Motoring

Updated BMW 5 Series headed to SA

The BMW 5 Series has, since its inception been a segment leader.

The BMW 5 Series has, since its inception been a segment leader. The car blends performance, technology and luxury and the result are what many consider to be the benchmark within the executive sedan segment. In recent years, SUV’s have taken pride of place but the latest BMW 5 series aims to draw buyers back to the segment.

The latest BMW 5 Series features subtle enhancements which add a modern touch to the overall look and feel of the car. One of the most noticeable changes comes in the form of the double L-shaped Day-Time Running lights fitted to the enhanced LED headlights. The front bumper has also been revised and there is a new lightweight, drag-reducing Individual Air Performance Wheel option.

The rear of the new 5 Series features new LED tail-lights with black edging and an L-shaped graphic that combines the rear light and brake lights into a single feature, while the exhaust-end finishers are trapezoidal on all derivatives. BMW will also be adding a more aggressive M-Sport body kit if so optionally selected which sees sportier bumpers, wheels and other design elements.

The interior, however, features equally as impressive updates as the exterior. The focus is on technology and the BMW 5 Series has always been jam-packed. This latest offering includes automatic climate control with extended features as standard throughout the range as is the touch-sensitive 10.25-inch Control Display (upgradable to a 12.3-inch unit). What lies within the Control Display is just as noteworthy. The BMW Live Cockpit Plus and the optional BMW Live Cockpit Professional are underpinned by the brand’s latest Operating System 7 which now includes Intelligent Personal Assistant, together with a host of extra digital services, including a cloud-based navigation system that updates real-time traffic data at regular intervals.

There have been further enhancements to what can be found under the surface in the form of a 48V mild-hybrid system on the 4- and 6-cylinder 5 Series derivatives. The starter-generator and a second battery significantly increase the amount of brake energy that can be regenerated and stored. The system can be used to power the car’s electronics as well as provide an extra 8kW to the engine when needed for overtaking or off-the-line acceleration. The mild-hybrid setup also benefits efficiency by assisting the engine when driving at constant speeds and improves comfort when the Auto Start-Stop and coasting functions are in use.

The BMW 5 Series in this latest guise also offers updated driver aids. The latest iteration of the optional Integral Active Steering system can aid manoeuvring by turning the 5 Series’ rear wheels as required at speeds under 3kph and the Lane Departure Warning system (included with the optional Driving Assistant) now features a lane-return function through steering assistance.

BMW South Africa will also be introducing the latest 5 Series in M550i xDrive guise. This particular derivative features a 4.4-litre TwinPower Turbo motor that develops 390 kW. While no news of the updated BMW M5 has surfaced, BMW South Africa has stated that it will only introduce the Competition version rounding off the range which will include the 520d, 530i and M550i. One can expect to see the latest 5 Series in dealerships towards the end of this year with pricing revealed closer to the time.

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