BMW unveils more powerful yet more fuel efficient fifth generation M5
By Darren Quick
June 15, 2011
Following the appearance of the Concept M5 in April, BMW has released details of the new M5 that is expected to go on sale later this year. The fifth generation of BMW's flagship high-performance saloon will be the first vehicle to feature the newly developed BMW M V8 engine that propels the car from 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.4 seconds, 0-200 km/h (124 mph) in 13 seconds, before topping out at 250 km/h (155 mph) or 305 km/h (190 mph) with the optional M Driver's Package. But alongside the impressive performance stats, BMW is also touting the improved fuel efficiency of the new M5.
The new M5's M division-developed twin-turbocharged, 4.4 liter V8 develops 412 kW/560 hp at 6,000-7,000 rpm and a maximum torque of 680 Nm (502 lb-ft) from 1,500 rpm. Although BMW says the engine output is 10 percent up on the previous model M5 and the maximum torque has increased by 30 percent, the new M5 manages to cut fuel consumption by more than 30 percent over the previous M5, coming in at a combined figure of 9.9 liters/100 km (28.5 mpg), thanks to the inclusion of systems such as Auto Start-Stop and Brake Energy Regeneration.
Power is delivered to the rear wheels via a seven-speed M double clutch Drivelogic transmission controlled via shift paddles on the M leather steering wheel. BMW claims the M5 boasts outstanding agility thanks to a rear axle Active M Differential sporting an electronically controlled multi-plate limited-slip differential that enables fully variable distribution between the rear wheels to optimize traction and stability for dynamic lane changing and accelerating out of corners. The electronically controlled dampers offer three settings: Comfort for everyday road use, Sport for more dynamic driving, and Sport Plus for taking the car to the track.
The steering wheel features new M Drive buttons that can call up two individually configured car set-ups covering a range of programmable parameters including accelerator responses, M Servotronic responses, Drivelogic shift program, DSC mode, Dynamic Damper Control and information displayed in the HUD.
The new M5's body design is instantly recognizable as a member of the M5 family and sees the inclusion of large intakes for the engine and brakes on the front apron, flared wheel arches, M "gills" with integrated indicator bars, aerodynamic rear apron with diffuser between the right and left-hand pair of twin exhaust tailpipes, gurney-style rear spoiler on the boot lid and 19-inch M light-alloy wheels with a double-spoke design.
BMW says the M5's interior is designed to combine a sports car cockpit with the luxury M5 drivers have come to expect. The M-specific instrument cluster is housed in a newly designed, leather-covered center console, while the standard spec M sports seats feature Merino leather upholstery. There's also exclusive Aluminum Trace interior trim strips, Anthracite roof liner and four-zone automatic climate control and ambient light.
Driver assistance systems include BMW ConnectedDrive, M-speciific HUD as standard, adaptive headlights, High-Beam Assistant, BMW Night Vision with pedestrian recognition, lane change warning system, lane departure warning system and speed limit info.
BMW is expected to give the new M5 its official public debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September, ahead of a release before the end of the year.