Another model to make its U.S. debut today at the 2010 New York Auto Show was the 2011 BMW 550i, the high-end model in the 5 Series line-up.

The top-of-the-range BMW 550i arrives with BMW’s “reverse-flow” V-8 engine featuring twin turbochargers and High Precision direct injection for maximum output of 400 hp. The engine is matted to an 8-speed transmission used in the existing 750Li and 550i as well.

The ZF 8-Speed makes for a strong transmission allowing the driver to experience all-round improved fuel efficiency with higher gearing while also allowing for better acceleration. The two taller gears in the 8-speed are ideal for cruising speeds and BMW has managed to improve the weight savings of the transmission to such a point that there is no additional weight added from the extra two gears. For those wanting to extract and put down power manually, a 6-speed gearbox will be available in the U.S. market for the bigger 535i and 550i.

2011-bmw-550i-nyias-5Design wise, the 550i will differentiate itself at the rear-end by the two trapezoidal exhaust tips, as seen in the new 7 Series as well.

Different wheels options will also be available for the new 550i.

The 2011 BMW 550i will start at $60,575, including $875 Destination & Handling.

Photos credit Shawn Molnar