It is the first word in executive transport, appreciated by reps and bankers alike. And now the new BMW 5 series is fast approaching it’s release.
Thank god, the marmite love it or hate it styling is gone! The new car is a bit more conservative but by no means boring. The 5 series has a much more muscular appearance than its softer predecessor, with clearer lines and a wider, less curved front end, loosely inspired by the current BMW 7 series. If anything it is a look back to the fourth generation that was released in 1996.
Inside it is luxurious as usual. Quite simple but still enough toys in there for any man to keep busy for hours. Unfortunately, one of these toys is still BMW’s i-drive system. This changes the damper settings and manages the general performance of the car. It’s all a bit complicated really. The 5 series would be much better off with a simplified version such as that found in the Jaguar XF, one of the 5 series competitors. There will also be the long list of extra luxuries such as 360 degree surround cameras, collision warning with auto brake and a park assist system to add more gadgets than any driver really needs.
There is a nice array of engines on offer. Petrol engines range from a 2.3 litre straight six to a healthy five litre V8 which develops a comfortable 401 BHP. Soon enough a new M5 will also surely be on offer which will no doubt come with the same 500 BHP powerhouse that features in the current model. Despite the mouth watering figures of the petrol engines the biggest seller is likely to be the sensible 520d. High mpg and decent emissions will surely make it a favourite of the reps tearing up and down the M4.
The ride is supposed to be the best yet, according to BMW. They have emphasised the focus on the 5 series being a proper driver’s car. There is new, double wishbone suspension at the front which is supposed to bridge the gap between comfort and handling. In my opinion however, the i-drive system is another thing to get in the way of the driver. It is like a Ferrari; technically brilliant and no doubts easier to drive, but at the end of the day you will get more pleasure from something bare knuckled like an Aston Martin.
It is certainly going to be a nice car to drive and the performance should be virtually unparalleled. Visually it wasn’t hard to beat the old 5 series but they have gone a step further and made this quite a handsome car.