Please Tell Us Your City
Aditya Chatterjee Aditya Chatterjee Saturday 29 September 2012


Automobiles are primarily a medium of transportation. They take you from Point A to Point B. We all have different purposes of using automobiles ranging from our office commute to the daily grocery shopping. Buy it, use it and maintain it is the normal routine which most people would tend to follow with automobiles.


However, there are some automobiles which people buy for reasons that transcend the mundane. These are aspirational automobiles. These vehicles are bought by enthusiasts, who always find a reason to drive them. They describe these vehicles as an extension of their own personality.

A certain premium car manufacturer called BMW makes cars for these enthusiasts under the “M” tag. The M, which denotes Motorsports, is the performance version of the normal production models. In our review of the latest generation 2012 BMW M5, we find out more on the nemesis offering from BMW and if it still holds the laurels earned by its predecessor.




I am sure If Mercedes Benz designers were asked about their favorite music, it would have been something by Ludovico Einaudi or Mozart but BMW designers would have chosen Metallica or perhaps Marilyn Manson. The anger and aggression on the BMW models have become very synonymous with the brand. It is very natural on why the young hot blood chooses the Bayerische cars over anything else.


The all new BMW M5 is not a beautiful car at all, instead it boasts of robust lines on its body. It looks as if it has not been designed but carved from a block. Though it is based on the 5 series, the styling of the M5 speaks volumes about the performance of this sedan.

A normal road can transform into a race track, with the notorious cues on the car. Front face is a chunky mass of metal with carvings to help the air flow. BMW designers decided to keep only the elements which are needed on a high performance car so you won’t find fog lamps on the front bumpers instead you will find three massive air intakes to swallow as much air as possible to cool the monster V8 engine as well as for other requirements. Also to add to this are the solid contours on the bonnet which meet the iconic kidney grille.

The side profile would remind you of the regular 5 series but won’t make you confusedly mistake for it. This is cause of the 20-inch M light alloy double spoke alloy wheels. There is barely any rubber on those wheels. It looks insanely awesome. The long stretched wheelbase, lower suspension arrangement and the low slung styling make it look very sporty especially with the side skirts and wheel flares on the body. The M gills on the front panel tastefully finish the side styling.


M rear spoiler on the boot lip shall make the one following you understand about this sedan’s potential along with the M5 badge on the right. Still, if he manages to miss it, the under fit quad shot gun exhaust pipes will assure him of the M5’s prowess. Unlike the 5 series, the M5 has got reflectors on the top line of the bumper.

The 2012 BMW M5 looks like a proper illegal street racing car. It is very notorious and mischievous. Even in standstill, the car screams about its performance statistics. One can’t possibly look wrong in a M5. Even with a wrong maneuver can make you look “cool” in this car.


Extremely aggressive exteriors are a total treat. However the interiors miss the wow factor. It is heavily borrowed from the 5 series, which has its highs and lows. The Highs are the interiors of the M5 are not very dramatic so even the matured buyer can opt for it. The lows are since the interiors are very reminiscent of the 5; there is nothing refreshing about it.


M5 badged scuff plates welcome you inside the cabin. The Merino leather upholstery is just fine and is extremely comfortable. Even though the M5 is a performance sedan, the seats are still very comfortable unlike the 2012 BMW 328i, which has extra bolstered seats. Legroom is comfortable for the front row and decent for the rear. Perhaps guys at BMW knew that a M5 customer will not be spending too much time at the rear seat, which is so true.

The M badge affixed and custom stitched Nappa leather steering wheel has two M mode options M1 and M2 on it which can be manually configured for performance and comfort settings respectively. Instrumental cluster is simple and stylish. I have a small complaint with the 2012 328i and now this one too which is the digits on the speedometer and tachometer, this is perhaps I want the car to be as sporty and aggressive in the interiors as well.


Aluminum finished paddle shifts, right for up and left for downare just behind the steering wheel. They provide proper grip and also help to give a performance sedan feel to the driver. The heads up display is a standard arrangement on the M5.

Around the staunch M auto shift stick, there are 3 custom engine performance options Effeciency, Sport and Sport Plus, which tweak the ride according to the desired condition. These modes are highly active and one can notice it as soon as it is activated. For example, as soon as it is shifted in the sports mode there is a noticeable rise in the engine rpm.

The front door pockets can hold a 1L bottle easily. Also there are many intermittent storage options on the central console and also on the rear row of passengers. The boot space of the 2012 BMW M5 is a generous 520 litres. This is a lot of boot space for a sedan like this.



Under that long never ending hood lies a monster heart. The 2012 BMW M5 has a all new V90 styled 8 cylinder 4395 cc engine. It is equipped with an M TwinPower Turbo charger. This mammoth produces a power of 560bhp at 6,000 – 7,000 rpm and a torque of 680 Newton metres between 1,500 and 5,750 rpm. BMW has given a seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission with Drivelogic to whip this monster. Though what we didn’t try but can still vouch for is the 0 – 100 km/h timing which is 4.4 seconds. It is perhaps the same time you would take to smile from a frown face.


The 2012 BMW M5 apart from the awe struck performance figures is easy on the pockets too. It burns 30 percent less fuel than the earlier generation and also has 2 cylinders less than the same. The number of cylinders has been decreased but the fun factor has not as the new M5 delivers 10 percent more power and 30 percent more torque. These figures are very impressive on paper but the real fun begins when you push her on the road.

As BMW rightly puts it, the 2012 BMW M5 is a wolf under a sheep. Push the start button and the petrol mill starts singing a growly note. I doubt BMW guys have hidden a hard metal band inside the exhaust note as when you push her, a high grungy metal note starts screaming at its peak. The best note however comes when you twist the throttle to the max with the Quad shot gun pipes shooting to glory.

However, with so much of insane amounts of power one still feels in control of the 2012 BMW M5. This makes it a bit better than the E63 AMG which feels all over the place when twisted.


Boasting of a 16 speaker Harman Kardon sound system, the new 2012 BMW M5 promises to be a business jet with high performance. With a car like the M5, I don’t mind if BMW forgets giving me the music system as I am too much lovestruck by the exhaust note of the vehicle.

Travelling in this is like travelling in an envelope of technology. The new M5 offers three different gear changing styles in the S mode S1, S2 and S3. While the S1 is more of a comfort shift, the S2 inclines to a smart crisp shift. While, the best is the S3, which makes the M5 more mentally insane as it activates the Launch Control also it switches off the stability control. This brings out all the dynamics of the car and ensures one gets maximum acceleration on the rear wheel. The M5 is equipped with a six piston caliper brakes with a fixed at front and a floating at rear arrangement. The inner-vented and perforated brake discs have a diameter of 400 mm at the front and 396 mm at the rear.


Since it’s a performance sedan, the M5 takes some bruising on our normal roads especially with some tall speed bumps on toll nakas. Maneuvering the M5 is not at all difficult even with such dimensions as the hydraulic steering arrangement is very precise. The only issue that we faced were with the brakes acting little lazy in stopping the sedan which was perhaps an outcome of some enthusiastic driving of the earlier auto journos.

On the highways, the 2012 BMW M5 brings an evil smile on your face as it gives you the confidence to overtake anything possible on road. If you are cruising around lazily and suddenly feel the need for speed, crank up the music and shift the stick to sports more along with the S3 gear shift option. With all the necessary sports settings, the M5 tears the streets with ease and has a razor sharp handling to compliment it further.  The suspensions happily gulped whatever surface was thrown at it. BMW cars have always been a great handler with amazing and stiff suspensions.


A 4.4L petrol guzzler Performance sedan is not the obvious choice of someone who cares a lot about fuel efficiency. We got a worst fuel mileage of 3 kmpl and a best of 9 kmpl which is commendable.

We however could not complete our review drive as the low profile tyres of the M5 could not take the streets anymore and went flat as we were nearing the vehicle drop location. This gave us an opportunity to review the BMW Roadside assistance. After enquiring all the necessary details about the vehicle, finally a flat bed truck was sent to the rescue. It was not a great site to see our Monte Carlo Blue BMW M5 belted and then taken away on the truck from the scene. There is no issue with low profile tyres but there are many issues with the Indian roads which show its true color in monsoon.


Tech specs
Technical Specifications
Make BMW
Model M5
Ex Show room price Mumbai in lakh 99,90,000
Engine Capacity (L) 4395/8 CYL
Power (PS/RPM) 560/7000
Torque (NM) 680/5750
Dimensions in mm
Length 4910
Width 1891
Height 1456
Wheel Base 2964
Claimed fuel efficiency in KMPL 10
Tyre size Front 265/40 ZR 19
Tyre size Rear 295/45 ZR 19
Top speed KMPH 250
Curb weight (Kgs) 1985
Tank capacity in (L) 80
Features M5
Automatic airconditioning Yes
Automatic transmission with steptronic Yes
Central locking with immobiliser and crash sensor Yes
Merino Leather interiors Yes
Fog lights Yes
Glass roof, electric Yes
Sports leather steering wheel Yes
Multifunction steering wheel Yes
Rain and light sensor Yes
Park distance control, rear Yes
Cruise Control Yes
Electric seat adjustment with memory for driver seat Yes
HiFi loudspeaker system Yes
iDrive package Yes
CD changer for 6 CD Yes
Driver and front passanger airbag Yes
Head airbag front and  rear Yes
Side airbag driver and front passanger Yes
Cornering Brake Control Yes
Dynamic stability control Yes
Dynamic traction control Yes
Run flat tyres Yes
Trim finisher black high gloss Yes
Xenon Headlamps Yes
Mercedes Benz
Variant M5 E 63 AMG
Ex-Showroom price  Mumbai in lakh 99,90,000 1,08,00,000
Engine Capacity (cc/cylinder) 4395/8  6208/8
Power (PS/RPM) 560/7000 525/6800
Torque (NM) 680/5750 630/5200
Dimensions in mm
Length  4910 4868
Width 1891 1854
Height 1456 1471
Wheel Base 2964 2874
Claimed fuel efficiency in KMPL 10 8
Tyre size Front 265/40 ZR 19 255/40 R18
Tyre size Rear 295/45 ZR 19 285/35 R18
Top speed KMPH 250 250
Kerb weight (kgs) 1985 1840
Tank capacity in (L) 80 66
Key Features
Automatic airconditioning Yes Yes
Automatic transmission with steptronic Yes Yes
Central locking with immobiliser and crash sensor Yes Yes
Leather upholstery Yes Yes
Fog lights Yes Yes
Sports leather steering wheel Yes Yes
Multifunction steering wheel Yes Yes
Rain and light sensor Yes Yes
Park distance control, rear Yes Yes
Electric seat adjustment with memory for driver seat Yes Yes
HiFi loudspeaker system Yes Yes
CD changer for 6 CD Yes Yes
Driver and front passanger airbag Yes Yes
Head airbag front to rear Yes Yes
Side airbag driver and front passanger Yes Yes
Cornering Brake Control Yes Yes
Dynamic stability control Yes Yes
Dynamic traction control Yes Yes
Run flat tyres Yes Yes

The all new 2012 BMW M5 is by far the raciest sedan I have ever driven. The 2012 BMW M5 scores more than the Mercedes Benz E63 AMG for me as the latter has got amazing tons of power but then the M5 seems to know on how to control it.


With an increased power and torque output along with reduced fuel consumption, the latest generation BMW M5 promises to be an enthusiast’s favorite for long. It is priced at Rs. 98,90,000 which is in line with its rival models. Sports themed exteriors could have done with equally awesome interiors too but then it’s difficult to maintain the balance between sporty and comfort at the same time. “M” for me is mentally insane as the 2012 BMW M5 is insanely powerful. The pull you get after acceleration (with the Launch Control) is totally worth it.

If you have recently transformed from a very-adorable-good-boy to a carefree-brash-rebel, the 2012 BMW M5 is the perfect ride for you. Although, if you manage to get one you would be banned from the neighborhood cause of the Quad pipe exhaust notes.


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