The new BMW M550i will sit atop the new 5 Series range, featuring a twin-turbo V8 and all-wheel drive. It's quicker than the current M5!
Meet the new BMW M550i xDrive. No, this isn’t the “M” derivative of the latest 5 Series sedan. But despite that it’s a whisker quicker than the current F10 M5!
So, how’s that been achieved? The M550i xDrive has been tweaked and fettled by the M Division, although as opposed to the fully mental “M” cars, it retains its sensible “luxury car” genes. Essentially, it’s a sportier and more powerful version of the new 5 Series. The M550i xDrive is propelled by a twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 engine that develops 456bhp and 650Nm of torque. Now while it’s nearly a 100bhp down on power over the current M5, it still manages to post a quicker 0-100km/h time of 4.0 seconds – 0.3s faster than the M5. And that's mainly because of its “xDrive” all-wheel drive system that offers better traction than the M5’s rear-wheel drive setup. Also, unlike the M5’s seven-speed dual clutch auto transmission, the M550i gets an eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox.
Keeping tabs on the firepower of the V8 is the M Sport-specific suspension package that sits 10mm lower than the standard 5 Series. It also has adaptive dampers on all four wheels. Depending on the driving conditions, the dampers, throttle response and steering weight settings can be altered by the driver.
On the visual front, the M550i may not look as extreme as an “M” car, but comes with some noticeable changes. It comes fitted with either 19- or 20-inch matte grey M wheels with blue brake calipers, a rear spoiler and some more matte grey bits on the grille, ORVMs, front bumper and exhaust tip so as to give it a distinctive look.
The M550i xDrive will go on sale starting March 2017 in Europe, and will remain the performance flagship of the new 5 Series range, until the arrival of the all-new M5.
Also read: 2017 BMW 5 Series Review