Bmw M5 Gets Its First Plug — And Gains A Lot Of Weight

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The BMW M5, the iconic high-performance variant of the 5 Series, has finally entered the electrified era. The latest iteration of the M5, unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show, marks a significant departure from its predecessors with the introduction of a plug-in hybrid powertrain. While the added electric motor brings a boost in power and efficiency, it also comes with a notable increase in weight.

A New Era for the M5

The 2023 BMW M5 xDrive Hybrid, as it’s officially known, combines a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 engine with an electric motor, producing a combined output of 653 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque. This represents a significant increase over the outgoing model’s 600 horsepower and 553 lb-ft of torque. The added electric motor, which provides an additional 129 horsepower, enables the M5 to accelerate from 0-60 mph in just 3.1 seconds, making it the quickest M5 to date.

The Weight Penalty

However, the added electric motor and associated components come at a cost – literally. The new M5 tips the scales at 4,370 pounds, a substantial increase of 440 pounds over the outgoing model. This weight gain is largely attributed to the 12.0-kWh lithium-ion battery pack, which is nestled beneath the rear seats. While the added weight may compromise the M5’s agility and handling, BMW engineers claim that the car’s advanced all-wheel-drive system and adaptive suspension have been tuned to mitigate the effects of the added mass.

Electrification Brings Efficiency Gains

Despite the weight gain, the M5’s plug-in hybrid powertrain brings significant efficiency gains. The car is capable of up to 28 miles of electric-only range, allowing for silent, emission-free motoring in urban environments. When the battery is depleted, the M5 can still achieve an estimated 22 mpg combined, a notable improvement over the outgoing model’s 15 mpg combined.

Design and Features

Visually, the new M5 xDrive Hybrid is distinguished from its predecessors by a revised front fascia, featuring a more aggressive bumper and larger air intakes. The car also receives a unique set of 20-inch alloy wheels and a bespoke rear diffuser. Inside, the M5 boasts a range of premium features, including a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, a 10.25-inch infotainment screen, and a head-up display.

Pricing and Availability

The 2023 BMW M5 xDrive Hybrid is set to arrive in dealerships early next year, with pricing starting at around $110,000. While the added weight may be a concern for some enthusiasts, the M5’s electrified powertrain and improved efficiency are likely to appeal to a broader audience.

In conclusion, the new BMW M5 xDrive Hybrid marks a significant milestone in the model’s history, blending exceptional performance with improved efficiency. While the added weight may be a compromise, the M5’s advanced technology and luxurious features make it an attractive proposition for those seeking a high-performance sedan with a conscience.

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