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Motoring: The shimmering 2024 BMW 5 Series

The 5 Series is unconcerned with how others see it; it goes about its job in silence, dressed sharply and muscularly like an Armani suit.

The latest 5 Series, which is now in its eighth generation, has a streamlined and elegant appearance with a slew of new, creative features. If you want to see any of these new automobiles, you will have to fly over the Limpopo. There are hardly any BMW dealerships in Zimbabwe.

Having had a 2008 525d manual, I have a lifelong soft spot for the 5 Series. Because I have already reviewed it here, I will not begin for fear that I will not be able to stop because I can go on about that beauty.

The 3 Series is an excellent sedan that all BMW lovers like, but the 5 provides much more luxury and state-of-the-art technology. The chief executive officer of a major corporation will love to drive this automobile because he hates having to rely on a chauffeur in a larger, less manoeuvrable vehicle, the gigantic 7 series.


A clean, uncomplicated and subtly assertive front fascia highlights the new 5 Series sedan’s understated athletic beauty and presence, in contrast to the previous 5 Series’ appearance as a larger 3 Series.

The 5 Series is unconcerned with how others see it; it goes about its job in silence, dressed sharply and muscularly like an Armani suit. Indeed, it is “the most successful business sedan in the upper mid-range vehicle segment”, according to BMW.

The new 5 Series sedan takes the iconic BMW kidney grille and dual headlights and updates them with a smaller, more modern design. I believe the icing on the cake is the option to have the LED kidney grille outline — or what the manufacturer calls the BMW Iconic Glow lighting — specified.

Along with the black side skirts and flush-fitted door handles, another eye-catching element is the etched “5” located in the heart of the Hofmeister kink. The 5 Series’ understated design continues at the back with slim, chrome-banded wraparound LED taillights separated by a chrome bar, a sinister-looking black diffuser, and, for electric vehicles, no exhaust. Upgrades, including the M kidney grille, M exterior mirrors, and special M alloys, are available on the i5 M60 xDrive.

Although understated from the outside, the 5 Series’ cabin is a sight to see. Elegant crystalline backlighting (optional) changes colour when you select different driving and cabin ambience modes, and the pièce de résistance, the gigantic curved touch screen consisting of a 12,3-inch information display and a 14,9-inch control display, is reminiscent of the 7 Series. Sparkling crystal elements are also present.

As part of the M Package, the i5 M60 has carbon fibre inside trim that catches the light and looks just stunning.

Everything comes standard with “Veganza” leather sports seats, which are made without using any animals. If you would rather have genuine Merino leather, you may choose it with a two-toned trim. If you would rather have vegan leather, you can add perforation for a more eye-catching appearance.

Fans of cutting-edge gadgets will be in heaven in the luxurious cabin.

Exploring the BMW 520d’s features

The mild-hybrid 520d model’s 48-volt starter generator enhances recuperative braking energy, improves engine power and reduces engine effort.

The 520d is an incredibly refined example of BMW’s expertise in producing high-tech diesel vehicles. Even if the build-up is much slower, you just don’t perceive how quick it is. I was pleasantly impressed by the 145kW and 400Nm of power statistics; the TwinPower Turbo technology made it seem much more powerful than that.

There will not be a gasoline-powered 5 Series on the roster at this time.

The 5 Series models also come with rear-axle steering, commonly known as integral active steering, which made a U-turn very simple when the built-in standard satnav briefly appeared bewildered.

The 5 Series’ virtually perfect 50:50 axle weight distribution allows it to provide outstanding dynamic performances, regardless of whether it is equipped with all-wheel drive xDrive or not.

Testing out the technology

The new BMW Operating System 8.5 is rather straightforward, according to my testing, although the wheel controls are a bit of a learning curve. It is recommended that you set aside some time to understand how the system operates so that you can make the most of all its features. To avoid fingerprints on the touchscreen, you may either use the crystal iDrive controller or the buttons on the steering wheel.

While the most recent iteration of BMW’s adaptive cruise control — Driving Assistant Professional with Steering Lane Control Assist and Distance Control with Stop & Go function — performed admirably on congested highways, I wished there was a little more space between my car and the one ahead of me.

On the other hand, it does allow other drivers to pass you more easily. I used QuickSelect, which brings up a screen with several icons, to verify our settings and discovered that it was already set to the nearest.

Higher degrees of autonomous driving are nothing new to the 5 Series in international markets, but now you can get Active Lane Change Assistant with eye activation for the first time. Just glance into the mirror on the side of the vehicle that corresponds to the lane the automobile has suggested changing to confirm. After that, the vehicle will autonomously enter the lane you specify with the help of the Active Lane Change Assistant.

The 5 Series has the capability to enable hands-free driving; however, it is currently not allowed by law in Zimbabwe. This will change in the near future. How unfortunate for us! We will not enjoy this technology. Anyway, if cops don’t get you, then potholes will.

Unfortunately, I was unable to try out the in-car gaming capability, another fantastic new addition. While the vehicle is at a stop, the control display may stream video over the AirConsole platform. This allows you to play games on your smartphone with the view shown in front, creating an immersive gaming experience. While your vehicle is being charged at a public station, this is a fun thing to do.

My decision

The new 5 Series is ideal for people who love an engaging car and want to feel like a pilot since it is a vehicle for driving, not for chauffeuring.

The 2024 BMW 5 Series is versatile and impressive in every respect. The 5 Series is still an excellent choice if you are looking for a luxury sedan that excels in all three categories: performance, efficiency and technology.

  • We anticipate the release of more engine choices for the revamped vehicle, which now only offers four and six-cylinder petrol engines. — andrew@muzamhindo.com

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