and about the owner reports the BMW drives well, pulling smoothly under acceleration and braking cleanly when required


An undeniable modern classic, the E39 Touring is a super stylish estate heralding from a golden era for BMW. Presented in a great specification of black over black with desirable 17-inch split rim alloy wheels, this particular example would undoubtedly make for a chic practical daily driver.


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Vehicle specification
  • Year 2004
  • Make BMW
  • Model 5 Series 520i
  • Colour Black
  • Odometer 94,933 Miles
  • Engine size 2171
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Town Redbridge
  • Location Essex
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
9 bids from 4 bidders
  • tick_lo•••• £2,200 02/10/23
  • colinba•••• £2,000 02/10/23
  • tick_lo•••• £1,800 02/10/23
  • colinba•••• £1,500 02/10/23
  • tick_lo•••• £1,400 02/10/23
  • colinba•••• £1,000 30/09/23
  • tf2000m•••• £800 30/09/23
  • colinba•••• £500 30/09/23
  • malcolm•••• £100 29/09/23

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