The 5-Series is offered with three different engines--designated by the models 528, 535 and 550. A 230-horsepower, 3.0-liter in-line six-cylinder engine is standard on 528 models; 535 models get a 300-horsepower, turbocharged 3.0-liter six. A 4.8-liter V-8 engine making 360 horsepower comes in the 550. The 528 models are offered with rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, as are the 535 models, while the 550 is only available with rear-wheel drive. Each of the models comes with a standard six-speed manual transmission. A six-speed automatic transmission with Steptronic shift command is optional.
The M5 model resides at the top of BMW's performance lineup. It's powered by a monster of a V10 engine that makes 500 hp and 383 lb-feet of torque. Power gets to the road via a 7-speed sequential transmission. The M5 utilizes a specially tuned sport suspension and unique cross-drilled disc brakes. M5-specific 19" wheels all around, a special spoiler and air diffuser also distinguish the M5 sedan from the rest of the 5-Series.
The most popular 5-Series configuration is four-door sedan, but a five-door wagon is also available, only in all-wheel-drive 535xi trim. The wagon comes with a cargo cover, cargo net, and under-floor storage compartment.
The 5-Series models have a roomy interior, with front seats that are excellent for long trips, enough back seat space for adults and, in sedans, a very roomy trunk. The instrument panel looks deceivingly simple, with a streamlined, horizontal design, but there's an underlying complexity in the iDrive controller that's needed to access some functions.
Though the standard suspension setup is already quite firm, rear-wheel-drive models can be specified with a Sport Package, which brings a tighter Sport suspension, grippy multi-contour front seats, and upgraded wheels and run-flat performance tires. The package also includes Active Roll Stabilization, a system that simulates much stiffer anti-roll bars with an electronically controlled pump system. Another performance option is Active Steering, which actually helps steer the car back toward a more stable situation when the electronic stability control intervenes.
The 5-Series comes with front side airbags and head-protecting airbags for front and rear outboard occupants. Rear side airbags, a still-rare feature, are optional.
Compared to other mid-size sport sedans, the 5-Series is a technology powerhouse. To help increase alertness and safety, there's a lane departure warning system; a night vision system is available, which might help spot and avoid animals up ahead after dark; and BMW's active cruise control is one of the most advanced offered, capable of stopping and restarting in traffic. Other unusual options include a head-up display, high-definition (HD) radio and a high-beam assist feature.
Handling; ride quality; refined powertrains; dazzling high-tech features
For 2009, audio systems have been upgraded and can now accept devices via USB interface. Also, Sirius Satellite Radio is now included across the line, but a first-aid kit is no longer standard. Two new 17-inch wheel designs are being introduced.
The 5-Series models are athletic and surefooted sport sedans (and wagons) that offer a surprising level of comfort inside. Technology features are also a strong point in the 5-Series, with performance and safety standouts like Active Steering, Active Roll Stabilization and a night vision system. The 535xi Sport Wagon is a very fashionable and fun-to-drive alternative to a sport-utility vehicle.
Vehicle Price: 89,325.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
Equipment that may affect values (standard equipment is pre-selected):
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