Currently, the BMW 5 Series is the old man of its segment, being passed by its newer competitors from Jaguar and Mercedes-Benz. Those new cars aren’t just pretty new faces, either. Both the new Jaguar XF and Mercedes-Benz E Class pose serious threats to the 5er, as they’re both fantastic cars. However, the BMW 5 Series is still a good car with a lot to offer, so can it stack up against the touch newcomers?
This review comes from the Britsol Post, who tests all three cars against each other to see which is best. In this test, all three cars use turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engines, so it’s the BMW 520d, Jaguar XF 2.0d and Mercedes E220. So all three cars are on pretty even ground to start.
In terms of looks, each car is quite distinct and has its own thing going for it. For instance, the Jaguar is the most menacing and aggressive looking of the bunch by far, and the best looking to these eyes. The 5 Series still looks good all these years later and is handsome, yet tough looking. The Mercedes is the most expensive and luxurious looking, but it is a bit boring.
The same can be said for the inside, where the BMW 5 Series cabin is very nice and very well built, but starting to show its age, in terms of design. The Jag’s is sporty and stylish, but its materials don’t live up to the Bimmer’s and its ergonomics are kind of a mess. The Benz has the most luxurious interior of the bunch and the newest design, but there are some cheap materials around the cabin. BMW’s iDrive is also the best infotainment system in the business, being slightly better than the Merc’s and miles better than Jag’s.
When it comes to actually driving these cars, two stand out more than one. The new Mercedes-Benz E Class is quite, comfortable and serene, almost to the point of being zen-like. It’s luxurious and relaxing, but not very fun. The Jaguar XF is the polar opposite, being exciting and raucous, with great steering feel and the best dynamics in the test, but it is a bit down on luxury. The BMW 5 Series does a great job of blending both, being almost as fun as the Jag, but more luxurious and comfortable.
The BMW 520d actually ends up taking the crown in this test, which is quite surprising given how much older it is than the other two cars. Its blend of great driving dynamics and solid luxury make it the best overall car of the bunch. Its superb iDrive system and lowest price tag also help its cause. While the Jag might be a bit more fun to drive and the Merc more luxurious, it’s hard to fault the BMW 5 Series as it blends both worlds so well.
The Jaguar XF is the car you buy if you want a sports car that can fit five adults, but that’s really its only trick. If that’s what you want, then it’s almost impossible to find a better car, as it’s stunning good looks, sports car-like interior and superb driving dynamics make it spectacular to drive. But if you also want some luxury and build quality, the Jag suffers.
If you want luxury, comfort and quiet with no added driving dynamics, it’s the Mercedes-Benz E Class that you want to buy. Its cabin is fantastically comfortable, its ride is supple and silky smooth and it’s the quietest of the bunch by far. However, it can be rather dull to drive. So this is the car for luxury buyers only.
[Source: Bristol Post]