The brand-new BMW 5 Series range will be launched next month here in the UK with an updated exterior design and all four and six-cylinder models featuring mild-hybrid technology with the exceptions of the PHEV and M550i xDrive models. In fact, this will be the first time that the M Performance M550i xDrive saloon will be available. The Touring version will be available with a plug-in drive system from November 2020.
The new 5 Series offers an increased level of refinement and connectivity as well as enhanced driver assistance systems and cutting-edge innovations. For example there is a larger 12.3” Central Information Display powered by the latest Operating System 7.0, including BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant and Smartphone Integration, as well as the latest camera and radar-based driving assistant systems, including steering and lane-control assistant and active cruise control.
Turning to the car’s exterior, the new BMW 5 Series’ distinctive front kidney grille is wider and higher whilst the slimmer contouring of the headlights gives a more focused yet familiar look that identifies BMWs both past and present. The standard full LED headlights include two U-shaped daytime driving lights to create a precise and modern light graphic. You can choose to upgrade to either Adaptive LED headlights with matrix technology or BMW Laserlights including High-beam Assistant. With these headlight upgrades you get two L-shaped daytime driving lights rather than the U-shaped ones. This latest generation of BMW’s Laserlight technology increases the lighting range by up to 600 metres and includes a blue laser effect within the eye-brow. On both Adaptive LED and Laserlight upgrades, you can select the optional ‘BMW Individual Lights Shadow Line’ for an even sportier front profile look. In addition, the front apron of both the SE and M Sport have been redesigned with larger and more pronounced air inlets.
At the rear of the car, the LED taillights now have an additional top overhang that transforms the L-motif into a C-shape. Blackened lenses frame the taillights for a more slender, high-tech look, with bold, stepped contours providing a more modern appearance. The rear apron has also been redesigned with trapezoidal tailpipe finishers and a sportier mounted diffuser on the Saloon models.
If you opt for the M Sport package, you can choose new 19” or 20” Wheels whilst the new limited M Sport Edition comes with exclusive Individual metallic paint and unique 20” Air Performance wheels. The M Sport package gives the new 5 Series a much sportier look from both the front and rear profiles. The car also gets the M aerodynamics package and M Sport steering wheel.
There will also be a new M Sport Edition version, limited to a worldwide production run of just 1,000 cars. Its exclusive specification includes the M Sport package, model-specific 20” Air Performance Wheels and a choice of two exclusive exterior paints including Donington Grey and Tanzanite Blue.
The new BMW 5 Series comes with a choice of three trim levels – the SE, M Sport and M Sport Edition. And for the first time in the UK, BMW are introducing a top of the range M Performance M550i xDrive on their saloon models.
The SE offers as standard a choice of 17”, 18” or 19” alloy wheels and Steptronic or Steptronic Sport transmission depending on the engine type you choose. The interior comes with Dakota leather upholstery, Oxide Silver dark matt trim, Sport leather steering wheel and heated front seats. The SE Touring gets split folding rear seats and matt silver roof rails, with all body styles fitted with a helpful electronic tailgate.
New for the SE are folding mirrors, front electric lumbar support and Parking Assistant. Comfort, convenience and connectivity are improved with automatic air conditioning, DAB radio, Connected Package Professional and BMW Live Cockpit Professional.
With the M Sport trim, you have a choice of three new alloy wheel designs in 18”, 19” and 20”sizes, the M aerodynamics package and high gloss shadowline exterior trim, which now extends to the roof rails on the Touring. Inside the car, there you get an M leather steering wheel, front sports seats, a distinctive instrument panel finished in Sensatec, anthracite headliner and Aluminium Rhombicle Grey trim details. M Sport suspension is standard except on 530e and 530e xDrive models. In addition, the limited M Sport Edition features 20” alloy wheels fitted with runflat tyres, shadowline adaptive LED headlights, new red M brake callipers, extended high-gloss shadowline exterior trim and sun protection glass. The car is also fitted with an M rear spoiler and M multifunction seats on the Saloon model.
The top of the range M550i XDrive Saloon is fitted with a 4.4 litre V8 TwinPower turbocharged engine, exclusive 20” wheels, cerium grey exterior detailing, Harman/Kardon Surround Sound System, an M Sport differential and adaptive M suspension.
Speaking of engines, the new 5 Series comes with a choice of plug-in hybrid with the latest fourth-generation battery technology including an all-new six-cylinder 545e xDrive Saloon and four-cylinder 530e sDrive/xDrive Touring. BMW’s mild-hybrid technology was first introduced in the BMW 520d and BMW 520d xDrive models last autumn, and will now offer enhanced performance combined with lower fuel consumption and improved driving comfort in all four and six-cylinder variants of the new BMW 5 Series. BMW have fitted a powerful 48V starter-generator and a second battery which enables a significant increase in the amount of brake energy that can be regenerated and stored. This energy is used not just to supply the electrical system, but also to lighten the combustion engine’s workload and boost its overall power. An additional 8 kW/11 hp is instantly available through the starter-generator which produces an electric boost that enhances overtaking and off-the-line acceleration.
The new BMW 5 Series comes with a choice of three additional petrol and three diesel engines, which produce between 184hp and 340hp. And then there is the 530hp V8 which is fitted in the top of the range BMW M550i xDrive Saloon.
The direct injection system in the petrol engines operates at increased pressure, giving the engine greater efficiency, while the two-stage turbocharging technology now fitted on all diesel engines makes for even sharper power delivery. All the 5 Series engines come with an eight-speed Steptronic transmission as standard. BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel drive is also available on the 520d, 530d, 530e, 540i, 545e and M550i models.
When it comes to road holding, the new BMW 5 Series offers a choice of sophisticated chassis systems designed to offer the driver either enhanced agility and dynamism when putting the car through its paces or improved driving comfort. You can also specify M Sport suspension, Adaptive M suspension and Adaptive M suspension Professional including active roll-stabilisation.
The price in the UK for the new 5 Series Saloon starts at £37,480 for the 520i SE, which increases to £45,480 for the 520i M Sport Edition. The 520i SE Touring starts at £39,730.
For more information on the new BMW 5 Series, please visit: www.bmw.co.uk
Simon Burrell is Editor of Our Man Behind The Wheel, a member of The Guild of Motoring Writers, professional photographer and former saloon car racing driver.
Photographs courtesy of BMW Group