In May 2016 I took a 10,000 mile roadtrip across the USA in a 2001 E39 M5 with 150k miles on it. Besides an oil and coolant change and throwing a spare tire and jack in the trunk, the M5 had no preparation.

3 large college guys loaded it up with camping gear and we set off out west. None of us had been west of the Mississippi and I had a car. It was summer break and we decided to just go for it one morning. You’re only young and dumb once :)

We camped at Grand Canyon, Death Valley, Zion, Yosemite, Glacier, Arches, Bonneville and visited LA, Las Vegas, SD, SF, Denver, SLC and Phoenix - always camping out near the car to save money.

The M5 had to do more than its fair share of soft roading to make it to these campsites

And at one point we got stuck in the mud and a nice family pulled us out. Will upload the pic when I find it.

None of us had been much further than the Midwest, so seeing these national wonders literally brought me to tears. And doing it in my dream car made it so much better.

I bought the M5 the year before when I was in college for about $10k. It had a few quirks but was a dead reliable transportation most of the time. Despite being loaded to the bumpstops with people and gear, it never broke a sweat. Even when temperatures in Death Valley were 120 degrees.

The roadtrip was something special I’ll remember my entire life. And that car will always be my favorite vehicle. Unfortunately I had to sell the car to a friend last December with with around 172k miles. It was becoming too needy and expensive for my budget. But I will own a newer, cleaner example one day.