When it was introduced to an eagerly awaiting public back in 1990, the BMW M5 was the fastest production sedan in the world. Thanks to its powerful, high-revving engine, it could race just about any car without risk of embarrassment. Despite this high claim to fame, it’s not the only reason the 1990 BMW M5 will be remembered. One of the major reasons was its unparalleled build quality; just like Ferrari or Lamborghini, all M5s were assembled entirely by hand, except for the body. This made these cars especially prized and appreciated, even for those who would not take advantage of its incredible speed.
In terms of performance, the 1990 BMW M5 was, for lack of better words, breath-taking. Powered by a normally-aspired 3.5-liter straight-six that produced 315 horsepower (boosted to 340 in 1992), it could achieve a artificially-limited top speed of 155 mph (248 km/h), and accelerate to 60 mph in less than 7 seconds.
The engine and aggressive look were hardly the only areas where the M5 distinguished itself from its fellow 5-Series BMW; it had an upgraded suspension to keep it on-track, and fatter, more effective disc brakes as well as a limited slip differential. The transmission was a standard five-speed manual, which was upgraded to a six-speed gearbox in 1994.