When the engineers at BMW started to work on the E39 M5, they tried to build a car that was useful, sporty and elegant, all in a BMW packaging. In my opinion they were successful as the E39 M5 is one of the greatest cars ever built, not to mention it looks great in nowadays.
Meet Stuart Appleby of South Wales Australia, the man who decided to transform his beautiful E39 M5, into the ultimate V8-powered small pick-up ever known to mankind. After two years of work, sweat and blood, Mr.Appleby has announced that his BMW M5 pick-up project is finally completed at the expense of destroying one of the most desirable cars of today.
The vehicle has not been dyno-tested at the time of this post but the builders are saying that the M5′s tuned 4.9-liter V8 could be making as much as 460hp at the rear wheels. The chop is surely to affect the handling of a once fine tuned vehicle because as everyone knows that pick-up’s are not known to handle like any car carrying the ‘M’ badge but that’s not to say that the work was not well done. The way it all seems to flow together shows that this project is not the work of amateurs but those who know what they’re doing. I’m just wondering how it drives, besides being fast in a straight line. Maybe a mean character could justify the cruelty unleashed onto the poor vehicle, and maybe, just maybe someone at BMW Motorsport GmbH will see this and decide to have his vengeance.
Anyway, here is what the “proud” owner had to say about his project :
“I grew up in Australia for my first 20 years of my life and the “ute” had always been an Aussie icon to a boy from the bush, a way of life for many Australians. I’ve been lucky enough to have owned in the US one of the best sedans the automotive industry has ever produced in the BMW E39 M5.
I wanted to create a special combination of a cross over M5 ute concept not long after I purchased my M5 in Florida in 2000. This ute idea came to me many years ago when I looked at a picture I took of my M5 and thought that it would make a great idea….what was I thinking?
Years pass by, and I decide I needed to follow through with this concept a bit more. Five years pass and I find a very suitable donor car from a friend in Queeensland that probably had the finest 2003 M5 in Australia. He was happy to have his pride and joy “chopped up” for an undertaking of this magnitude. The car had many mods that I was going to put on a lesser car but he had done all the hard yards for me.
Trying to find a shop that had the skills for this sort of work was going to be difficult and time consuming, but in a flash I bumped in to Shane from Southern Rod and Custom in southern New South Wales Australia. His reputation in the hot rod game is held very highly. A quick visit to his work shop that was only one hour from my home as a boy. I could see in the 3 hours I spent with him that he was very capable to create my vision. Ryan from Style Transformation Masters created the sketches you see here, that look great. The time line for a job like this is about 9 – 12 months. I’m looking forward to watching this world first get started and one day a finished product”