Seen the new BMW M5 concept? Nice, isn’t it? Since last week’s pics were revealed ahead of the Shanghai Motor Show, the collective root-fizz at Top Gear HQ has had us clicking away at the usual suspects online all lunchtime, checking out old M5 prices and planning potential new additions to our over-burdened driveways.
But frankly, while £5K for an E39 M5 might sound tempting, our wasted hour has thrown up some rather more interesting alternatives…
FORD SCORPIO 2.9-LITRE COSWORTH
Underneath this questionable example’s light accident damage and gently corroded rear wheel arch there’s a 2.9-litre quad-cam Cosworth V6, which rattles out an incongruous 195bhp and 203ft lb of torque.
Pre-facelift MkIIs weren’t given a single Cossie badge outside, presumably to ward off thieves and cozzers. Beware the shanty-looking Scorpio revving at the lights.
It’s going for £600 on eBay. More here
VOLKSWAGEN PASSAT W8
Most people’s Passat experience involves rocking slowly in the back seat and trying not to vomit. But there’s more to the humble saloon’s range than cab-spec sick-catchers.
In 2001, VW gave us its dumb-fast four-wheel-drive, 4.0-litre, 275bhp W8. It was the first ever production car with a W8 engine, which got it to 60mph in 6.8 seconds – sounds like a far more exciting way to fetch up a kebab. And this one only costs three grand. Bargain.
Price on Pistonheads: £2,995. More here
A rather brilliant piece of Teutonic co-operation, this. In 1990, Mercedes gave Porsche a yawnsome E-Class saloon with a solitary instruction: make it a bit mental. Porsche lobbed in one of MB’s 326bhp 5.0-litre V8s, flared the arches, lowered and stiffened the suspension, banged some big brakes on and gave it back.
It’ll do 60mph in less than six seconds, looks like a Stuttgart taxi and this one costs less than a Chevy Cruz. Want.
Price on Car and Classic: £10,995. More here
Any more ideas in our quest for a ‘sleeper shed sort of like an M5′, TopGear.commers?