Late last week BWM finally pulled the wraps off the long-awaited 5-series replacement, causing a lot of head-scratching among its fans and the general public. The unaffiliated were left wondering why BMW had re-revealed the 7-series, especially when looking at the front lights and the detailing on the side of the car, while BMW aficionados were left staring at the shape of the C-pillar and wondering “is this just a very elaborate facelift?”.
In fact, the new 5-series is entirely new, and significant in many ways. First, it uses the same CLAR architecture that underpins the very-well-received 7-series, which makes the car up to 100kg lighter than the old one, even if it does without the fancy carbon fiber bits of its bigger brother. Second, it marks a further step for BMW in an effort to make its cars appeal to all sorts of people and wallets: not only will this one be available as a sedan and a wagon, with a range of petrol, diesel and hybrid engines, but it will also be available with four (!) different chassis setups: standard, sport, electronically-controlled dampers and the “full hog”, which adds active anti-roll bars to the latter. Makes you nostalgic for the days when BMW offered one (perfect) chassis tuning. Interestingly, with all these options available air suspension is notable by its absence, even though these days Mercedes-Benz offers it on the C-class and Audi on the Q5. Finally, the 5-series is also a (sad, to many fans) confirmation that BMW has truly gone back to its “one sausage, different lengths” styling approach. But hey – if it ain’t broke, and its working for the other premium German brands, why fix it?
So, what do you think? Let us know in the comments and poll below: