Lighter, faster and...all-wheel drive?
The current BMW M5 is a great car but it's not considered a great M car. Previous M5s, notably its V10-powered E60 predecessor, are considered to embody the M car high-performance spirit better than today's F10 generation. Many have criticized BMW for focusing more on luxury and refinement than performance, and BMW has taken note. Development of the next generation M5, due to arrive in 2017, continues at full steam and our spy photographers have caught a prototype mule out testing in southern Spain.
This isn't the first time we've seen an M5 mule but now some of the camouflage is beginning to drop slowly but surely. For example, on one of the prototypes the camo is exchanged for a black front-end bar that helps us see the lines of the air intakes despite the fact the entire front is covered. From what we can see here, it's pretty obvious those new front air intakes will be larger than those on today's M5. Codenamed F90, the next M5 will stick with the twin-turbo V8 but output, obviously, will increase. Around 600 hp sounds about right. Driving dynamics will also be improved because they have to be.
As we already mentioned, one of the biggest drawbacks to the F10 is that it handles too much like a large sedan. BMW M is fixing that by shaving weight and making lots of chassis refinements. But perhaps the biggest news for the next M5 is that, for the first time, it'll offer all-wheel drive. If all goes to plan, we'll be seeing the 2017 BMW M5 debut possibly as early as Geneva next March.