The BMW M5 is the bedrock upon which the house of M Division is built. Sure, the M1 came first, but the M5 established the M way as we know it now - take an ordinary premium car, and give it ridiculous amounts of power.
It was unjust, then, that its younger upstart sibling, the M8 Competition, has been getting all the headlines. A few weeks on from the reveal of the facelifted 5-series, the M5 has had the mid-life refresh. It’s just as powerful as before, with an M8 Comp-matching 616bhp in its own Competition form. 0-62mph remains 3.3 seconds, and the top speed is 155mph, or optionally, 189mph.
As before, it’s a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 providing thrust. This sends power to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox, with a setup that favours the rear wheels. The ‘4WD Sport’ mode biases the M5 to the rear further, while ‘2WD’ disengages the front axle entirely while turning off the traction control.
Among the changes for the new-ish M5 is its coupe bro’s ‘Track mode’, which switches off the driver assistance functions while muting the audio system and switching off the central display. This is intended to give a distraction-free environment so you can get on with the task of helming.
The M5 takes the lead from the standard tweaked 5er with a new LED light clusters, a redesigned bonnet, bigger kidney grilles and a fresh front bumper. The rear gets new light clusters too, along with a lightly reshaped boot and a rejigged diffuser.
Further distinguishing it from the old one, there are three new colours on the menu - Tanzanite Blue, Aventurine Red and Alvit Grey - plus a new 20-inch wheel option.
In the cabin, you’ll find a bigger infotainment system and a newer version of BMW’s digital instrument cluster. A new ‘Setup’ button provides a handy shortcut to the menu used for creating an individual configuration for the car’s engine and chassis setup.
Want one? You’re looking at a starting price of £98,095 for the Competition, which will be very easy to push above the £100,000 mark. By the looks of it, mirroring other M products, it’ll only be the Comp coming to the UK.