Car paparazzi currently based at the Nürburgring have caught on camera the next-generation BMW 5 Series Sedan testing with the production body. It still had provisional headlights and taillights but their shape is unlikely to change for the final production model arriving at some point in 2023. The “Hybrid Test Vehicle” stickers on the front doors and rear bumper denote the prototype’s electrified nature.
It is believed the 5 Series G60 is going to be offered as 530e, 550ex, and M560e models combining a combustion engine with an electric motor. The test vehicle in question is unlikely to be the M Performance version (believed to have 565 horsepower) since it lacks quad exhaust tips coming to all BMW M Lite models going forward.
It’s either the 550ex equipped with the six-cylinder B58 or the lesser 530e featuring the smaller four-cylinder B48. Interestingly, none of the PHEVs will be available at launch as we’re hearing only ICE powertrains are going to be initially offered, along with the fully electric i5. The plug-in hybrids are scheduled to arrive near the end of 2023.
Spied with a partially exposed kidney grille of regular dimensions, the eighth-generation 5er will clearly not have the split headlight theme of the larger 7er. We can also notice BMW’s new flush door handle design for better airflow on the sides to boost efficiency. Although not noticeable, logic tells us the next-gen model will be slightly bigger now that the 7 is much longer than before. An even bigger 5 Li (codenamed G68) is coming to China with a stretched wheelbase for ample rear legroom.
Although the test vehicle is wearing a considerable amount of camouflage, it does give us the impression BMW won’t rock the boat in terms of styling. Expect an evolutionary design, perhaps a bit sharper compared to the outgoing G30. The interior will be subjected to significant changes by switching to the Operating System 8, which is likely to incorporate the climate controls into the touchscreen rather than having separate physical buttons.
While these spy shots depict the sedan, a more practical wagon is in the offing. Not only will it be sold as a purely electric i5, but rumor has it that BMW is bringing back the M5 Touring. Better yet, it’s possibly coming to the United States and will combine the S68 twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 engine with an electric motor. This setup will initially debut later this year on the XM, which will get a hot derivative in 2023 with around 750 horsepower.
The regular sedan is the first to enter production, in July 2023. China’s stretched saloon will be next in January 2024, with the 5 Series Touring to hit the assembly line in April. As for the high-performance versions, the G90 M5 Sedan’s SOP is believed to be July 2024 while the G99 Touring’s is November 2024. Meanwhile, the normal 5er should premiere in the first months of next year.
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