BMW i5 and 5-series Touring revealed – here’s what to expect from the M5 estate
BMW's new 5-series Touring will spawn an M5 estate later this year – this is what we know so far
Off the back of the mighty M3 Touring, BMW is preparing to launch what could be the ultimate fast family car: a new M5 Touring. The nameplate will be revived this year having last appeared on the E61-generation model, and this – the newly unveiled 5-series Touring – provides a glimpse of what's to come from the Audi RS6 rival.
The 5-series Touring will initially be offered in plug-in hybrid 530e form, sitting alongside two electric versions – the i5 eDrive40 and dual-motor M60. The 530e uses a turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine and a single electric motor to generate 295bhp and 332lb ft of torque, good enough for a 6.4sec 0-62mph sprint. Pricing for this model is yet to be confirmed.
The i5 eDrive40, meanwhile, costs £69,040 and offers 335bhp and 295lb ft from its single rear motor, completing the 0-62mph sprint in 6.1sec. The eDrive40 can drive 348 miles between charges, compared to 357 miles for the saloon version.
Until the M5 arrives, the £99,090 i5 M60 Touring will sit at the top of the tree with its dual-motor powertrain. The M60 is rated at 593bhp and 586lb ft, and its 3.9sec 0-62mph time is just a tenth slower than that of the saloon. Standard-fit rear axle steering, adaptive dampers and a 5mm ride height drop help harness that extra performance, and the M60 can achieve 314 miles from a full battery.
The new 5-series Touring is larger than its predecessor in every dimension (it’s 97mm longer, 32mm wider and 17mm taller), offering more cabin space and a sizable 570-litre boot. BMW has also worked to optimise its weight distribution – which is almost a perfect 50:50 split – and the rigidity of the platform to provide a strong basis for the Touring’s dynamics.
All Tourings feature self-levelling rear air suspension, and the i5 M60 is available with a full suite of chassis electronics as part of the Adaptive M Chassis Professional pack, which includes active anti-roll bars. Whether the M5 Touring will offer similar tech or a more conventional performance-oriented setup remains to be seen.
What we do know is that it will offer considerably more power than the previous 616bhp M5 Competition, thanks to a V8-hybrid powertrain derived from the XM SUV. This will combine BMW’s S68 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 with an electric motor integrated into the gearbox, channelling through an xDrive four-wheel drive system. The 738bhp XM Label Red offers a glimpse at what this setup is capable of.
Visually, the new M5 will be bursting at the seams with bespoke wide-track bodywork comprising new front wings, sills and rear quarter panels. Given the M division’s stellar recent form, we expect it to give Audi’s RS6 a serious workout – a twin-test surely beckons…