BMW launches all-electric 5 Series: the i5

BMW has unveiled the all-new G60 generation of the 5 Series, which gets a radical new look and, for the first time, a fully-electric version in the shape of the i5. Gasoline, diesel, and plug-in hybrid versions are still on the table, however.

While its main rival, the Mercedes E-Class, went for a traditional look that builds on the previous generation, BMW has opted to completely overhaul the design of its mid-size sedan. Although ‘mid-size’ might not be the most appropriate way to describe the new 5 Series; it has also grown in every way, now measuring over 5 meters in length.

Bigger, much bigger

With a length of 5,06 m (+97 mm), a width of 1,90 m (+32 mm), and a height of 1,52 m (+36 mm), the new G60 generation of the BMW 5 Series is almost just as big as the previous 7 Series. Next to the extra interior room, this size increase also creates space for a large battery pack.

In terms of interior design, the new 5 Series takes cues from the larger 7 Series/i7 and the electric iX SUV, with fewer buttons and larger touchscreens. There’s even a touch-sensitive light bar across the entire width of the instrument panel, which is used for several interior functions. The interior is made from fully vegan materials as standard, but leather is optionally still available.

On the inside, traditional buttons have made way for touch-sensitive surfaces and displays. The steering wheel also gets multi-function buttons /BMW

All-electric i5

Along with the traditional 5 Series, BMW simultaneously launches the all-electric i5, available with two drivetrain options at the start. The i5 eDrive40 has a 250 kW (340 hp) electric motor powering the rear wheels, while the sporty i5 M60 xDrive offers 442 kW (601 hp), which enables an acceleration time of 3,8 seconds from 0-100 km/hour.

Both variants are powered by the same 81.2 kWh (usable) battery pack, offering a projected range of 497-582 km for the i5 eDrive40, and 455-516 km for the i5 M60. The battery is located in the car’s underbody, limiting the impact on the cargo space.

The BMW i5 comes in two variants, with the sporty i5 M60 offering over 600 horsepower /BMW

ICE and PHEV versions still available

Next to the electric versions, the BMW 5 Series will still be available with gasoline, diesel, and plug-in hybrid drivetrains. Europe only gets the four-cylinder 520i (gasoline, 208 hp) and 520d (diesel, 197 hp) at launch, while in the US, also a more powerful 530i and 540i will be available. However, a new six-cylinder diesel engine will also hit European showrooms.

As for PHEV options, the new 5 Series features an entry-level 530e model and a more powerful 550e as a successor to the current six-cylinder 545e, but not much has been confirmed about these variants. Both the i5 and 5 Series PHEV models are expected in Spring 2024, the combustion-powered versions arrive in October 2023.


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