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OK ... get comfy ... here we go:<p>I flew into 'Jersey (from Florida)to sign the paperwork and check-out the beast before putting it on a carrier to ship back to Flordia (I also had business in the NY area, so the trip wasn't just for paperwork). After signing the paperwork and getting the delivery tutorial, I wanted to take my new toy for a spin. Not a minute into the drive I had made my decision: I wasn't letting this car out of my hands for a minute ... that's right ... I decided to cancel the carrier, cancel my plane ticket ... cancel my meetings ... and drive this masterpiece of a car home to Florida. <p>This car is simply amazing (Silver/Charcoal, K2a, 19 miles on the clock @ delivery)in both looks and performance. I now firmly disagree with those who have commented on the "overly sensitive touch" one needs to launch the E55 at normal speeds: there is no such sensitivity. The pedal feel is perfect: not to light, not to heavy. <p>The ride is much less harsh than I had expected as matter of fact, it is darn near luxurious. When you hit a bump, you feel it, but it doesn't make you say 'ouch'. The ridgid body and the suspension just soakes it up and disipates the harshness.<p>Through the snow-flurries in Delaware and Maryland, and the pre-Christmas traffic in Virginia, the only pain in the neck was varying my speed to comply with the break-in process. I would pull over occasionally for coffee, but it was really an excuse to thumb through one of the seven owner's manuals and check out the next set of features I would play with over the next few hours (you must get the 'Voice Activated Phone' option [K2a]... it not only allows you to use the phone hands-free, but you can also use the Radio/CD/Cassette via voice commands as well ... "CD #6 ... Track 5", or "Radio ... frequency 95.5" ... then Bam, you've got it playing, all without taking your hands off the wheel!!!). <p>The ride was an absolute pleasure and quite uneventfull until an hour from my destination. Throughout the entire ride my thoughts continued to drift (in between using voice commands to change tracks on my Sinatra CD and using the voice activated Timeport telephone that came installed and activated) to the time when I would eventually meet up with an M5. <p>Well, 26 hours after delivery, with one hour left in my trip, I was cruising I-75 down the west-coast of Florida at a leisurly 80 mph (I now had approximately 940 miles on the clock). It was about 6:30 pm and the sun had just set. In my rearview I could see Zenon's cutting through the slower traffic and approaching rapidly. When the Zenon's got to my back bumer they just stopped, and slowly came along side. I glanced over and saw a BMW. In an instant the BMW began to pull away. It was like the God's were giving me my wish ... my E55 had gone through its break-in period ... the road ahead was clear of cars (and hopefully troopers) ... and then the emblem on the right-rear-trunk lid came into focus ... M5. <p>I don't even remember the concious thought, but my right-foot just went to the floor. Within an instant I was on the M5's ass. I let off my gas pedal. I could see the rear of the M5 suddenly tuck down ("down-shifting" I thought), I gave it a nano-second to be sure he was excelerating , and I floored it again. " OH MY GOD " I thought as my whole body felt the gutteral-bubbling coming from underneath the front of my beast as it literally shot forward with seemingly unending thrust ... for the first time. <p>As we shot down I-75 at 95+ mph (I was too numb ... I didn't dare take my eyes off the road at that speed to see exactly how fast we were going), I noticed that we were coming up to slower traffic. <p>We slowed to about 75 mph in the fast lane as an 18 wheeler attempted to pass a passenger car. As the 18 wheeler turned back into the right-hand lane, I saw the rear-end of the M5 tuck down once again. No thought. Pedal to the floorboard. As we hit 110, I am still not sure if my body was shaking from the child-like giggles coming from my mouth or the gutteral-rumblings eminating from the engine of my beast. Look Ma, I'm floating.<p>More traffic up ahead, and the same scenario: 18 wheeler passing a passenger car. But just as the 18 wheeler cleared the passenger car, the rear of the M5 tucked down and it shot over into the right-hand lane. No thought. Pedal to the floorboards, I was on his ass in an instant. Uh oh ... there was a car in the right-hand lane that I didn't see ... the opening between the 18 wheeler in the fast lane and the passenger car in the slow lane was closing fast ... the M5 in front of me had a second to get into the fast lane before crashing into the rear of the slower passenger car ... it made it ... but the 18 wheeler had accelerated just enough to close the gap ... only by a bumper ... but just enough so I couldn't get through. <p>I let off the gas, hit the brakes (they are just simply awe-inspiring by the way!) and pulled into the fast lane behind the 18 wheeler. I thought that it would take the trucker a few seconds to pass the slower car in the right hand lane, move over, and I would catch up with my nemisis. A few seconds went by .... and a few more ... but the trucker wasn't pulling over ... as a matter of fact, he was slowing down. <p>I began to realize that the dream was over. The M5 was now long gone, and I had missed my chance. This time. (after all, I'm more likely to see another M5 on the road than another E55). <p>After about 5 heart-stopping minutes, the trucker finally sped up and pulled over. "The bastard", I thought, "was doing this on purpose". The first trucker probably called to the second trucker on the CB and told him that some SOB's in German super-cars were reaking havok and coming in his direction. <p>Oh, well. My day will come ... and my beast will be ready.<p>The final hour of my ride home was made with an ear to ear grin. I cannot say enough good things about the E55. Luxury. Solidity. Amenity. and Power, Power, Power . But only when you want it: normal driving (which I will be doing the majority of the time) is just that ... normal. The only noticable change from the norm is a more throaty growl from the front half of the car. The beast seems to ride on rails (as I noticed when taking an unfamiliar off-ramp in South Carolina ... recommended 20 mph exit hairpin, at 55 mph).<p>Sorry to cut this short (LOL), but I have to go out to the garage, take one last gander for the day, and say goodnight to my beast ... the finest vehicle I have ever owned.<p>I'll take pictures and post 'em this week.<p>-Drew. <p><br>
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Other virtues of the E55's 3 valve V8

This may be a point no one cares too much about, but our E55's fuel consumption is actually quite good considering how powerful the engine is.<p>I just checked a few car magazines, both from the US and the UK, and they both confirm that the E55 actually delivers better mileage than many other less powerful cars.<p>Per Road and Track's EPA numbers, the E55 consumes less fule than cars such as the BMW 540i, X5 4.4, M5, Z8 Audi S4, A6 4.2, A8 4.2 Jaguar S-Type, XJR, XKR Lexus SC400 Lincoln LS V8, Mazda Millenia S MB's own CLK430, S500, SL500 VW Passat GLS V6 Wagon Volvo C70, V70R AWD.<br>
 

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Never knew that ...

<br> ... Good work E! (more ammo to 'brag' with now!)<p>BTW: The 'V1' (with the concealed display) is on order and should arrive soon.
 

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indeed quite amazing: no gas guzzler tax for our 349 hp 2001 E55..

While others say MB is cost cutting using 3-valves instead of 4-valves technology, apparently the 3-valves engines are really that much more efficient.<p>What blows me away is that the E55 uses less fuel than a 540i yet performs as well as a M5.<p>Did you get a chance to disable the speed sensitive radio volume control?<p>Feel free to ask for help when installing the V1, did I tell you I also installed the K40 laser defuser?
 

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V1 & K40

I will let you know when it comes in ... I will probably have a prof. audio shop do the install.<p>Just clicked on your link for the K40 ... E, I'm a little confused ... what does it do, or do better than the V1?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
V1 & K40 laser defuser

Don't worry, V1 is still the way to go. However, if you want the extra protection against laser, you can have the K40 laser defuser installed in addition to the V1.<p>While the V1 can detect laser when you get hit (which is often too late), the K40 laser defuser goes the extra mile jamming the laser signal making it hard for laser guns to register your speed.<p>This buys you time to slow down.<p>When the defuser beeps warning you that you're the target of a laser gun (your V1 will probably go off at the same time), not only will the defuser warn you about the threat, it will also interfere with the laser gun giving you time to slow down. After you have slowed to the legal speed limit, you turn off the defuser to give the cops an acceptable reading.
 

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Cool ...

----------------<p>Is installation difficult?<p>1.) We aren't required to have front license plates in Florida I read that the K40 can be mounted without the license plate frame, but the company also said elsewhere on its Website that the front diffusor needs to be positioned without an obstructtion ... ie., not behind the front grill. <p>2.) You've seen my Beast's rear-end ... I have a license plate frame that compliments the rest of the chrome on the car (IMHO). I saw the black-plastic looking frame on the Website, and would prefer not to have it replace my existing frame ... would there be another option for the rear?<p>
 

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Discussion Starter #8
anti-laser

<center><img src="http://www.1-radar-laser-jammers-detectors.com/laser-jammer.html"></center><p>Hmm, do the cops use laser in Florida? I know cops are trained to aim the laser at the front plate for the best reading and if you don't have the front plate, it makes life much more difficult for them to get a speed on your car. It's rare they shoot at you from the rear as when the target is moving away from them, getting a good hit is even more tricky.<p>What I did was I removed the defuser sensor from the license plate frame and mounted it just below the front plate discretely. Having the big ugly frame is a total give away for not only cops but thieves.<p>In your case without the front plate, I won't worry too much about it. The cops may not get you on the first hit and hopefully the V1 will give you enough warning to slow down. If you insist, there are other brands of laser jammers that can be mounted in your grill. One is called the laser blinder from Europe, it consists of two little sensors.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Sorry it was supposed to be another URL text link and not an image link, here it is anyway..

More on the laser jammer
 

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Interesting ... Looks like the V1 is a winner ...

Not sure about the Blinder though. <p>I would like to see un-biased reports (in car magazines, for instance) before even considering it ... any ideas on where to find ?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Indeed, V1 is the way to go.

Can't remember where I last read the car magazine reports on jammers but I do remember reading somewhere how useless the Phazer Phantom radar jammer is.<br>I believe most laser jammers do work but to jam radar is a different story..
 
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