2011 BMW 530d – First Drive in Portugal

5-series, Featured Posts | January 27th, 2010 by 15
530d F10 Portugal 301 750x500 2011 BMW 530d   First Drive in Portugal

The new BMW 530d is one of those models that many of us are already craving for. Available in Europe only, the BMW 530d is …

The new BMW 530d is one of those models that many of us are already craving for. Available in Europe only, the BMW 530d is equipped with a single turbocharger version of the same 3.0-liter inline-six diesel engine used in the 335d in North America along with the new ZF eight-speed automatic transmission. The automatic comes with steering wheel mounted paddle shifters for the true enthusiasts.

The engine outputs 242 horsepower and 540Nm (398 lb-ft) of torque. Top speed is limited at 155 mph.

During our test drive in Portugal ( conducted by BimmerToday), first thing we noticed was that the BMW 530d, in normal driving, is hardly recognizable as a diesel. While the engine runs on diesel fuel and one would expect some noise (a misconception we spoke about in the past), when you stand next to the vehicle, it is practically inaudible in the cabin at low speeds.

530d F10 Portugal 11 655x491 2011 BMW 530d   First Drive in Portugal

Only at high revs and speeds, the 530d becomes acoustically recognizable as a diesel model, but even then, the pleasing sound fades in the background. When gliding through villages at around 30mph, you hear only the rolling noise of tires.

The 3.0 liter single turbo engine carries out his work, otherwise unspectacular, but not boring: overtaking can be done with confidence thanks to the new ZF eight-speed automatic transmission that is magnificently matted in harmony with the engine.

530d F10 Portugal 251 655x491 2011 BMW 530d   First Drive in Portugal

Since the weight of BMW 530d and the 535i driven yesterday is almost identical, the adaptive suspension performs in a similar way and it is not surprising that no significant differences were detected. The BMW 530d inspires confidence on the road and provides a sense of high level security and control. After just a few yards, we had full confidence in the luxury sport sedan and its performance and dynamics on any road.

Tomorrow, we will discuss in our interview with Jos van As, about the technology in the new 5 and its cornering capabilities, even in Comfort Mode.

The interior, as seen in the official photos, resembles the convenience and comfort of a 7 Series. Thanks to the electronic aids, such as Speed Limit Detection, Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Information System, the vehicle always knows about the surroundings and informs the driver of any potential danger.


Leaving the marked lane without signaling, the steering wheel will create a slight ‘Vibrate’, a great reminder for some of the distracted drivers. Another car coming to your blind spot while changing lane? The 530d senses the danger through its exterior sensors and informs the driver with a flashing triangle positioned in the mirrors.

Head Up Display. A comfort and useful feature that no one should ignore. Offered as an option to the 530d standard package, the HUD is identical with the one in the flagship we tested last year, the 7 Series.

As with its “petrol twin”, the 530d had its share of track time, but more on that, on a future article, and for now, we invite you to enjoy the photo gallery below.

Watermark-free high resolution photos are available upon request.

  • Mike

    BMW really needs to emphasize the performance of these cars. While it may seem ‘cool’ to push the mpg/clean diesel angle, the potential buyer of a BMW is looking for performance. These cares deliver in spades and should be marketed as such!

  • Theo

    I believe they are taking the right approach, especially in corporate sales / lease constructions it is imperative these days that a car has excellent environmental / fuel consumption characteristics. Especially in Europe BMW has kept largely out of trouble because of this angle.
    That BMW’s are the best choice from a driving dynamics / performance POV in their respective segments is usually a given and well known by virtually the entire population of prospects for such a car.
    Stateside all this may be somewhat different though, cannot comment on that very well…

  • Frederico Silva

    Why Horatiu, why? :(
    Those bmwblog and bimmertoday symblos ruin the pictures :'(

    • http://www.bmwblog.com Horatiu B.

      Because many forums/sites steal the photos and never give us credit. Hence why I said if needed, we will supply the photos with no watermarks. We were the nice guys for a while, but not getting credit for our work is not pleasant either. I’ll try to make them next time less obvious, fade in.

      Sorry again.

      • bmwm6

        I dont know there not that bad
        unless your using them as a wallpaper

      • Frederico Silva

        Thanks for the explination, is there any way I can get these pictures without watermarks, you could send me or something else? :X

        • http://www.bmwblog.com Horatiu B.

          I will email you the photos

          • Frederico Silva

            Thank you very much (:

  • Beowolf

    Disappointed that yet again the newer model is heavier than previous models. BMW really needs to get serious about weight savings. I know vehicle dynamics and superior engineering will mask the weight but the weight will be noticeable when the car is taken to the limit.

    The lane change warning is nice but useless on higher powered models such as the upcoming F10 M5 where the tremendous amount of power available means you will be in the other lane probably before the yellow triangle can warn you.. OOPs..

  • http://www.australianautomotiveparts.com.au/ David Cooper

    Great info. From
    your post I can conclude that ‘BMW 530d’ is a very high quality car.

  • http://www.australianautomotiveparts.com.au/ David Cooper

    Great info. From
    your post I can conclude that ‘BMW 530d’ is a very high quality car.