The “Coolest” Feature of the 2018 BMW M550i
Dual Zone AND dual fan speeds keep everybody happyby Mark McNabb, on
The 2018 BMW M550i is the quickest 5 Series currently offered thanks to its 4.4-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 making 456 horsepower and 480 pound-feet of torque – aided by both a smartly calibrated ZF eight-speed automatic and BMW’s xDrive AWD system. At full grunt, the prodigious power will launch the 4,300-pound M Performance sedan to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds. But that’s not this Bimmer’s coolest feature. No, that goes to its HVAC system with dual fan speeds for the driver and front passenger.
Take it from me – a guy living in Florida testing a dark blue car with un-tinted windows in August – you’ll love having the extra control. That’s especially true if your wife is like mine. She’s the type who turns her seat heater on despite afternoon temperatures exceeded 100 degrees. Her cold-natured skin simply doesn’t need the cooling my does. In most situations, this results in her turning her vents toward me or off completely, while my dual-zone temperature is set to “Low” with the fan cranked to “Max.”
Thankfully, the BMW M550i has a solution: dual fan speeds. Yes, the driver and front passenger can set their own A/C temperature and fan speed. Welcome to the future. This means we both can have our A/C set exactly how we’d like without disturbing each other. I can be cool and breezy while she’s happy with warm and toasty. What’s more, we each can select our own blower location. That means she can warm her feet while I cool my body. Both sides also have a full Auto mode, too. It’s this level of individuality that truly ushers in luxury within a vehicle. The rear seat also has its own temperature control, though it’s set by a knob from cool to warm without displaying the actual temperature. Vent speed follows the front seats.
I know having dual fan speed capabilities must cost more, but would you like to see this feature on more vehicles? I know BMW’s 7 Series also has dual fan speeds, but that’s about it. Can you name any other vehicles with this feature? Let me know in the comments below.
Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M550i.