Performance – Powering the latest generation BMW M5 is the same engine that did duty on its predecessor but the motor has been optimised further for improved performance, higher output at 600 HP and an improved peak torque of 750 Nm. The result is 0-100 km/hr comes up in just 3.4 seconds which is blisteringly fast for a 4-door sedan while it’s not just outright acceleration where the M5 excels. There is good flow of power throughout the rev band, in fact, it’s so peppy lower down with almost no turbo lag that you would question the existence of the twin turbos.
The 2018 BMW M5 uses a traditonal torque converter transmission
The mid-range is punchy too but it’s in the top-end where the BMW M5 absolutely screams, redlining close to 7000 RPM. You can go from absolute silence to madness with a a flick of a button as the active exhausts really make quite the racket, they pop, crack and make quite a racket on accelerating and downshifting. The 8-speed torque converter gearbox is super quick with shifts and you can manually take control of cogs using either the steering mounted paddles or the gear stick. The M5 has multiple drive modes and you can configure the suspension, engine, gearbox and even the steering as per your liking.
The car has launch control to get the best acceleration timing and power is channelled to all four wheels. Feeling adventurous, you can turn off traction control while maintaining all-wheel drive or opt for rear wheel drive only (traction control is completely off) which is more like a drift mode. With so much thrust from the motor, don’t expect efficiency and the M5 returns between 3-5 km/l, depending on the driving style. Top speed is limited to 250 km/hr but can be increased to 305 km/hr after purchasing the M Driver’s package (an M training voucher is also given with the purchase).
Driving Dynamics – Due to the 4-wheel drive layout, the BMW M5 has added weight but is still lighter than its predecessor, thanks to the use of carbon core technology. It feels light and the engine revs so fast that there is some amount of fidgetiness at full pelt. The M5 feels eager around the corners and with everything set to maximum (the steering and suspension to be in Sport+, the other modes are Comfort and Sport), body roll is very well contained and the car feels tight around the bends. However, you do have to work a bit to get the car pointing exactly where you want.
The ride isn’t that bad and that makes the M5 easy to live with on a daily basis
In spite of the low profile rubber, the ride quality is quite good and the M5 feels composed over bad roads, it does crash through the big ones though. The ground clearance is low but there is no issue on speed-breakers. The M5 has excellent stopping power and the perforated brakes offer good feel and feedback. A slew of electronic systems work to ensure power is channelled smoothly, it’s more rear biased in 4WD Sport mode and thus let’s you play around a bit.