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Bahnstorming
BMW 5 Series 530i
BMW 5 Series 530i
Last updated: 25 November 2004 1154 GMT
lineResident motoring journalist Zog Ziegler gets out his travel rug and puts on his ocelot driving gloves once more, to test drive the BMW 5 Series...
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quoteRather than fly back to the UK, I took the opportunity to drive a 530i back, taking a long and convoluted route.quote
Zog Ziegler

A recent trip took me to Baden Baden with driving routes in the glorious Black Forest.

We were there to drive the all new Five Series BMWs - 520i, 530i and the 3.0 litre diesel - I'm obliged to concur with others that the oil burner is the pick of the litter.

Diesel closet

I still spend most of my time in the diesel closet, so such statements dribble off my quill reluctantly.

BMW 5 Series

Later we'll get some V8s in the mix, followed by the M5, which is rumoured to have a V10 and 500 plus bhp. Can't wait.

Rather than fly back to the UK, I took the opportunity to drive a 530i back, taking a long and convoluted route.

German roots

While at it I took a few days out to get in cahoots with my distant German roots.

I was also in need of some R&R. So I sat back, drove very fast and considered matters of engineering and culture German style…

quoteOnly the most fervent Hun hater would argue that Germans don't nail together some of the best cars on the planet.quote
Zog Ziegler

Only the most fervent Hun hater would argue that Germans don't nail together some of the best cars on the planet.

Over the years they've also enriched the world of music and literature - Beethoven and Bach, Brecht and Mann.

Since then their culture has taken something of a dip.

Television offerings

For a laugh look at some of their television offerings, both satellite and terrestrial; it'll make your teeth itch.

Dashboard

Drongos of dumbing down, such as Noel Edmonds and Mr. Blobby, look highbrow, even 20 years on, when compared to the moribund schtick served up on the German idiots' lantern.

And then there's the Deutche Jugend - yoof. British and American pop music sure ain't what it used to be, but the poor Germans never had a clue.

Head bangers

Kids there still groove on UK heavy metal sixties and seventies offerings, like Deep Purple, Ten Years After and Motorhead.

Switched-on thrusters bang their heads to a chap (or is it a band?) called Limp Bizkitt [sic].

quoteA mention in dispatches must be made for the mullet.quote
Zog Ziegler

Still, all this seems half reasonable when one considers homegrown offerings, of which there hasn't been much for the last quarter of a century.

Hairy armpits

But while we had the Beatles, Kinks and the Who, Germany's trannies trembled to James Last (yes, he's German), Bony M (so are they), Kraftwerk and that pretty little brunette with heroically hairy armpits, who sang Neun und Neunzig Luft Ballons.

Und zet, meine liebe poppen pickers, woz zet.

Mullet

I shan't even touch on, ahem, German Fashion but a mention in dispatches must be made for the mullet.

Leather interior

A generation after our last footballers sported this follicle abomination, the mullet is alive, well and caressing necks from Hamburg to Munich.

Pre-teen lads with mullet dads are still keen on the rat-tail, another whisp of nostalgia long since deep-sixed in blighty, merciful Heaven.

Lane discipline

I do like driving in Germany. Although many are relentless bullies when overtaking on the autobahnen, Germans do, however, display lane discipline that is exemplary.

They also, almost to a man (und woman), stick to speed limits, especially in built up areas, which is a good thing.

Autobahn virgins

Mobile phone in car

On the ever-shrinking miles of de-restricted autobahn they go like stabbed rats, which can be rather intimidating for autobahn virgins, something I ceased to be a long time ago.

In the excellent 5 series I was as menacing as the next man.

This truly great car will win even more accolades than the outgoing model.

If it doesn't I'll eat my ocelot driving gloves.

Article by Zog Ziegler

This article contains user-generated content (ie external contribution) expressing a personal opinion, not the views of BBC Gloucestershire.

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