The BMW 5 Series is all-new for 2017. The exterior styling isn't a huge departure from the previous model, but the new 5 Series is more powerful, significantly lighter in weight and packed with a ton of technology that expands its autonomous driving capabilities.
SPEAKER: BMW just unveiled their all new 5 Series for 2017 and it's set to go on sale as early as next month. Now they'll probably have the usual line of 5 Series, but they brought two of the more exciting models here. To my left, we have the 530e iPerformance hybrid. That's a plug-in hybrid as well as a V8 twin turbo charged M550i xDrive. That's a mouthful. Now at first glance, unless you're a BMW fanatic, you might have some difficulty picking out the differences between this model and the previous one, but BMW's actually said that they've cut as much as 220 pounds from the last model, which is a huge difference. Other cool things -- BMW's actually added a new technology that's going to further increase the autonomous capabilities of the 5 Series. We're looking forward to testing those features out for ourselves pretty soon. So now you have an overview of the new 5 Series. If there's anything that you want me to check out personally, let me know in the comments and be sure to subscribe to Edmunds for more videos.
The BMW nameplate is practically synonymous with luxury sport sedans. And the all-new 2017 BMW 5 Series carries on the Bavarian automaker's longstanding tradition of providing shoppers with a selection of models intended to strike a balance between comfort and performance. The styling of the midsize 5 Series hasn't been radically changed. It remains a sleek design, elegant yet muscular, crafted around a cabin that can seat five with a trunk large enough to hold a fair amount of luggage.
For 2017, the 5 Series grows incrementally larger than the outgoing model but sheds up to 137 pounds, thanks to the use of aluminum, magnesium and high-strength steel construction. There are new available advanced chassis systems with Dynamic Damper Control and active steering — which can be combined with xDrive, BMW's all-wheel-drive system — as well as a host of new driver-assist features. Other changes include technology updates, such as a new iDrive user interface, available gesture control and a head-up display.
Powerplant choices include a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which generates 248 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque and comes standard in the base 530i, and a 3.0-liter twin-turbo inline six that comes in the 540i and produces 335 hp and 332 lb-ft of torque. The high-performance M550i, arriving later, is equipped with a twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 engine that puts out 456 hp and 480 lb-ft of torque. All models are equipped with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
EPA fuel economy figures for the 2017 BMW 5 Series have not yet been released.
Handling has always been a BMW strong suit, and the revamped 5 Series is no exception. The new models ride on revamped suspension, double wishbone in front and five-link in the rear, with electronically controlled antiroll bars. Available multiple drive modes — Adaptive, Comfort, Sport and Eco Pro — allow drivers to alter the suspension settings and other characteristics to match conditions and personal taste. And buyers looking for even better handling can opt for the M Sport suspension package, which adds firmer components, lower ride height, larger wheels and performance tires.
The well-designed, upscale interior of the new 5 Series has been moderately revised. There's still plenty of space for front-seat occupants, and an additional 1.2 inches of legroom has been added to the rear compartment. Power sport bucket seats are standard, and heated and cooled versions with massage are available. A plethora of the latest advanced technology, safety and convenience features are either standard or available.
The base 530i comes extremely well equipped with enough comfort and tech equipment to satisfy many buyers, including dual-zone climate control and adaptive cruise control; although a host of packages and optional accessories are available. Moving up to the 540i brings the higher performance of the turbocharged six-cylinder engine and, BMW says, a zero-to-60-mph time of 4.9 seconds. Whatever your preference, let Edmunds help you find the 2017 BMW 5 Series that best meets your needs. 2017 bmw 5 series first drive
BMW and sport sedans go hand in hand, and there's a full roster of models to prove it. The 5 Series, though, has always been at the perfect price point for those wanting a premium sport sedan that could comfortably seat five yet still be enjoyable to drive.
But the market demands more these days from midsize luxury sedans. Improved efficiency is now part of the equation along with increased safety via assisted driving and connected technology. Oh yeah, and it still has to be comfortable, too. This meant BMW couldn't leave well enough alone, so for the 2017 model year there's an all-new lineup of 5 Series sedans.
Lighter, More Efficient and Still Packed With Power
Like all other 5 Series before it, this new 2017 model is available in multiple powertrain and engine combinations. But first, let's start with the basics.
In order to improve efficiency, the chassis has been lightened by up to 137 pounds compared to the previous model. BMW used more aluminum and high-strength steel in strategic places to keep weight down. Most of the exterior body panels are aluminum and have been designed to give the car a slimmer look.
The interior has also been lightened, albeit visually, with a new dash and heavily updated center control area that mirrors the sleeker exterior design. Most importantly, the new dash improves visibility and the overall feeling of space.
Initially, only two variants will be offered: the 530i, with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, and the 540i, with a 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder. Shortly after that, two additional variants will be made available: a plug-in hybrid, the 530e, and a turbocharged V8-equipped performance model, the M550i. The 530i and 540i can be had in either rear- or all-wheel drive, while the 530e and M550i will be available only with all-wheel drive. Regardless of configuration, all 5 Series sedans will feature an eight-speed automatic transmission.
The 530i is rated at 248 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The engine delivers solid shove from a stop, and even at higher speeds, it feels responsive to inputs. You can tell it's working hard in some situations, however, so if you want universally effortless acceleration, the 3.0-liter engine is the better choice. That engine produces 335 hp and 332 lb-ft of torque and delivers smooth torque and power instantly at all points in the rev range.
Unique New Technology
If you're a previous BMW owner, you'll catch onto the latest iDrive user interface very quickly. Even if you're not, it's easy to get accustomed to. The 10.5-inch high-resolution screen now accepts multitouch inputs, so there are multiple ways to interact with the system. The 5 Series also features gesture controls that can accept and reject calls, raise and lower volume, and navigate around the menu structure with a wave of your hand. Gesticulators beware, you may want to turn this feature off because your hand motions will cause iDrive to react.
Other features of the new system include Wi-Fi, wireless charging and wireless Apple CarPlay connectivity. In conjunction with BMW's Connected app, some unique new features are available through your smartphone including a skill from Amazon's Alexa that will enable some basic vehicle monitoring and a built-in LTE modem that can access weather and let you know the likelihood of finding street parking at your destination. Pretty nifty stuff, if you have the patience to learn how to use all of it.
BMW's Display Key is also available on the 5 Series. The Display Key puts a small color display and transceiver inside the key, so that it can receive vehicle status information from the car, and even allow you to start and stop the engine, and either pull in or pull out of a particularly tight parking spot from outside the vehicle. Definitely a cool party trick, but it also causes the key to become humorously large, and it's yet another device that you'll need to keep charged.
During a short rainy drive between San Francisco and Sonoma, both the 530i and the 540i felt more than capable of delivering long-distance comfort and the kind of performance necessary to uphold the 5 Series' reputation as a sport sedan. The smoother power delivery of the 540i makes it the one to get if you like the idea of always having something in reserve, but the 530i will satisfy everyone else.
Overall, there were no surprises. BMW's "just right"-size sedan combines solid engine choices, cutting-edge technology and numerous options wrapped in a svelte, new body. It might not be groundbreaking on any level, but it does all the things a midsize luxury sedan is supposed to do without losing its uniquely German look and feel.
Edmunds attended a manufacturer-sponsored event, to which selected members of the press were invited, to facilitate this report.