The BMW Group announced in September 2022 plans to introduce cars with leather-free interiors and now they’re living up to that promise with the new 5 Series. Unveiled today, the eighth-generation luxury sedan has a completely vegan cabin using leather-like Veganza. It’s not just on the seats and door panels, but also on the steering wheel for the first time.
It comes as standard in black but can be optionally had in three other colors and also with decorative perforation. Go for the M Sport Package and the seats come wrapped in a combination of Veganza and Alcantara, which isn’t leather either since it’s a synthetic textile made from polyester and polyurethane. This optional vegan upholstery has perforated surfaces and is adorned by translucent accents in red and blue.
The M Sport Package also gets you an anthracite headliner, M pedals (including footrest), and M-specific displays. Cars ordered with the M Sport Package Pro also receive M seatbelts and a Harman Kardon surround sound system. If you prefer real leather, there are several bicolor Extended Merino upholsteries at an additional cost, including Individual options.
Another novelty pertaining to the interior is the optional fixed panoramic glass roof. It’s 841 millimeters long and 818 millimeters wide, which makes the viewing area nearly 90% larger than the sunroof of the old G30-generation 5 Series. The glass covers almost the entire surface of the roof, extending without interruption from behind the windshield to just before the rear glass. The expansive glass can be had with a sunblind, which you can also get for the rear and rear-side windows.
Yet another premiere in a BMW is the ability to separately regulate the temperature in the footwell of the front seats. There’s a second solar sensor to regulate the temperature in the back in a more precise way for improved rear-occupant comfort. Unsurprisingly, a four-zone automatic AC is offered and comes along with a separate panel. There are also vents in the B-pillars and nanoparticle filters for all flavors of the 5 Series.
While the previous-generation model did offer a six-speed manual gearbox for a while in the 520d sold in Europe, you won’t be finding a stick shift inside the G60. All versions with gasoline, diesel, and plug-in hybrid powertrains use a newly developed eight-speed Steptronic Sport automatic with shift paddles behind a redesigned steering wheel.
The revamped 5er will hit the market in October and will be followed by the long-roof Touring next spring.