BMW 540i

In 1993 BMW added a 4.0 liter V8 to the 5 Series lineup of its cars available in both sedan and touring models and labelled the BMW 540i. Its large engine with upgraded brakes and 5 speed automatic transmission or rare optional 6 speed transmission made it very competitive in the sports sedan market around the globe. Only 3203 BMW 540i 6 x speed transmission were produced with one particular model, the HE98 South African made Limousine which was made in Rosslyn, South Africa for the local and African market.

These packages included not only a firmer suspension and sport seats, but also used many parts from the M5. Only 204 Sport models were built and 139 were fitted with a 6 x speed manual gearbox.

Only 32 of these cars were built, all with a manual transmission. Australia was the final market that received one of the M-Sport 1995 540i 6 speeds gearboxes. Only 70 BMW 540i Manual Limited Editions were ever produced and were all manual and individually numbered. The cars also came with M5 interiors and the "throwing star" M-System II wheels. One thing they did not come with were the Motorsport S38 engine or body kit.

The M5 version of the E34 was produced from 1988 to 1995. It featured a S38 straight-6 cylinder engine, originally a 3.6 L with an output of 232 kW or 311 Hp and was later upgraded to a 3.8 litre engine capacity which was capable of producing 250 kW or 335 Hp.

In its last year of production, it also sported the smooth six speed manual gearbox that had been taken from BMW 540i E34 which then followed through to the next generation of 5 series cars, the BMW E39 series. The M5 was outfitted with 17 and 18-inch (460 mm) alloy wheels along with a modified suspension.

A few enhancements to the body's cosmetics and functionality, as well as engine and transmission evolutions, have appeared throughout its years of production. Among those, BMW's VANOS technology made its first appearance in the M50 2.5 litre engines built in 1992 and have since been employed in most modern engines.

The E34 BMW 530i and 540i both shared the M60 engine, which used Nikasil electro-plated cylinder bore linings. The bores were susceptible to premature engine wear, as high sulphur content in petrol in many markets across the globe had a high content of sufur which resulted in deterioration of the linings, often prone to scratching, chipping and flaking. BMW / Kolbenschmidt introduced the one-piece Alusil engine block and cylinders, an alloy blend of metals which included a small percentage of silicon.

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1992–1996 BMW 540i - 4.0 L M60B40 V8 engine producing 210 kW or 282 Hp

1994–1995 BMW 540i - 4.0 L M60B40 V8 engine producing 282 Hp or 210 kW

1996–1998 540i - 4.4 L M60B44 V8 engine producing 213 kW or 286 Hp

1998–2003 540i - 4.4 L M62TUB44 V8 engine producing 216 kW or 290 Hp

1998–2003 540i - 4.4 L M62TUB44 V8 engine producing 290 Hp or 216 kW