BMW is bringing electrification to the 5 Series. The German company announced this week that the eighth generation of the sedan that slots in between the 3 Series and 7 Series will come as an electric version, the i5, as well as a refreshed gas equivalent.
The electric 5 Series is coming in two trim levels: the i5 eDrive40, with rear-wheel drive, 335 horsepower, and 295 pound-feet of torque; and the sporty i5 M60 xDrive, with all-wheel drive, 601 horsepower, and 605 pound-feet of torque.
The eDrive40 version will leap from 0–60 mph in six seconds, while the M60 trim will close the gap in only 3.8 seconds. Both versions are electronically speed limited to 120 mph.
An 81.2kWh battery pack will propel the i5 to up to 516 km (320 miles) of range based on the less conservative WLTP standard. And for charging, BMW is teaming up with Volkswagen’s Electrify America to offer two years of unlimited fast charging up to 30 minutes. The i5 can accept up to 205kW of fast charging, which can take the battery from 10 to 80 percent in about 30 minutes.
Much like it did with the 4 Series and 7 Series, BMW is taking its gas-powered models and releasing electric variants that are built on the same platform
The electric 5 Series will be one of the first to feature BMW’s new hands-free highway driving features. The car can also suggest lane changes, which the driver can confirm just by looking in the exterior mirror.
BMW has redesigned its infotainment system in the 5 Series to include in-car gaming for the first time. A number of games are accessible while the vehicle is parked, which will help pass the time while charging, for example. Video streaming will also be available for parked cars.
The trademark kidney grille is a little more toned down as compared to the toothsome i7 and iX but still is unabashedly in your face. The grille has become somewhat of a polarizing design choice, especially in the EV era in which airflow is less of a concern, but BMW is not backing down from this signature styling.
Overall, the i5 is a bit more conservative in its design and technology than the more opulent i7. I mean, how do you top a 31-inch, 8K drop-down movie screen for rear passengers?
But at a starting price of $67,795, the i5 is still definitely a premium vehicle. It won’t qualify for the Inflation Reduction Act tax credits, which caps eligible prices at $55,000. Nor will the more powerful (and more expensive) M5 version of the i5, which starts at $85,095.