Although the BMW 5 Series is still regarded as the benchmark of executive sedans, the Bavarian carmaker has once again, raised the proverbial bar to new levels of design, technology, efficiency and dynamism.
Known internally as a Life Cycle Improvement (LCI), the G30 BMW 5 Series has received such a comprehensive list of updates that it is, for all intents and purposes, a new model. Similarly, the G32 BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo has been simultaneously refreshed to provide customers with a longer, five-door alternative.
What’s new in the BMW 5 Series?
From the outset, both cars are immediately recognisable as leaders in their segments with an extensively updated exterior design that heightens the cars’ presence and sportiness. For most observers, the focal point is the new BMW kidney grille, now wider and taller. On either side, restyled LED headlamps with distinctive L-shaped light graphics compliment the new, three-dimensional rear light clusters. Trapezoidal exhaust tips complete the, telltale cues to differentiate the latest generation of BMW cars.
The M Sport package adds even more muscularity to the cars with an all-new front apron that has dynamically proportioned features. This is underscored by a high gloss shadow line while the M Sport brake calipers are available in either blue – as they have always been – or in a new red finish.
For the first time, BMW has created something even more special – the M Sport Edition. Just 1,000 units of this limited-edition BMW 5 Series are produced worldwide and a few examples will be available in Singapore. Available in either Tanzanite Blue or Donington Grey metallic paint finishes, this model is also exclusively fitted with BMW Individual Air Performance Wheels. In addition to a reduction in unsprung weight while also reducing the drag coefficient for better handling and fuel efficiency respectively.
The new M Sport Edition 5 Series also comes with M multifunction seats – previously reserved for the BMW M5 – with integral head restraints and optimised side and shoulder support. Their range of functions includes electric adjustment of the seat position, backrest angle and width, thigh support and head restraint height.
More than skin deep
For both cars, the improvements go well beyond the sheet metal. All versions of the new BMW 5 Series and BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo benefit from 48-volt (48v) mild-hybrid technology.
The mild-hybrid system helps to lighten the engine’s workload and at times boost its power. In tandem, this lowers fuel consumption and emissions while improving responsiveness.
The 48v mild hybrid system includes a second battery. This greatly increases the ways in which Bake Energy Regeneration can be utilised. Under coasting or braking, a generator converts kinetic energy into electricity which is stored in the 48v battery.
The energy stored in the second battery is used when more power is needed for acceleration or maintaining the coasting speed. The extra 11hp produced by the 48v system lessens the load of the Internal Combustion engine (ICE). In certain situations, the ICE automatically shuts down to further save fuel and deliver a cleaner ride. This function works in both ECO Pro and Comfort modes so it can be utilised under a wider range of driving conditions.
In Singapore, the new BMW 5 Series will be available with a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine that is tuned to produce 184hp and 290Nm of torque for the new BMW 520i and BMW 520i Luxury Line.
The engines of the new BMW 530i M Sport and BMW 530i M Sport Edition, on the other hand, come in a higher state of tune to make a maximum of 252hp and 350Nm of torque. All-new BMW 5 Series and BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo models are fitted with 8-speed Steptronic automatic transmissions as standard.
Leading edge tech
Inside the new BMW 5 Series and BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo, the fully digital infotainment systems take centre stage. Both the BMW Live Cockpit Plus (standard on the new BMW 520i) and the BMW Live Cockpit Professional (standard on all other variants) are powered by BMW Operating System 7.0 that enables a plethora of extra digital services. These include the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant with extended functionality. For starters, the driver is greeted by name, and can use their personal account to access a wide range of stored settings; seat and wing mirror positions or favourite locations to drive to.
A 10.25-inch central display is now standard for the new BMW 520i and BMW 530e while all the other BMW 5 Series variants are fitted with bigger 12.3-inch displays.
Smartphone Integration function is now compatiwith both wireless versions of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Remote Software upgrade is another new feature that enables improved vehicle functions and additional digital services to be imported into the car over the air.
One such feature is the new BMW Digital Key for iPhone that enables drivers to use their smartphones to operate their cars. The car’s owner can also share access with up to five guests including a configurable car access option for younger drivers to restrict performance and radio volume for example.
New BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo
Those who want more versatility and a different style from an executive car will find it in the new BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo. For starters, its 3,070mm wheelbase is 95mm longer than the new BMW 5 Series for more rear passenger legroom and ride refinement. While a slightly higher seating position makes access in and out of the car easier.
At 1,902mm, the new BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo is also 34mm wider. While the extra width also allows for more elbow room , particularly for rear seat occupants.
Besides adding a new dimension to the design, the five-door body style of the new BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo offers a larger load opening. Handy for placing large or bulky items into car with ease. With the rear seats folded, active lifestyle equipment such as bicycles can be accommodated. In terms of luggage space, this car can accommodate between 600 to 1,800-litres of cargo volume. This is 40 to 100-litres more than the new BMW 5 Series.
Two versions of the new BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo will be offered in Singapore. The BMW 630i Luxury Line and the BMW 630i M Sport are both powered by the 252hp 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine.
In the cabin, BMW Cockpit Live Professional is standard along with the 12.3-inch Control Display. As with the new BMW 5 Series, drivers of the new BMW 6 Series Gran Turismo can look forward to the same levels of tech. New application and connectivity possibilities and enables extended personalisation made possible by BMW Operating System 7.0.
The range at a glance
BMW 520i / BMW 520i Luxury Line
Engine: In-line 4-cylinder turbocharged, 48v mild hybrid 1,998 cc Power: 184 hp at 5,000 – 6,500 rpm Torque: 290 Nm at 1,350 – 4,250 rpm
Transmission: 8-speed automatic, RWD Acceleration (0 – 100 km/h): 7.9 seconds (claimed) Top speed: 235 km/h (claimed) Fuel consumption (combined): TBA VES Band: TBA
BMW 530i M Sport / BMW 530i M Sport Edition
Engine: In-line 4-cylinder turbocharged, 48v mild hybrid,1,998 cc Power: 252 hp at 5,200 – 6,500 rpm Torque: 350 Nm at 1,450 – 4,800 rpm
Transmission: 8-speed automatic, RWD Acceleration (0 – 100 km/h): 6.4 seconds (claimed) Top speed: 250 km/h (claimed) Fuel consumption (combined): 5.6 L/100 km – M Sport Edition only VES Band: B – M Sport Edition only
BMW 630i Gran Turismo Luxury Line / BMW 630i Gran Turismo M Sport
Engine: In-line 4-cylinder turbocharged, 48v mild hybrid, 1,998 cc Power: 258 hp at 5,000 – 6,500 rpm Torque: 400 Nm at 1,550 – 4,400 rpm