The design has been subtly changed from the last generation, with Adrian van Hooydonk, BMW’s vice-president of design, preferring to evolve the
design in a way that emulates the key attributes of the larger BMW 7 Series.
The grille is narrower and wider, as are the headlights. There is a new line
that runs from the trademark Hofmeister kink, to the front of the car, before
turning back on itself to give the car a stronger and more muscular profile.
The new BMW 5 Series is built on BMW’s new Cluster Architecture
Platform, the same platform as the new BMW 7 Series. It is a full 100kg
lighter than its predecessor, in spite of being 36mm longer, 6mm wider, and
2mm higher. Importantly, the wheelbase is 7mm longer, which might not
seem like much, but translates into more interior space, particularly for rear
seat occupants, who are now surrounded by even more luxury.
Major changes to the chassis, combined with the reduced weight and
the new integral active rear-wheel steering, translate into a package that is
not only business class, but even more athletic than the generations that
Both the diesel (520d or 530d) and the petrol (530i or 540i) models provide a level of performance that will appeal to those who seek that pure driving pleasure. Power ranges from 140kW in the 520d to 250kW in the 540i, but it is all about how that power is delivered — and the new BMW 5 Series impresses at every push of the throttle. All models deliver on the athletic promise, enhanced further by the feeling of increased agility. The steering feels like an extension of the driver, as you turn into the corner and the car responds perfectly to your demands.