As an owner of a 1999 E39 528iT manual with the full sports package (seats/3-spoke steering wheel/suspension/style 5 rims) I can tell you they do exist. I spent quite a while trolling the US car sites looking for one and they were few and far between; mind you I specifically wanted the full sports package. I ended up finding one at a used car dealer in Toronto. I always keep an eye out for them. If you just want manual w/o sports, a few 525s and 528s will pop up. Any 540s have been retrofitted or imported from Europe. I have never seen or read about an e39 530iT, not sure if they exist this side of the pond.
Just keep looking and one will pop up. Awesome car. Be aware, rear subframe bushings go on this car in a bad way at 160K or sooner. If you find one, see if the owner has had them replaced. If not, expect a $1400 repair or DIY for about $400 in parts (like I did). Difficulty: (12/10) without a good tool to R&R .
'96 328iC - Summer cruiser
'99 528iT - 5speed - factory sport package - sport seats Wife/Family car
'03 325iT - Winter transport
Last edited by 528iT_5spd; 08-16-2010 at 05:57 PM.