Fifth Gear “highly recommends” the 2011 BMW 5 Series

5-series | April 15th, 2010 by 5
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In an interesting review of the new BMW 5 Series, the UK journalists at Fifth Gear begin with the following statement: “The new 5 Series …

In an interesting review of the new BMW 5 Series, the UK journalists at Fifth Gear begin with the following statement: “The new 5 Series has taken an already impressive car and improved it – the result is an executive saloon that handles like a sports car.”

Overall, the new BMW 5 Series was rated 4.5 out of 5, and despite some initial negativism from UK journalists, the latest 5er is shaping up to be a strong contender in the luxury sedans segment.

Here are some of the areas were BMW scored four and five points:

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The latest generation of the 5 series has followed other BMW models by moving away from the controversial and eye-catching styling of previous cars. The folds on the bonnet make it clear that this is the new car and it is different enough for passers-by to know you are in the latest version, even if it doesn’t set any new standards in design.


The old 5 Series was renowned for its fantastic handling, and its replacement has moved the bar even higher. The intelligent steering system makes the bigger-engined versions feel like a smaller sports saloon.


The six-cylinder engines are rapid and offer similar performance in petrol or diesel guise with 62mph coming in 6.0 and 6.3 seconds respectively. Although we’ve not yet driven the predicted best-seller, the 4-cylinder 520d, an 8.1 seconds 0-62mph time promises good things, too.

And here is the one where a three rating was given:


The standard leather is a welcome addition to the standard spec list, joining Bluetooth, parking sensors and cruise control. The option list is long and potentially expensive though, and you could easily add £10,000 – £15,000 to the purchase price.

Full review can be found here

5 responses to “Fifth Gear “highly recommends” the 2011 BMW 5 Series”

  1. Giom says:

    Autocar should learn about journalism from this group.

  2. milberg says:

    When for the 535d or 540d? Anybody knows?

  3. viper says:

    Good review but it seems like the 5 series has effectively become two separate cars; one with adaptive damping and one without. Unfortunately without this expensive option the new 5 seems to be a worse car to drive, though more comfortable. Given that the majority of buyers will be in smaller diesels, reviewers not examining this fact perhaps aren’t lending themselves much credibility.

    • I agree, many reviewers have said that without Adaptive Drive the car doesn’t feel as good to drive as the old one. However, Autocar says that the car is still more agile than the E-Class.

      Lower-end models get Adaptive Damping as an option, but Adaptive Drive is available only on 6-cylinder cars.

      I guess that BMW just wanted to attract more buyers that don’t care about driving experience but for style. quality and prestige – the ones that would usually choose an A6, for that matter. On the other hand, with those expensive options, the 5er is still the best car to drive and BMW counts on us enthusiasts to know about these options and technologies.

      However, with cost-savings from all-steel chassis and platform from the 7 Series and 5GT BMW could have introduced Adaptive Drive as a standard equipment.

      But many were complaining that E36 and E46 3 Series were softer and less focused cars than their predecessors and look how successful those generations were. And the new 7 Series is the best selling car in its class.

      Nevermind, Autocar admits that the 5er still remains quite good fun to drive. I just wished that BMW would make every model like that, just like it used to.

  4. efoza says:

    This ordinary 5 is not as well made as the 5GT but still deserves high marks. I think if any one wants a real 5 series feel and the 100% perfection, they should go for a 5GT.

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