With a new engine and self-driving capabilities, Tesla should be worried.
The next-generation F90 BMW M5 is being born into a strange time indeed. The original M5 started its life as a subversive car that lived a dual life: a practical sedan with the athletic aspirations of a Porsche. Now the new M5 has a lot more on its plate. It has to be larger to please buyers in China and keep up with the trend of ballooning automobiles. It also must pass emissions regulations without cheating. Oh, and it still needs to make incredible horsepower figures.
It also has to retain a certain degree of driving purity even as the demand for technology grows, and all of these things pose challenges for the M5. The last attempt at this resulted in the F10 M5, a car that failed to keep the M5 identity because it had too many hoops to jump through, which resulted in the focus switching from the driver to luxury. BMW wants to right these wrongs, so this means that the F90, which is currently undergoing testing, will certainly be an interesting car. Here’s how it will go. According to BMW Blog, the M5 will debut in Paris and will show off some reality TV show weight loss figures that will be brought on by the use of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic and other exotic materials like high-strength steel
Estimates peg the loss of lard at 100 kg, or 220 about pounds. Previously, rumors had said that the M5 would get a power plant similar to the M4, but horsepower goals for the F90 sit at around 600 hp given the competition. Despite the M4’s engine making an impressive amount of power given its 3.0-liter displacement, going past the 600-horsepower mark (some claim the M5 will have 620 horsepower) calls for something larger. To hold the package together the eight-speed M Steptronic transmission will morph into a dual-clutch system and like the X6 M, all-wheel drive with rear-wheel bias will come standard. We may have reason to celebrate because a source mentioned that a manual might make it to the US. Now for the next hurdle, tech.
Bimmers have recently had a hard time balancing too much technology with driving purity. The F90 will be no exception because it will get technology straight from the 7 Series, including autonomous driving, Driving Assistant Plus, Parking Assistant Plus and Remote Control Parking and Connected Drive. Meanwhile, laser lights should adorn the front end of the M5, if so spec’d by the owner. Even though the F10 M5 was not exactly what the fans expected, BMW is usually pretty compliant with customer demands. The fact that the M2 even exists, despite that it eats up some M4 sales, is a testament to this. It also goes to show that BMW still knows how to make a good driver’s car. Despite the firsts, expect a car that is fun to drive fast.