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Just a few months before the car’s official debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show, BMW has decided it was time to reveal the official specs on the fifth generation M5 sports sedan. After seeing the first concept version at the 2011 Shanghai Motor Show, now we can see the M5 in all its glory. And we sure like what we are seeing.

The M5 name was used for the first time back in 1984, but since then, the car has evolved into an impressive sedan that combines track potential with the comprehensive practicality of a luxurious business sedan. The new generation brings a high-revving 4.4-liter V8 engine with an M TwinPower Turbo package that delivers an impressive 560 hp at 6,000 – 7,000 rpm and a peak torque of 502 lb-ft from 1,500 rpm. The model will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds and, when the speed limiter is removed, is capable of hitting an impressive top speed of 190 mph. Despite these impressive performance numbers, the car will deliver an estimated fuel economy of 28.5 mpg.

UPDATE 06/22/12: BMW has unveiled a very cool commercial for their new M5. In this video, the world’s fastest sedan recreates super slow-motion bullet footage on a much grander scale. The result: High Performance Art.

More details about the BMW M5 after the jump.


2012 BMW M5 High Resolution Exterior
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It seems that with the new M5, BMW tried to repair all the damages made by the 5-Series. Where the standard sedan failed to impress, the M version does exactly the opposite. It comes with dynamic proportions and stylishly authoritative appearance that has been further enhanced by the addition of M-specific design features.

The front of the BMW is a clear indication to the power lying under the hood. The bonnet is defined by the brand’s usual V contour lines and ends with a double-kidney grille, while the three air intakes in the lower section of the front apron emphasize the cooling air requirement of the engine behind the grille.

Moving to the side of the M5, you will see two side air intakes with a dynamically curving form placed where there used to be fog lamps. The car will sit on a new set of 19-inch M light-alloy wheels in double-spoke design. There is also a wide chrome frame and the free-floating look of the indicator bar, which bears the M logo and gives the intakes an extremely deep-set look. The mirror casings are painted in the vehicle’s body color, while the mirror base and lower edge are painted in High-gloss Black.

The rear features a bespoke rear apron, a diffuser integrated into the lower edge of the rear apron, and, of course, the twin-pipe exhaust system. The tailpipes are positioned wide to either side of the diffuser and have likewise aerodynamically formed surrounds.

UPDATE: BMW has announced that the new BMW M5 will be available with an exclusive Frozen Black finish, which will be available to customers through the BMW Individual personalization program. This color was previously offered for the special edition BMW M3 Frozen Black. (


2012 BMW M5 High Resolution Interior
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The interior continues the same sporty design language started by the exterior: it will get M sports seats, fine-grain Merino leather upholstery with extended features, door sills with “M5” lettering, an M driver’s footrest, exclusive Aluminum Trace interior trim strips, and the BMW Individual roof liner in Anthracite. Standard equipment will include an iDrive control system with an up to 10.2-inch Control Display.

The buttons on the steering wheel will allow the drive to operate the cruise control system and the audio and telephone functions. On the left-hand steering wheel spoke, the driver will now find two M Drive buttons, which can be used to configure the car. For example, the driver can save a sporty configuration using the "M1" button and a comfort-biased set-up via the "M2" button.

Configure your very own BMW M5 by clicking here.


2012 BMW M5 High Resolution Drivetrain
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"a bold business car that at the push of a button turns into a sports car."

For the first time in a BMW M5 the company has used a turbocharged engine. The high-revving 4.4 liter V8 unit with M TwinPower Turbo technology delivers a total of 560 HP at 6,000 – 7,000 rpm and a peak torque of 502 lb-ft between 1,500 and 5,750 rpm. The rev limiter intervenes at 7,200 rpm. Compared to the engine it replaces, this mean an output increase of about 10% and peak torque increased by 30%.

With this impressive output under the hood, the new M5 will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in in 4.4 seconds, to 124 mph in 13.0 seconds, while top speed is limited to 155 mph. But once you have removed the limiter you will enjoy a speed of up to 190 mph.

BMW spent a great deal of time bragging about their new M5, only to disappoint with the announced 0-60 mph sprint time. Not too shabby in comparison to other high performance sports cars out there, but hell, the new Audi S8 has a reported time of 4.2 seconds and is considerably larger than the M5. Lucky for BMW, Car And Driver has expert drivers that were able to drive the new sports sedan the way it was meant to be driven. With the help of these drivers, the BMW M5 has been able to clock a 0-60 mph sprint in 3.7 seconds. Eat that, BMW! Now they can truly say that their sports sedan is better than the Mercedes E63 AMG which sprints from 0 to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds.

The new BMW M5 is fitted as standard with Brake Energy Regeneration and an Auto Start-Stop function, which automatically switches off the engine when the car comes to a halt at junctions or in a traffic jam.

The engine will be mated to a seven-speed double-clutch transmission that sends the power to the rear wheels. Both in automated mode (D) and manual (S), it delivers exceptionally fast and clean gear changes. The transmission offers a sequential shift pattern for the manual gearshift mode and the driver can also change gear manually using the standard-fitted shift paddles on the steering wheel – the right-hand paddle for upshifts and the left-hand paddle for downshifts. Alternatively, BMW has decided to offer a 6-speed manual transmission on the North American version of the upcoming 2013 BMW M5. This new 6-speed manual will be a no-cost alternative to the 7-speed M-Double Clutch Transmission (M-DCT) and its ratios have been optimized for acceleration, flexibility, and fuel economy. The new transmission is mated to a short throw shift linkage topped with a black leather backlit shift knob.

Just a few days after the BMW’s official launch, TeamSpeed reported that the 2012 BMW M5 became the fastest sedan around the Nurburgring race track with an impressive time of 7:55. With this new time, the M5 will be placed above models like the Porsche Panamera Turbo (7:56) and the Cadillac CTS-V (7:59). This new lap time also matches the ’Ring time of the Ferrari F430.

The record lap was completed by a BMW driver, but don’t put it in the record books just yet. This is actually an unofficial time, surely to be followed by the real thing shortly.

When Can I Get One?

The new BMW M5 will go on sale on the US market in the summer of 2012 at a starting price of $90,695 (including destination and handling).

The Competition

2012 BMW M5 Exterior
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The next BMW M5 will take on models like the Jaguar XF-R, Cadillac CTS-V, and Audi S6.

The Jaguar XF-R surely has its benefits. It is more elegant and luxurious than the BMW M5 with a good amount of aggressiveness in its design. It may only be powered by a 5.0 Liter supercharged V8 that pumps out 510 HP, but these other factors will surely sway some votes in Jaguar’s direction.</p.

The Cadillac CTS-V has also gained a lot of terrain on the US market, and with good reason. For one thing, it’s cheap compared to the other models - it starts from $64,290 - and it also features a very impressive 6.2 liter supercharged V-8 with an output of 556 HP and 551 lb.-ft. of torque.

Video Montage

Top Gear’s Richard Hammond tests the BMW M5

BMW M5 Technology Explained

Albert Biermann, Head of M Engineering, explains the main differences and improvements over the X5/X6M engine

The brakes behind the M5

  • Leave it
    • We anticipate a high price tag

Download the brochure

Alina Moore
Alina Moore
Alina Joined the team in the early 2000s as one of the outlets very first experts, and she’s been with ever since. Over the years, she’s served various roles, but today she’s is relied on heavily to verify automotive facts, assist with formatting, and discover new and engaging topics.  Read full bio
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Show Comments


  (472) posted on 01.26.2012

I love how this BMW drifts in the sea. It’s inviting for me. Impressive in a maximum 190mph. Interior is simple but functional.

  (595) posted on 01.24.2012

I like the sporty look of it by remaining it luxurious ambiance. I am now too eager to know the price of this car. It perfectly matched its sporty looks with luxurious taste.

  (441) posted on 01.19.2012

I agree. This one looks better on black body paint. On my own opinion, I love the sporty look of it by remaining it luxurious ambiance. Anyway, I am now too eager to know the price of this car.

  (368) posted on 01.12.2012

I think it is powerful when it comes to speed performance. I’m impressed due to it’s good interior feature and a striking engine output. I love the color itself.

  (530) posted on 01.12.2012

I have to agree with those other comments, but as for my side. I don’t like the front design of this BMW. It looks scary to me. Haha. Anyway, the speed performance is great with a 190 mph. Adding to that is the engine specs of V8 engine which can have an output of 560 HP. This is really a must have car.

  (194) posted on 01.12.2012

I agree, it sure does look better in black paint. Anyway, This is too impressive with its engine and speed performance. Ans as for the looks? It perfectly matched its sporty looks with luxurious taste.

  (342) posted on 01.10.2012

I really adore the cars from BMW, and this one really had my urge to dream of having one! The speed performance is really impressive, and so with the design and body paint. I wonder how much this will cost?

  (498) posted on 01.5.2012

The speed performance of the car is quite impressive as expected from the BMW. I really love M package of the car for it makes the car more sporty and luxurious. However, it seems that the car has a high price tag.

  (762) posted on 01.4.2012

Well, one thing I only love about this one is that it has a very luxury and exclusive interior, and it’s a great think as well that it has an efficient and powerful engine specification.

  (558) posted on 01.2.2012

Wow! It seems that there are a lot of concept cars that were lined up for future production. For this car, I bet it would sell like hot cakes since it’s been using the very amazing M package.

  (427) posted on 01.2.2012

Ever since they have released this one, a lot of people are asking for information about it. However, I am not really all that surprised about that, after all, this is such a great car.

  (692) posted on 01.1.2012

I’m actually fascinated with the luxury interior of this BMW, especially on its navigation system, which looks so cool! Moreover, I really feel very excited on the Frankfurt Motor Show and for the market production of it.

  (599) posted on 12.28.2011

I also thought that this car was already released. However, this car definitely has the guts to compete with other cars because of its classic luxury and sports car style.

  (427) posted on 12.27.2011

The car is undoubtedly having an impressive aesthetic. One thing that I love about this car is its fuel-efficient. Most commonly V8 technology uses 5 liter of fuel to run the car but for M5, its only 4 liter!

  (1211) posted on 12.25.2011

I think the thing that makes it the best release of BMW at this year is its engine. If you look at those lovely one, you’re like driving a sports car on this one. A sporty yet luxury type car.

  (647) posted on 12.23.2011

The competitors of this car are also an awesome production. I bet this would be an exciting head to head competition in the market!BTW, if not mistaken the Audi RS6.

  (503) posted on 12.20.2011

Well, a manual transmission would be great enough for me. So bad they are only going to give the speed boost to German users, it would really be good if we can have it here too.

  (727) posted on 12.18.2011

The power under the hood of the M5 is quite impressive. However, I was a bit off a shocked about their planned for long-wheel base cars..Don’t tell me they’re still on April Fool’s spirit?

  (577) posted on 12.16.2011

Not much different from the previous M5, based on the exterior shots. However, the new set of wheels definitely are starting to stand out. Do hope that they add more to the engine’s output for the production.

  (474) posted on 12.6.2011

It is rather the best production car that we see in BMW! I am not really impressed with BMW cars, but this one really caught my attention. I must also have agreed that the engine performance is truly quite impressive and cool.

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