Leading power: The new BMW M5.
A change in leadership is nigh in the exclusive segment that brings together ultra-dynamic business sedans with track-oriented drive and chassis technology. The new BMW M5 is poised to build on the tradition of its predecessors and once again redefine the performance experience available in a four-door car.
Displaying the conceptual harmony, state-of-the-art technology and astonishingly dynamic handling for which BMW M cars have become renowned, the fifth-generation BMW M5 stirs the passion of keen drivers for top performance and blends it, in inimitable style, with the universal qualities of a top-class premium sedan. The most powerful engine ever fitted in a series-produced model from BMW M GmbH, the innovative Active M Differential – which optimises power transfer to the rear wheels – and model-specific chassis technology developed on the back of extensive racing expertise all secure the BMW M5 a dominant position among high-performance sedans.
Under the bonnet of the new BMW M5 lies a newly developed, high-revving V8 engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology producing maximum output of 412 kW at 6,000 – 7,000 rpm and peak torque of 680 Newton metres between 1,500 and 5,750 rpm. The instantaneous power delivery and sustained thrust familiar from M cars are the key to acceleration of 0–100 km/h in 4.4 seconds (0–200 km/h: 13.0 seconds). Average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle stands at 9.9 litres per 100 kilometres (CO<sub>2</sub> emissions: 232 g/km).
While output has increased by around 10 per cent and maximum torque is up by more than 30 per cent, the new BMW M5 burns over 30 per cent less fuel than its predecessor. The significantly improved balance between the performance-focused M experience and the car’s fuel consumption stems from the exceptionally impressive efficiency of the new V8 engine and from far-reaching Efficient Dynamics technology, including the Auto Start-Stop function in conjunction with the standard seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission Drivelogic.
In order to channel the engine’s imposing power development into inspiring performance characteristics, the new BMW M5 boasts chassis technology – including electronically controlled dampers, M-specific Servotronic steering, a stability control system with M Dynamic Mode and high-performance compound brakes – which was developed on the back of racing expertise and is weight-optimised and tuned to the output profile of the powerplant.
This technology combines with model-specific, function-related design features – which make a direct contribution to optimising the supply of cooling air and enhancing aerodynamic characteristics – to create the conceptual harmony typical of BMW M cars. The precise interplay of the drive system, chassis and design has been refined in extensive and detailed testing on the Nordschleife circuit at the Nürburgring to ensure unbeatable longitudinal and lateral acceleration, handling characteristics and braking performance.
The interior design, control concept and innovative equipment features of the new car also play their part in creating the exclusive M experience. Sports seats, an M leather steering wheel, and an M-specific instrument cluster and centre console lend the cockpit a classical sports car feeling. For the first time, two M Drive buttons have been fitted as standard for the driver to call up the ideal car set-up for the situation at hand. High-quality, precisely finished materials, generous levels of space and the extensive range of equipment fitted as standard generate the premium ambience – laced with cutting-edge luxury – of a BMW 5 Series model. Moreover, customers can also give their car the personal touch, since virtually the full range of options for the BMW 5 Series Sedan are also available for the M5, including a host of driver assistance systems and mobility services from BMW ConnectedDrive.
Body design: hallmark M design elements make a genuine contribution to meeting technical requirements.
The design of the body faithfully showcases the standout characteristics of the new BMW M5. The dynamic proportions and stylishly authoritative appearance of the BMW 5 Series Sedan has been further enhanced by the addition of M-specific design features which are geared precisely to meeting the technical demands of the car, making them a central element of the high-performance Sedan’s overall concept.
The design of the front apron clearly embodies the supreme power of the new V8 engine. The contour lines of the bonnet converge in a V to the brand’s hallmark double-kidney grille. The wide-spread arrangement of the customary M black slats – like the three large air intakes in the lower section of the apron – emphasise the cooling air requirement of the engine behind the grille. At the lower edge of the front end, air-channelling flaps developed on the race track ensure optimised aerodynamics.
The standard-fitted bi-xenon headlights generate daytime running light with visually unique LED light rings. Cutting across the top of the customary twin round headlights are LED accent lights to create the characteristic intent look – both during the day and in night-time driving.
The long wheelbase, set-back passenger compartment and high-gloss black side window borders clearly accentuate the stretched silhouette of the new BMW M5. Prominently flared, muscular wheel arches, wheels sitting flush with the bodywork and lowered suspension enhance the car’s sporting presence when viewed from the side. The model-specific 19-inch M light-alloy wheels in double-spoke design also assist in this regard. The side skirts of the new BMW M5 also have a design very much of their own. The aerodynamically honed form of the exterior mirrors is accentuated by a horizontal colour gradation, while the front side panels sport a fresh take on the hallmark M gills.
The bespoke rear apron draws particular attention to the drive forces channelled through the rear wheels. A diffuser integrated into the lower edge of the apron provides efficient airflow through the back end of the underfloor section. A signature M feature of the new BMW M5 is the twin-pipe exhaust system, whose tailpipes are positioned wide to either side of the diffuser. The subtle gurney-style rear spoiler on the boot lid also aids the car’s aerodynamics.
The drive system: high-revving V8 engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology sets new standards in output and efficiency.
For the first time, a BMW M5 has a turbocharged engine to thank for its outstanding dynamics. The high-revving V8 unit with M TwinPower Turbo technology mobilises the highest output ever generated by a BMW M car, and at the same time provides the most efficient balance yet between performance and fuel consumption. The 4.4-litre engine develops top output of 412 kW/560 hp at 6,000 – 7,000 rpm, while its maximum torque of 680 Newton metres is on tap between 1,500 and 5,750 rpm. The rev limiter intervenes at 7,200 rpm. The rev band, which offers extremely dynamic acceleration between the arrival of peak torque and the availability of maximum output, is therefore almost three times as wide as that of the predecessor unit.
The M TwinPower Turbo package of technology developed for the engine powering the new BMW M5 combines design features derived directly from motor racing with innovations spawned by the rigorous implementation of the Efficient Dynamics strategy. It comprises a turbocharging system based on the Twin Scroll Twin Turbo principle, including cross-bank exhaust manifolds, High Precision Direct Petrol Injection and VALVETRONIC variable valve control. Added to which, the engine has an extremely powerful cooling system and wet sump lubrication optimised for high lateral loads. This is a combination without parallel worldwide and produces the suitably exclusive performance characteristics you would expect from a BMW M car. The experience is defined by instantaneous responses and extremely impressive pushing power developed from extremely low revs and maintained into the higher reaches of the engine speed range.
The two turbochargers of the eight-cylinder engine are accommodated, along with the catalytic converters, in the V-shaped space between the cylinder banks. This arrangement allows model-specific positioning of the intake and exhaust ducts with their reduced pipe length and larger cross sections. The cross-bank exhaust manifold ensures additional optimisation of the gas flow. It is made up of four separate exhaust ducts, which are connected with the exhaust ports of two combustion chambers – one on the left-hand cylinder bank and one on the right. Identical pipe lengths and a combustion chamber arrangement mirroring the firing sequence ensure the gas flows through the exhaust ducts at an even rhythm. In each case, two of the four exhaust gas ducts supply one of the two turbos, having been channelled together shortly before they reach the turbine. The result is a consistent level of pressure acting on the turbochargers, without any kind of counter-flow, ensuring that the turbines respond extremely rapidly.
The responsiveness, intensity and smoothness of power delivery results in impressive acceleration. The sprint from rest to the 100 km/h mark is all over in 4.4 seconds, and from that point progress continues with barely any let-up. Indeed, the M5 needs just 13.0 seconds to race from 0–200 km/h. Maximum speed is electronically restricted to 250 km/h; if the optional Driver’s Package is specified, this limit is raised to 305 km/h.
Credit for the advances made on the efficiency front can also be put down to the M TwinPower Turbo technology package. The turbocharging raises the output of the M5 despite its lower displacement, and the dethrottling further enhances the engine’s efficiency. The High Precision Injection petrol direct injection system uses injectors positioned centrally between the valves to ensure an extremely precise supply of fuel to the combustion chambers. In addition, VALVETRONIC fully variable valve control and Double-Vanos fully variable camshaft control improve both torque development and fuel efficiency. The volume-controlled oil pump and a range of other Efficient Dynamics measures – including Brake Energy Regeneration and the Auto Start-Stop function – deliver an extra boost to efficiency. As a result, the new BMW M5 records average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle of 9.9 litres per 100 kilometres and CO<sub>2</sub> emissions of 232 grams per kilometre.
High performance applies to power transfer as well: the seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission with Drivelogic.
The new BMW M5 is kitted out with a seven-speed double-clutch transmission to ensure that the transfer of engine output to the rear wheels serves up the time-honoured M experience. The M DCT Drivelogic system developed specially for the M5 delivers exceptionally fast and clean gear changes both in automated mode (D) and manual (S). The model-specific M gear selector allows the driver to choose between D and S mode, and to engage reverse. It also offers a sequential shift pattern for the manual gearshift mode. Alternatively, the driver can also change gears manually using the standard-fitted shift paddles on the steering wheel.
M DCT Drivelogic offers three shift programs in S and D mode. When the stability control system is switched off, the Launch Control function allows the driver to achieve the maximum acceleration force possible from a standstill – as permitted by the condition of the road – by pressing the accelerator down with maximum force. Meanwhile, in stop-start traffic, comfort is further enhanced by the new Low Speed Assistance function.
Innovation for unbeatable traction in dynamic driving situations: the Active M Differential.
BMW M cars are equipped with a specially developed rear axle differential with a variable locking function to allow the driver to enjoy the benefits of rear-wheel drive to the full – in the form of the sharpest possible driving dynamics. In the new BMW M5, this innovation ensures an even more precise distribution of drive between the right and left rear wheel according to the driving situation. The Active M Differential optimises stability with the help of an electronically controlled multi-plate limited-slip differential.
The rear axle’s multi-plate limited-slip differential works with extremely high precision and speed. Its control unit is connected with the DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) system and also takes into account the position of the accelerator pedal, the rotational speed of the wheels and the car’s yaw rate. Every driving situation is therefore precisely analysed and an impending loss of traction on one side of the car identified at an early stage. The degree of lock is adjusted as required within a fraction of a second and can range from zero to 100 per cent. Wheel spin is thus also prevented on slippery surfaces, in instances where the right and left rear wheel have widely differing friction coefficients, in tight bends and when changing direction extremely dynamically. Optimising traction in this way also provides unbeatable driving stability in challenging conditions and allows impressively dynamic acceleration out of corners.
M-specific chassis, electronically controlled dampers,
M Dynamic Mode.
The new BMW M5 comes with bespoke chassis technology whose construction and set-up are defined by extensive expertise from the race track. Like the integral rear axle, whose subframes are bolted rigidly to the body, the double-wishbone front axle boasts specific kinematics and newly developed components made from forged aluminium. Chassis mountings using large panels at the front and rear axle ensures dynamic forces are passed evenly through to the body.
The new BMW M5 is equipped as standard with electronically controlled dampers. Dynamic Damper Control uses electrohydraulic damping force adjustment to provide a set-up suited to the driving situation or the wishes of the driver. There are three damper settings to choose from.
The hydraulic rack-and-pinion steering with variable ratio is another M-specific feature, combining precise directional stability with a need for less steering effort when manoeuvring. The M Servotronic system has also been specially configured and allows the driver to adapt the characteristics of the speed-sensitive power assistance to individual tastes and requirements via three settings.
In addition to applying brake impulses and reducing engine output to stabilise the car, the DSC system in the new BMW M5 also employs the services of the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Cornering Brake Control (CBC) and Dynamic Brake Control (DBC), as well as a Brake Assistant, Brake Drying function and Start-Off Assistant. M Dynamic Mode (MDM) can be activated to override the basic setting by pressing the DSC button on the centre console. This mode generates the familiar M self-steering response by raising the intervention thresholds of DSC. “DSC Off” mode can also be activated at the touch of a button.
High-performance compound brakes, extensive safety equipment, extremely impressive power-to-weight ratio.
The high-performance braking system of the new BMW M5 guarantees outstanding stopping power. The further development of the remarkable compound construction has resulted in further optimised braking performance – resisting fade even under heavy loads – and an enviable degree of feel. The six-piston fixed-calliper brakes are radially bolted to the pivot bearing. The M-specific light-alloy wheels for the new BMW M5 come in 19-inch format as standard and are fitted with 265/40 R19 tyres at the front and 295/35 R19 items at the rear.
Hallmark M handling and occupant protection both benefit from the extraordinary strength of the body structure. An intelligent mix of materials containing a high proportion of high-tensile and ultra-high-tensile steels, as well as aluminium, help to minimise the car’s weight. Like the bonnet and front side sections, the doors are also made from aluminium, as are virtually all the chassis components. With a power-to-weight ratio of 3.3 kg, the new BMW M5 represents a substantial step forward from its predecessor in this area as well. The safety equipment fitted as standard includes front and side airbags, side curtain head airbags for both rows of seats, three-point inertia reel seat belts on all seats, front belt force limiters and belt tensioners, and ISOFIX child seat attachments in the rear.
Interior and controls: sports car cockpit with premium ambience.
The interior of the new BMW M5 brings together an inimitable combination of the driver-oriented cockpit design of a sports car, the spaciousness of a prestige sedan and the luxurious feel of a premium model. Bespoke M sports seats, Merino leather upholstery with extended features and exclusive aluminium Trace interior trim strips are all standard equipment, as is the iDrive control system with an up to 10.2-inch Control Display. The instrument cluster with black-panel technology includes classical circular instruments in traditional BMW M car style, with red needles and white illumination, as well as model-specific displays and the M logo in the rev counter.
Two M Drive buttons now included to activate the individually configured set-up options.
Arranged around the gearshift lever on the leather-covered centre console designed specially for the new BMW M5 are the buttons allowing drivers to select their preferred settings for all the adjustable drive system and chassis functions. The DSC mode, performance characteristics of the engine, Dynamic Damper Control mapping, M Servotronic responses and M DCT Drivelogic shift program can all be adjusted independently. This allows drivers to put together a detailed set-up configuration for their car and store it by holding down one of the two M Drive buttons on the multifunction steering wheel.
With two M Drive buttons now available, drivers can use the M1 button, for example, to put a sporty configuration within easy reach and the M2 button to keep a comfort-biased option in the locker for when they’d rather take it easy. This ensures they always have the desired option at their fingertips. Whichever setting they select will remain activated until they cancel it by pressing the button again or change to the other M Drive set-up. Cancelling one of the set-up options restores the car’s basic efficiency and comfort-focused configuration, as is the case when you switch on the engine. The set-up options selected using the M Drive buttons can also be adjusted via the iDrive menu.
Head-Up Display with M-specific information comes as standard.
The M Drive configuration also includes the information shown on the Head-Up Display, which comes as standard on the new BMW M5. In addition to a digital speed readout and tips from the optional Speed Limit Info, the M-specific version of the Head-Up Display also shows the gear currently engaged and a multicolour rev counter symbol, complete with Shift Lights.
The new BMW M5 also comes as standard with four-zone automatic climate control, heated seats and electric seat adjustment (including memory function for the driver and front passenger), xenon headlights, ambient light, an alarm system and the BMW Professional radio. In addition, almost all of the items of optional equipment available for the BMW 5 Series Sedan can be ordered as an option. Among the highlights are the Navigation system Professional with a hard disk, the electrically operated glass roof, M multifunction seats, active seats, active seat ventilation, Comfort Access, an electrically adjustable steering column, the Soft Close Automatic function for the doors and a trailer coupling with electrically pivoting trailer hitch ball.
The range of optional driver assistance systems and mobility services from BMW ConnectedDrive include, among other features, Park Distance Control, a rear view camera, Adaptive Headlights with cornering lights, High-Beam Assistant, Speed Limit Info, the Lane Change Warning System, the Lane Departure Warning System, Surround View and BMW Night Vision with pedestrian detection.
Plus, innovative technologies optimise the integration of the Apple iPhone and other smartphones, as well as music players, including the use of internet-based services. The apps option allows iPhone owners to receive Web Radio stations, for example, and display Facebook and Twitter posts on the on-board monitor.