News: New BMW M5By Chris Walsh
September 29, 2011
The world’s most desirable four-door bruiser is back. And BMW’s fifth generation M5 comes with a brand new M powered, 4.4-litre V8 instead of the crunching V10 that made it such an icon. But power-lovers needn’t be concerned as the new V8 comes with a couple of turbos, giving the new M5 even more power than before.
These Twin Scroll, Twin Turbos generate most of the M5’s phenomenal power. But high precision direct petrol injection, cross-bank manifolds and fully variable valve control also help. The end product is a stonking 560hp from 6,000rpm. Maximum torque weighs in at a hefty 502lb-ft from just 1,500rpm and the new V8 will keep revving all the way to 7,200rpm if desired.
This results in a 0–62 time of just 4.4 seconds, a 0–124mph in just 13.0 seconds and if you fit the M Driver’s package, a top speed of 190 mph will be yours. Average fuel consumption is a respectable 28.5mpg, which is cut by more than 30 per cent over the previous model because of BMW’s new Efficient Dynamics technology, Auto Start-Stop function and a Brake Energy Regeneration system.
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All that power is transferred to the rear wheels via a seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission with Drivelogic, a traction-optimised automatic gear selector. You also get launch control for those extra precise, high-impact starts.
The M5 has a wealth of kit within the car to make sure your drive always get the most from the new chassis technology. The front and rear suspension features M-specific axle kinematics with M Servotronic steering, Dynamic Damper Control, DSC stability control and a lightweight compound high-performance braking system.
The car boasts outstandingly agile handling thanks to an innovative electronically controlled, multi-plate, limited-slip, rear-axle differential. This enables fully variable distribution of drive between the rear wheels to optimise traction with acceleration from every corner. The degrees of lock can be varied between 0 and 100 per cent according to the situation, promoting a fast, precise and pre-emptive response, thanks to constantly cross-checking data between the Active M Differential, the DSC stability control system, the accelerator pedal position, wheel speed and yaw rate.
As in the previous model, two set-ups for the car can be called up using the new M Drive buttons on the steering wheel. Pressing those buttons changes all-manner of programmable parameters like the engine response, M Servotronic response, Drivelogic shift times, the DSC mode, the damper control and the type of info displayed in the Head-Up Display.
As with BMW’s entire M range, you get exceptionally characteristic body design with the type of aesthetics that reflect the cars ability. Flared wheel arches emphasise the extra wide track, while the hallmark M “gills” with integrated indicator bars also make a re-appearance. The aerodynamically optimised rear apron gets a diffuser between the right and left-hand pair of twin exhausts, whilst the boot lid gets a gurney-style spoiler. Exclusive lightweight, double-spoke 19-inch M alloy wheels complement the finished look. Prices start around £73k.