The all-new BMW 5 Series has been out in the Western markets for quite some time now. With a new generation out, it was only a matter of time before people got talking about the high-performance version. After spy photos were published just two days ago, BMW has revealed the next-generation M5, albeit in camouflage guise.
The exterior may still be covered but the German automaker has dropped several key highlights for the super sedan. Internally known as the F90, it represents a different direction for the M Division, as it will be the first non-crossover model to come standard with all-wheel drive.
Dubbed the M xDrive, it works by sending most of its power to the rear. The front drive only engages when there is a loss in traction detected. The driver has the option to choose from various stability control and all-wheel drive modes. For stability control, there's DSC On, M Dynamic Mode and DSC off. For the M xDrive system, 4WD and 4WD Sport are selectable. If the driver wishes to slide the M5, there's also a 2WD mode.
Under the hood of the M5 is a 4.4-liter, TwinPower Turbo V8, essentially a highly-tuned version of the engine found in the M550i xDrive. According to BMW, this engine gets higher injection pressure, new turbochargers, more powerful lubrication and cooling systems, plus a lighter exhaust system. BMW has yet to mention the exact power figures for the M5's engine. Based on previous reports, it is pegged at around 600 PS and 700 Nm of torque.
BMW's announcement also confirms their shift in transmissions. The outgoing M5 (F10) currently uses a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. In the all-new model, it now uses an eight-speed automatic transmission, specifically designed for this car. BMW calls it the M Steptronic with Drivelogic.
The automaker has yet to announce the debut date for the 2018 BMW M5. Our spies did say it is expected to be fully revealed at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show.