2021 BMW M5 review: Ahh, that’s better

BMW’s M5 is nonetheless a person sharp-lookin’ sedan.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

The BMW M5 gets the exact same minimal tweaks as other 5 Sequence models this year, which include new headlights and taillights and a bigger multimedia touchscreen. Arguably, however, the much more vital variations are the types you cannot see. The M5 Competitiveness gets new suspension components that make it eminently much more cozy without sacrificing sharpness.

Table of Contents


  • Sturdy V8 ability
  • Properly well balanced chassis
  • Great inside
  • A lot of conventional tech

Will not Like

  • Numb steering
  • Sensitive ceramic brakes

To give you some context, the preceding M5 Competitiveness was so stiffly sprung that it built this sport sedan just about unlivable working day to working day. Even in the suspension’s default Convenience setting, you could truly feel just about every minimal bump and blemish. It was sort of a nightmare.

As opposed to a conventional M5, the Competitiveness has entrance and rear springs that are 10% stiffer, the rear anti-roll bar is firmer, the entrance tires have elevated damaging camber for better cornering grip and the entire body sits .two inch reduce to the floor. For the 2021 Competitiveness, BMW provides new shocks and the damper manage method is recalibrated, all with the target of softening the ride excellent.

Does all this function? Oh my, yes. Rolling about freeway enlargement joints no for a longer period unsettles the entire chassis and you will not gnash your enamel encountering a rogue pothole. Even with the Competition’s upsized 20-inch wheels and summertime tires (the conventional M5 gets 19s), the ride excellent is so considerably better than ahead of.

None of this will come at the cost of poise, both. In reality, simply because the default Convenience setting finally will work as advertised, I’m not hesitant to contact up Activity or Activity As well as for a minimal much more stiffness below the ideal situation, like hitting a super-smooth California canyon street. The M5 Competitiveness stays flat whilst cornering and the lively all-wheel generate and digital rear limited-slip differential speedily deliver ability exactly where it’s essential most. It truly is excellent.

I nonetheless don’t genuinely care for the M5’s steering, which looks to be a frequent complaint with present-day BMW effectiveness autos. Certain, it’s major and immediate, but I feel a lot of persons confuse weight for interaction, and whilst the M5’s steering has the previous, it lacks the latter. The optional carbon-ceramic brakes are also sort of sensitive, with really hard-to-modulate attributes that can result in jerkiness when inching up a driveway or parallel parking. These brakes also include $eight,five hundred to the M5’s bottom line. If you usually are not going to be routinely halting your M5 aggressively from large speeds, as on a observe working day, probably skip this include-on.

The M5’s powertrain is unchanged for 2021, which is fantastic it’s been reliable all alongside. The twin-turbo four.four-liter V8 pumps out 600 horsepower and 553-pound feet of torque, although Competitiveness models see a modest bump to 617 hp. The eight-velocity automated transmission will work completely with this engine, speedily and smoothly ripping off nicely-timed shifts whilst mostly fading into the track record. You can select your possess journey with steering wheel-mounted paddles, but the transmission programming is so very good on its possess that I in no way genuinely discover the Diy shifters vital. 

The M5 Competitiveness is nonetheless speedy as hell, way too, ready to accelerate to sixty mph in 3.one seconds. Best velocity is electronically governed to a hundred and fifty five mph on the two Competitiveness and conventional models unless of course you splurge on the optional M Efficiency Package, which allows the limiter out to 190 mph. Gas financial system is unchanged for 2021, ringing up at fifteen miles per gallon city, 21 mpg freeway and 17 mpg merged on top quality gasoline.

Transferring within, the M5 updates to BMW’s most recent iDrive seven infotainment tech, bringing a twelve.3-inch electronic instrument cluster and a twelve.3-inch central touchscreen. iDrive’s menu composition has a steep learning curve at to start with, but I like that the main show speedily responds to inputs. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Vehicle are conventional, thank goodness, and it’s somewhat simple to change back again and forth between this smartphone mirroring tech and BMW’s main iDrive menus. A wireless cellular phone charger retains your gadgets juiced whilst on the go, way too.

iDrive seven tech is housed on a twelve.3-inch central show.

Steven Ewing/Roadshow

Total, the M5’s cabin is incredibly good, with smooth leather-based surfaces and tasteful metallic accents. The seats are cozy and supportive and rear seat travellers have enough head- and legroom. I certainly suggest including the $3,350 Executive Package, which gets you parking sensors and a parallel parking assistant, 360-degree digital camera coverage, heated and cooled entrance seats with therapeutic massage, heated rear seats, smooth-close doors and a handful of other goodies.

Curiously, BMW no for a longer period positions the Competitiveness as a independent design in the M5 lineup like it does with other M autos. Alternatively, you select the $seven,600 Competitiveness Package solution. The conventional M5 expenditures $104,495 to start (which include $995 for vacation spot), so an M5 Comp technically starts at $112,095.

The M5 Competition’s, um, levels of competition is largely limited to the Mercedes-AMG E63 S and forthcoming Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing. But there are a selection of options in BMW’s possess portfolio to take into account. To start with, you will find the M8 Gran Coupe, which seems to be rad, but it’s absurdly pricey a Competitiveness spec is $143,995. Then you will find the forthcoming M5 CS, which lighter, even much more hardcore and has wonderful gold accents, but it commences at a lofty $142,995. If you are wanting to conserve some income, the conventional M5 is likely just as very good ninety five% of the time. And alongside those people exact same traces, actually, the $seventy seven,795 V8-powered M550i is genuinely all you have to have.

You happen to be certainly spoiled for alternative when it will come to BMW’s big, rapidly four-doors. And now that the M5 Competitiveness isn’t really rigid as a board, that alternative is harder than at any time.