BMW 5 Series Upgrades - Shuffle Art


Admit it. BMW makes some very fine sport sedans and the 5 Series is the ideal offering when it comes to size – it is neither too big nor too small. But as far as the product mix for India went, there were a couple of gaps that could be filled. Now BMW India has done just that.

To begin with, an all-new entry-level model, the 520d, has been introduced to entice the otherwise shy owners to discover the 5 Series experience. Sure it is the only four-cylinder model in the 5 Series lineup, but it is certainly not going to make a difference if you are going to throw the key at the chauffeur in any case. You do get a large enough car, the prestige that comes with size and lots of space and comfort as a bonus – for just Rs 36.9 lakh ex-showroom. Good pricing? You bet, you got to shell out that much to take the smaller Audi A4 Quattro home. With 177 bhp on tap and 35 kgm of torque, the 520d is not exactly a hotshot motor. It takes the wrong side of 11.5 seconds to hit 100 kph but its top whack of 226 kph is more than sufficient for our roads. That said you can expect double digit fuel consumption figures even in city traffic from this engine.

 Out goes the 525d, and a spanking new six-cylinder powered 530d comes in along with a more luxurious 530d Highline for Rs 43.2 lakh and 46.8 lakh respectively. We sampled one on the Chennai-Mahabalipuram highway and found it ‘the’ 5 Series to buy in India. Look at the numbers – 235 bhp at 4000 rpm and a stump-pulling 50 kgm of torque from 1750 rpm onwards. That means this is the quickest 5 Series built in India today with a spec-sheet scorching run to 100 kph in 6.8 seconds flat and a top speed of 248 kph (the 530i would need 7.9 seconds to do 0-100 kph). The Highline version gets lower profile tyres and prettier 18-inch wheels. The light feel of the BMW chassis stands out, with the car feeling extremely manageable despite the monstrous torque that can send the rear tyres into a tizzy, but for electronic intervention. An improved iDrive control and a new (alright, improved) six-speed transmission adds to the value. The top-end petrol and diesel versions also get NightVision which uses infrared thermal imaging camera to ‘see’ heat-emitting objects 300m ahead (150 metres beyond the range of headlamps) and project an image on to the iDrive screen. 

The changes and new powertrains have really enhanced the appeal of the BMW 5 Series in India and it still has benchmark handling and safety features going for it. We would like a 530d long-termer in Titanium Silver please.