BMW’s M series has consistently pushed the envelope, and the latest offering is no exception. The all-new BMW M5 represents a thrilling departure from convention, marking the M division’s inaugural foray into the realm of full-fat hybrid saloons. In this comprehensive article, we’ll delve into every aspect of this remarkable vehicle, exploring its power, design, and what sets it apart in the world of high-performance automobiles.
The Evolution of M Cars
BMW’s M series has witnessed a remarkable evolution over the years. From the understated sportiness of the original E30 M3 to the bold, larger-than-life presence of the current G80 models, these cars have been an embodiment of automotive prowess. The new G90 M5, however, takes this audaciousness to another level, pushing the boundaries of design and performance.
Exterior: A Visual Feast
The exterior of the new M5 is nothing short of spectacular. While retaining the fundamental silhouette of the 5 Series and the i5 saloon, nearly every body panel has been reimagined. The front bumper now features an imposing intake beneath the iconic double kidney grills, adorned with vertical bars. Additional intakes under the headlights aid brake cooling, while a newly introduced splitter enhances front-end downforce. The widened wheel arches and lower stance, reminiscent of retro racing touring cars, give this M5 an unmistakable road presence. At the rear, a prominent diffuser and lip spoiler optimizes airflow, and four massive exhausts ensure it sounds as powerful as it looks.
Powertrain: Embracing Hybrid Technology
The most significant departure from tradition lies under the hood of the new M5. For the first time ever, it embraces hybrid technology. However, BMW isn’t simply following the trend set by competitors; they’re staying true to their roots with a twin-turbocharged V8 powerplant. This 4.4-liter V8 is paired with a substantial electric motor borrowed from the new XM SUV, delivering a combined punch that promises extraordinary power and efficiency.
The Weighty Dilemma
One challenge with hybrid systems is the added weight, which can potentially impact performance. We’ve seen this in action when pitting the XM, laden with its heavy motor and batteries, against the lighter M2. Despite the M2’s lower horsepower, its agility prevailed. This poses a critical question for the upcoming M5: Can it shed enough weight to remain nimble despite the hybrid system’s bulk?
The Quest for More Power
BMW has a storied tradition of outdoing itself with each new M5 generation. This pursuit of relentless performance gains is exemplified in a thrilling video showcasing the standing quarter-mile times of various M5 models throughout history. The trend is clear: each new iteration bests its predecessor. With the impending M5, the challenge is formidable: How do you surpass a lighter, more agile predecessor with the added heft of a hybrid system?
The Solution: Meet the Label Red
Enter the “Label Red,” a moniker that signifies a tuned version of the XM’s hybrid system. Combining the electric motor with the V8 petrol engine results in a staggering 748 horsepower, making it a substantial leap beyond the current M5 Competition. This isn’t merely a starting point; it’s an affirmation of BMW’s commitment to dominance.
A Glimpse into the Future
But why stop there? Future iterations and potential CS models could see the introduction of the 635-horsepower V8 from the M5 CS, paired with the electric motor. This tantalizing prospect could yield an M5 boasting a jaw-dropping 832 horsepower, catapulting it to the pinnacle of BMW’s performance lineup. It would also secure its place as the most potent BMW road car ever produced.
Blazing Speed on the Horizon
The amalgamation of power and hybrid technology places the new M5 squarely in competition with the likes of the AMG GT 63 S, a formidable adversary with its twin-turbo V8 and electric motor. However, performance isn’t solely about power; it’s about balance. BMW’s challenge is to optimize the M5’s weight and battery size, delivering electrifying acceleration that sets new standards.
Exciting Additions: The M5 Touring
Beyond the standard M5 Saloon, BMW enthusiasts have another reason to celebrate: the return of the M5 Touring. These official teaser images from BMW herald the revival of the M5 Touring, the first since the 2007 E61 model. With the same hybrid system as the Saloon, it promises to be the most potent estate car ever manufactured. Enthusiasts can anticipate its arrival in 2024, a bit later than the standard M5.
Pricing and Conclusion
As for the price tag of these remarkable vehicles, one can expect them to command a premium. The standard M5 will likely surpass the current top-tier 5 Series, but the introduction of hybrid components could place it anywhere between £100,000 and £150,000. Future CS models may even eclipse the £170,000 mark. The exact figures will be unveiled when BMW officially introduces the new M5 later this year.
In conclusion, the all-new BMW M5 represents a paradigm shift in the world of high-performance saloons. With its bold design, hybrid powertrain, and unwavering commitment to performance, it’s poised to set a new standard in the industry.
Source Car and Driver