At the previously mentioned BMW shareholders meeting in Munich, Dr. Norbert Reithofer, BMW’s CEO, confirmed that the BMW 5 Series ActiveHybrid has been greenlighted for production and first models will hit the market in early 2011.
“As early as next year, the new BMW 5-Series will also be available as a full hybrid,” Reithofer said. “And we are anticipating the hybridization of further models series, such as the BMW 3-Series. We also work with modules in this field, choosing the most suitable hybrid solution for the respective model.”
The BMW ActiveHybrid 5 was unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show back in March. The drive system featured in the BMW Concept 5 Series ActiveHybrid consists of 3.0 liter straight-six N55 gasoline engine with TwinPower Turbo technology, eight-speed automatic transmission, and electric drive. Integration of BMW ActiveHybrid technology in a sedan already extremely efficient with its “conventional” combustion engine reduces both fuel consumption and emissions once again by more than 10 per cent.
At the same time the electric motor offers a boost function, supporting the gasoline engine in generating particularly dynamic drive power for an even more sporting driving experience in the car.
The drivetrain technology featured in the BMW Concept 5 Series ActiveHybrid allows all-electric, zero-emission motoring in city traffic. At the same time a special hybrid-based Auto Start Stop function offers additional efficiency by consistently switching off the combustion engine when stopping at the traffic lights, a road junction, or in congested traffic.
The combustion engine is supported in the BMW Concept 5 Series ActiveHybrid by an electrical drive system developed specifically for this model and arranged in compact dimensions between the straight-six combustion engine and the automatic transmission. Drawing its energy from a high-voltage battery at the back of the car, the electric motor develops maximum output of 40 kW.
Pricing is unknown at the moment, but we expect to see it at similar levels as the top 550i model.