BMW’s beloved M5 is now in its sixth generation, more advanced than ever if not quite as good looking as previous incarnations. The grandaddy of the high performance super saloon, the latest edition is set to launch on Irish shores in February 2018, complete with a rebooted 4.4L V8 engine, a new all-wheel drive system (m xDrive) specific to the M-badge as standard, an eight-speed automatic transmission (Drivelogic allows for quicker gear changes), and performance figures that make the M5 the fastest and most powerful 5 Series BMW has produced to date.
Think 592bhp, 750Nm torque, 0-100km/h in 3.4 seconds and a top speed of 250 km/h, thanks to a variety of clever ideas from BMW engineers, such as new turbochargers, higher injection pressure, improved cooling systems and an oil supply designed for the race track and capable of dealing with high G acceleration. Its new platform is more rigid than before, but it’s lighter too (by 25kg).
If you enjoy a tailored driving experience, you can fiddle with the engine, gearbox and suspension modes until you find the sweet spot. Though four-wheel drive is always ready to rock, power is only diverted to the front wheels once the rear set reach their limit. If you fancy a bit of drifting, switching the stability control off will funnel power to the rear wheels alone. We imagine there’ll be quite a lot of that.
There’s also been a few exterior updates, like the redesigned front bumper with larger air openings to supply the cooling systems and brakes, an aluminium bonnet, and a redesigned rear diffuser. Inside there’s space for four passengers and quite a bit of luggage in the 520L boot, the comfort you’d expect from a 5 Series, and plenty of equipment – a large and reconfigured digital display, head-up display, and M multi functional seats as standard.
If you’re expecting quite a stiff price, you’d be right – RRP will be a cool €163,800 here in Ireland. Given CO2 emissions of 241g/km it won’t be cheap to tax either, weighing in at €2,350. It’s a lot of money, but you get a lot of car.