BMW 5-Series: BMW’s 5th Symphony

BMW 5-Series

The BMW 5-Series has somewhat fallen down the pecking order, as it has lost some of the luster that made it such a hot commodity in days gone by. Especially, with new players like the Volvo S90 and Hyundai Genesis, BMW really needs to revamp the 5-Series or face the prospect of being phased out. However, this is the second bestselling BMW in the market and still the de facto go-to executive car for most. The 5-Series is incredibly important to BMW and it accounted for 50% of BMW’s profits in 2010. It is the second bestselling car from BMW after the 3-Series, and it reached the 5 million mark back in January, 2008.

What’s in a Name?

The 5-Series got its name from being the fifth car in the “new series” after the Isetta and V8 eras.

The History

The 5-Series’ first generation came out back in 1972, where it replaced the BMW New Class. Known internally as the E12, the 5-Series lasted production until 1981 (1984 for the South African market). It was based on the 1970 BMW Garmisch 2002ti Geneva show car. Styling for the E12 was done by Paul Bracq and Pietro Frua.

Current Model

Currently, BMW has reached its sixth generation, which is internally known as F10/F11/F07. It was released back in 2011, and its production is still here to date. Based on the F01 7 Series, the 5-Series new improvements include the use of dual ball joint short-long arm suspension that replace the MacPherson strut suspensions used in its predecessor, and a rear multilink suspension.

The Variants

The BMW is available as either a hatch or a sedan and here are some of its trims:

  • SE
  • Luxury
  • M Sport

BMW 5-Series

The Powertrain

Powering the 5-Series are either a 3L turbo six cylinder, 2L four cylinder, V8 or petrol-electric hybrid. The most efficient engine has to be the 187 bhp 2L four that is able to go 0-62 mph in 7.9 seconds on the manual and 7.7 seconds on the auto. What’s so economical about this engine is that it has an impressive fuel economy of 68.9 mpg and 109 g/km. As for the performance trim M5 it gets a 592 bhp V8 engine that replace the naturally aspirated V10 engine used by its predecessor. This engine manages 28.5 mpg of fuel efficiency. All the engines are paired with an 8-speed auto. The 5-Series is offered in all-wheel drive configuration except for the hybrid.


Entering the cabin, all will be happy with the return of the center console. With its predecessor, BMW had tried to be different, and had new design cues. However in the current generation, the 5-Series reverted back to BMW’s traditional look.


Nothing much has changed really still looks like its predecessor except for some really subtle tweaks here and there. Nothing was wrong with its predecessor, however BMW come of a little conservative here. They shouldn’t be afraid of experimentation here and there, you never know.

Our Verdict

When BMW makes a car, you can expect one supreme characteristic, it’s got to be fun to drive, and the 5-Series are no different. However, there are other cars like the Mercedes E-Class and the Jaguar XF to consider. Having a great ride shouldn’t overshadow the need to match this with great styling. The 5-Series is as great as it has ever been, but maybe starting to bore its client base. However, looking at its sales the 5-Series still has enough to cause ripples in the market. In a nutshell, the 5-Series is a great executive car that may need a little more tweaking to recapture some of its lost luster.

Buying a 5-Series, will mean you’ll have to budget from $ 50,200.

Is the 5-Series losing grips or is it still thee executive car? Have your say, leave a comment.

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