BMW Press have released over 30 photos of all the 5-Series they have built to date. If you own a classic 5-series you’ll probably be interested in checking out the photo gallery after the jump where you can find beauty shots of your car in its most pristine original state.

The 5-er has certainly grown larger, heavier and more powerful over the years. The first 5-er 520i used four cylinder engines making 115hp and 130hp respectively for the 520 and 520i. The most powerful first generation 5-er was the M535i, making 218 hp from its 6-pot.

The 2nd generation 5-Series made its debut with the introduction of the world’s first diesel 5-Series. Engine ranges extended from a low 90 horses up to 184 horses for the most powerful non-M 5-er. The M5 made 286 horsepower from its straight-six with individual throttle bodies. The first diesel 5-er was a 524td making 115 horses from its 2.4 litre inline-6.

The E34 was the third generation 5-series, starting from a 520i all the way up to a 535i, and then an M5. The petrol engines were exclusively 6-cylinder, and power was from as low as 115hp up to 211hp. The E45 M5 featured 6-potter engines making between 315 horses to 340 horses when it was updated in 1992. 1992 also introduced the V8-powered 530i and 540i models, using the same engines in the E32 730i and 740i. The E34 was also the first 5-er to feature electronically controlled all-wheel drive in 1991.

The fourth generation is my favorite 5-er. By now, more and more creature comforts have started being featured in the 5-er’s cabin including a multifunction steering, GPS navigation, active seats, DSC stability control, and etc. It was the first large-scale production car worldwide made almost completely of light alloy. You started off with a 150hp 520i inline-6, but the most powerful models were the 540i and M5, with the M car making 400 horsepower from its 4.9 litre V8 engine. Compare this to 218hp from the original M535i.

And then of course came the E60 which we only just recently said goodbye to. Well, not exactly since it is still on sale here in Malaysia pending the launch of the F10. The E60 also still holds the M5 crown since the F10 M5 has yet to be unveiled. The E60 had a controversial love or hate Chris Bangle design. How many of you used to dislike the E60 but now have grown fond of it since it has been replaced by the F10?

BMW E60

Because of the 7 year model lifecycle between BMW cars, you can see huge changes between models because of the progression of automotive technology. This car was complicated and full of tech – iDrive, DSC, Active Steering, Adaptive Drive, Head-Up Display, BMW Night Vision, Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go and Lane Departure Warning and etc.

From 2005 to 2008, the E60 BMW 5 Series was the best-selling car in its segment for four years in a row, with worldwide sales of this model generation amounting to more than a million units by the end of 2007. But not in Malaysia of course, where the E-Class rules in terms of official sales (no way to count the grey imports!).

Look after the jump for a full gallery of the 5-er lineage.

[zenphotopress number=999 album=1043]