BMW officially announces new M5 super-sedan

Andross Moonah - CAP staff
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In the realm of the automotive industry there are news stories, and then there are news events. While a new concept car or family hatchback definitely classifies as news, the debut of a renewed motoring icon grabs the attention of enthusiasts the world over and lures them in to read more.

One such event comes courtesy of BMW and centers on the official debut of the new fifth generation M5 super-sedan. Since 1984, the M5 has been heralded for its awesome levels of performance and its luxurious refinement.

The M5 has always been based on BMW's popular 5 Series sedan and the fifth generation model is no different. The new M5 resembles its 5 Series kin, but is much more sculpted and muscular looking. Key styling features include menacing front bodywork, flared wheel arches, side air intakes, quad exhaust pipes, and 19-inch wheels with 20s available as an option.

Powering the new M5 is a 4.4-litre V8 engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology. The engine develops a stratospheric 560 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque. BMW claims that its latest M5 will accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in a supercar-like 4.4 seconds before attaining a top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph). However, a new M5 outfitted with the M Driver's Package can hit a top speed of 305 km/h (190 mph) according to BMW. In spite of the eye-watering performance figures, the new M5's 4.4-litre V8 engine is claimed to achieve a 30-percent reduction in fuel consumption in comparison to the previous M5's 5.0-litre V10 unit.

Coupled to the engine is a seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission with Drivelogic (M DCT Drivelogic). It features Launch Control, Low Speed Assistance, and also a parking mode. In addition to being fully automatic, the double-clutch transmission can be shifted with steering wheel mounted paddle shifters.

Like the engine and transmission, the new M5's suspension has been designed with high performance in mind. The Active M Differential helps to optimize traction during spirited driving and Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) aids the driver by intelligently applying the brakes when the tires lose grip and start to skid, and can even reduce the engine's power output momentarily in order to maintain adhesion to the road. Additionally, the new M5 features Dynamic Damper Control that allows the driver to adjust the suspensions firmness via three settings, Comfort, Sport, and Sport Plus.

Other features of the fifth generation M5 include an M-specific Head-Up Display, Adaptive Headlights, BMW Night Vision with pedestrian recognition, BMW's Lane Departure Warning System, BMW's Lane Change Warning System, and even internet usage and real-time traffic data.

Will the new M5 reset the performance class standard like its forebears have been doing with each new generation over three decades? Very likely.

©(Copyright Canadian Auto Press)

Topics: Sport Sedan, BMW, 2012, M5, $99,999+,

Organizations: BMW

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