Coincidence or not, BMW is announcing when it will take the wraps off the next-generation 5 Series Sedan on the same day as archrival Mercedes reveals the 2024 E-Class. It’ll happen on May 23 before the start of production scheduled for this summer at the Dingolfing Plant in Germany. The market launch is in October, and that includes both the ICE-powered versions and the fully electric i5.
Around 590 horsepower in i5 M60 xDrive
Along with disclosing the much-awaited debut date, the luxury automaker is also sharing some preliminary technical specifications pertaining to the first-ever i5. The base eDrive40 with rear-wheel drive and an electric motor mounted at the back will offer 335 horsepower (250 kilowatts) while the dual-motor i5 M60 xDrive is going to pack 590 hp (440 kW).
You’ll want to stick with the base version if efficiency is your top priority as the cheaper i5 will offer a BMW-estimated driving range of 468 to 582 kilometers (291 to 362 miles) in the WLTP cycle. The US-spec i5 eDrive40 will return an estimated 295 miles (475 kilometers) based on the EPA’s testing procedure. BMW has not revealed the estimated range of the M Performance i5 per the EPA cycle, but as with the WLTP numbers, it’ll be lower compared to the RWD model by favoring performance to the detriment of efficiency.
Much like the flagship i7, the smaller i5 will be offered with a Max Range mode that will limit the power and speed while deactivating some of the creature comforts to squeeze out extra miles of range. In the case of the i7, BMW is promising a boost in range as high as 25%. An impressively low drag coefficient of 0.23 for the i5 will further improve efficiency, made possible by installing cleverly positioned air vents, aero-optimized wheels, and a slippery underbody.
The i5 M60 is getting standard air suspension at the rear axle and will ride on 20-inch wheels wrapped in 245/40 R20 front and 275/35 R20 rear tires with foam inlay to reduce noise. BMW mentions the zero-emission 5 Series Sedan in M Performance guise will benefit from rear-wheel steering to reduce the turning circle and make the car more stable during high-speed cornering.
Interestingly, the undisclosed battery pack is considered a chassis component to increase stiffness for improved safety in the event of a crash. Borrowed from the i7 and the XM will be the active roll stabilization at the front and rear. The i5 M60 is also getting electric steering column adjustment, and as with all versions of the next 5 Series, it will utilize the iDrive 8.5 introduced on the i7 M70.
Next month’s world premiere will only include the sedan, but the wagon is not far behind. BMW has already announced an i5 Touring is slated to go on sale in 2024. Roughly a year later, the M5 will complete the lineup and is expected to come in both sedan and wagon flavors with a plug-in hybrid V8 making over 700 horsepower.