Wednesday 16 November 2011

Road - A new 'M'

First introduced 25 years ago, BMW has released details of its latest M5 saloon which goes on sale this month. This fifth generation of sophisticated tarmac tearaways has moved the game on to a new level.

The new twin-scroll turbocharged 4.4 litre V8 churns out 560 hp and generates an asphalt rippling 680 Nm of torque through its 7 speed double-clutch transmission. This translates into a 4.4 second, nought to 62 mph sprint and 155 mph (limited) top speed. Another impressive figure is the acceleration time from rest to 124 mph – 13 seconds!

The 7 speed transmission offers manual (S) and fully automated (D) shift options, with three programmes in each, allowing the driver to select sport, comfort or efficient driving styles via a rocker switch.

Naturally the chassis has been tickled to cope and includes for the first time an Active M differential with electronic damping control.

Inside the 19 inch rims are sets of 6 piston brake callipers with BMW claiming that new pad materials will resist fade even under repeated heavy braking.

There are no claims that the machine has been developed on the Nurburgring (as is fashionable these days) but then they don’t need to. The ‘M’ series reputation speaks for itself.

Unfortunately, pedigree comes at a cost. In this case, £73,040.

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