When performing repairs on your BMW E39 it is important to be able to identify standard items and optional features. Option codes will help you determine what your vehicle is equipped with when ordering parts or diagnosing an issue. The trim level list below identifies possible options a BMW E39 could be equipped with. Not all options were available all years and some became standard options as the vehicle reached later years. There is a ton of confusing information on the web regarding option codes and what was what, my suggestion is to have your local shop or dealer decode your VIN next time you are in for service. Have them supply you an option code list and store it with your vehicle service records.
E39 Trim Levels
Sport wheels and tires
Multifunction steering wheel
Wood grain interior trim
Rain-sensing windshield wipers (standard equipment from model year 2000)
Auto-dimming rear-view mirror
Moonroof (moonroof also available separately)
The sport package was available on all E39 models, unless you have the M5.
Three-spoke steering wheel (standard in 2000)
Sport seats with adjustable thigh support
17-inch sport wheels (not applicable with cold weather package)
Sport suspension (began with 528i, rear wheel drive models)
Sport Premium package
This was a mix of the Premium and Sport package and included options from both
Cold weather package (started in 1999)
Pass-through seat ski bag
Heated steering wheel
Decoding your VIN
You VIN (vehicle identification number) can be used to help purchase parts and identify vehicle options. The last seven numbers are all you need when ordering parts. However, it is important to know how to decode the entire VIN.
The VIN is located in many places. Two reliable spots to read it are on left lower corner of dashboard (green arrow), looking through windshield from outside vehicle.
The VIN is also located on the driver door jamb, vehicle identification sticker. (green arrow)
Using the sticker on your driver door jamb, you can also determine production date. (green arrow)
Using the sticker on your driver door jamb, you can also find your BMW model (green arrow) and tire pressure specifications as well as compatible tire size options. (yellow arrow) Important: VIN digit positions: The first 3 digits are the country of origin. Fourth and fifth positions are vehicle model. Position 6 is type of engine. The tenth digit of your VIN is vehicle model year. The last seven are the serial number.