Following on from the comprehensive update to the regular BMW 5 Series, revealed last month, the Munich outfit has applied the same to the range-topper, the BMW M5. The mechanical changes are limited, but the M5 gets styling and tech revisions. As before, it will only be sold in Ireland in the top-spec Competition guise, expected to cost from €169,020.
M5 gets the look...
Naturally, as this is a new BMW, it gets a larger grille than before. It's more upright, wider and deeper than that of the outgoing M5 Competition, though it keeps its moody black surround and vertical bars. The front bumper and lights are new, as well. A high-gloss black finish is applied to the mesh on the M 'gills' aft of the front wheels, the door mirrors and the subtle boot spoiler at the back. The new rear bumper has a black insert, as well, while the restyled quad exhaust system outlets are in Black Chrome.
Five new paint colours have been added to the palette: Brands Hatch Grey, Motegi Red metallic, Tanzanite Blue II metallic, Aventurine Red II metallic and Frozen Bluestone metallic. There's also a new design of 20-inch alloy wheel, borrowed from the BMW M8, we believe.
More tweaks inside
Also from the BMW M8 is more direct access to setting up the car to your preference via the infotainment system. Press the M Mode button briefly to choose between Road and Sport settings, or hold it down longer to access the Track mode. These affect the information displayed and the level of driver assistance that is active. In Track mode, for example, the assistance systems are disabled, while the infotainment screen and audio system are turned off, for minimum distraction.
Before you do that, you might want to try out the new Setup button, as that opens a screen that allows you pick and choose different settings for the engine, suspension, steering and M xDrive all-wheel-drive system. As before, there are prominent red M1 and M2 buttons on the steering wheel to access a pre-configured combination of settings for the M xDrive, stability control, engine, transmission, damping and steering characteristics, as well as the appearance of the head-up display.
Other than that, there's a new upholstery option and the central touchscreen has been enlarged from 10.25- to 12.3 inches across the diagonal.
Twin-turbo V8 unchanged
BMW didn't see fit to alter the mighty twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 under the M5's bonnet. That means 625hp at 6,000rpm and 750Nm of torque produced from 1,800-5,860rpm. The 0-100km/h time is quoted as 3.3 seconds and top speed is limited to 250km/h, unless the buyer opts for the M Driver's Package, which ups it to 305km/h. Power is fed to all four wheels via an eight-speed M Steptronic automatic transmission with Drivelogic. The M xDrive system is rear-biased, even in the default 4WD setting, while the driver can switch it to 4WD Sport and even 2WD, which means all power to the rear wheels only. An electronically controlled limited slip differential is fitted to the rear axle.
Variable damping and steering are fitted, as before, but the M5's dampers are new, coming from the BMW M8 Gran Coupe. M Compound brakes are standard, which use blue-painted callipers, though now, buyers can opt for black or red-painted callipers for the first time. Or upgrade to the M Carbon ceramic brakes with their gold-painted callipers.