Review: New BMW 5 Series – Performance, Comfort, and Tech Unveiled

The BMW 5 Series has a remarkable track record, winning 27 What Car? Awards, highlighting its consistent performance. BMW keeps the model updated, including a new fully electric BMW i5. The range starts with the 205bhp 520i petrol variant and includes two plug-in hybrids: 530e (295bhp) and 550e (482bhp). Competing with the Audi A6 and Mercedes E-Class, the 5 Series stands out for its sharp handling but has a jittery ride on rough surfaces. Interior accommodations are luxurious, with a user-friendly infotainment system. While buying costs are high, the 5 Series is more affordable than the E-Class and offers desirable company car options.

Discover the BMW 5 Series: A Comprehensive Review


Hey there! If you’re curious about the world of automobiles, especially about the latest and greatest vehicles, you’re in the right place. Today, we’re diving into the iconic BMW 5 Series. This model has been around for years and has continuously evolved to stay ahead of its competition. In fact, Lionel Messi might have won football’s Ballon d’Or eight times, but the BMW 5 Series has bagged a whopping 27 What Car? Awards over the years! That’s some serious credibility.

Before we jump in, it’s worth noting that the 5 Series is available in several versions, including the fully electric BMW i5. Today, however, we’ll focus on the other variants.

Performance and Drive

What it’s like to drive and how quiet it is

In its entry-level form, the BMW 520i isn’t sluggish at all. It goes from 0-62 mph in just 7.5 seconds. But, if you’re looking for more oomph, there are two plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) to consider: the 530e and 550e, which produce 295bhp and 482bhp, respectively.

Key Highlights:

  • 520i: 205bhp, 2.0-litre mild-hybrid petrol engine.
  • 530e: 6.3 seconds to 62 mph.
  • 550e: Just 4.5 seconds to 62 mph.
  • Electric-only ranges: 530e can go 63 miles, 550e manages 55 miles on a full charge.

Driving Overview


  • Precise steering
  • Tightly controlled body movements
  • Quiet engine at steady cruising


  • Noticeable pause in automatic gearbox during sudden shifts
  • Jittery over poorly surfaced roads

BMWs tend to perform best with adaptive suspension, but even the standard setup on the 520i does a fantastic job. The steering is precise and well-weighted, making for a confident driving experience.


The interior arrangement, fit, and finish

The BMW 5 Series boasts a luxurious interior. Every variant comes with a comfortable and supportive driver’s seat that includes electric adjustment for height and backrest angle. Lumbar support is also electrically adjustable, which is a nice touch.

Key Features:

  • Good forward visibility: Rearview camera and all-round parking sensors come as standard.
  • High-tech dashboard: Standard 12.3-inch digital dashboard alongside a 14.9-inch central infotainment screen.
  • Adaptive LED lights: Adjust themselves to avoid dazzling other road users.

One of the standout features is the infotainment system. Unlike its competitors, the 5 Series includes physical control dials and shortcut buttons between the front seats, making it far less distracting to use while driving.

Interior Supervision


  • User-friendly infotainment system
  • Luxurious materials


  • Rear visibility is somewhat limited

And let’s not forget the standard DAB radio and Harman Kardon stereo. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come as standard, along with wireless phone charging.

Passenger and Boot Space

How it deals with people and disorder

When it comes to space, the BMW 5 Series doesn’t disappoint. Front-seat legroom and headroom are excellent, even if you opt for the glass roof. There are plenty of convenient storage options, including cup holders and large door bins.

Key Highlights:

  • Boot Space: 520 liters in mild-hybrid and PHEV versions, 490 liters in the electric i5.
  • Rear Seats: Split-fold in a 40/20/40 configuration, perfect for versatile cargo needs.

If you’re looking for more practicality, the BMW 5 Series Touring estate can carry up to 570 liters of luggage.

Practicality Overview


  • Spacious for four passengers
  • Folding rear seats for added flexibility


  • Not very comfortable for the center rear passenger

Buying and Owning

Daily costs and how reliable and safe it is

The BMW 5 Series might seem expensive compared to the Audi A6, but it’s more affordable than the Mercedes E-Class on a like-for-like basis. And when considering company car tax bills, the 530e PHEV finds a middle ground.

Trim Options:

  • M Sport: Includes 19-inch alloy wheels, leather upholstery, climate control, and heated front seats.
  • M Sport Pro: Adds black exterior highlights, illuminated front grille, and 20-inch wheels.

For those looking for added luxury, the Comfort Plus Package is worth the spend, offering features like keyless entry, a heated steering wheel, and four-zone climate control.

Cost Overview


  • More affordable than a Mercedes E-Class
  • 530e is ideal for company car usage


  • All-electric cars offer more savings for BIK tax payers
  • Some essential equipment costs extra

In terms of reliability, BMW finished 12th out of 32 in the 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey, which is above Audi, Jaguar, and Mercedes but below Lexus.


The BMW 5 Series has a lot to offer, whether you’re talking about its driving performance, luxurious interior, or practicality. While it may not be perfect, it certainly holds its ground against formidable competitors like the Audi A6 and Mercedes E-Class.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the BMW 5 Series a luxury car?

  • The 5 Series falls into the executive car category, making it slightly smaller and more affordable than a full-fledged luxury car, yet plenty luxurious by most standards.

What competes with the BMW 5 Series?

  • Its fiercest competitor is the Mercedes E-Class, followed by the Audi A6 and Jaguar XF.

How much does a BMW 5 Series cost?

  • Even the entry-level version exceeds £50,000, but significant discounts are available through New Car Deals services.

That’s a wrap! If you’re in the market for a high-performance, luxurious, and practical sedan, the BMW 5 Series should be at the top of your list.

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