BMW 530i keeps up with 7 Series but in a small package – Dallas News

Posted: Friday, February 10, 2017

The latest version of BMW’s flagship 5 Series sedan offers the same good looks as the bulkier 7 Series but serves them up in a smaller package with a smaller price tag to match.

The seventh-generation 5 Series is being offered as the 530i, base price $51,200, and the 540i, base price $56,450.

You would be forgiven for wondering if the models are actually new, as the cars don’t look dramatically different from those that came before. But look closer. The hood is smoother, and the grille is larger. On the side, there’s a crease that runs the length of the body. Subtle stuff? Perhaps. But in Germany, this constitutes a redesign.

As you’d expect, BMW’s midsize sedan is once again offered with rear-wheel drive or all-wheel xDrive — as the automaker calls its patented system — for an extra $2,300. While the new 5 Series has dropped 137 pounds through increased use of aluminum, magnesium and high-strength steel, it lacks the 7-Series’ exotic carbon core structure. Still, the models share many other traits.

Before we get to that, though, a little background is in order.

The 530i comes with a 248-horsepower turbocharged 2-liter inline four-cylinder engine used in lesser BMWs, while the 540i has a more potent 335-horsepower 3-liter inline six-cylinder engine.

Other variants are scheduled to follow, including the M550i xDrive with a fire-breathing 456-horsepower turbocharged V-8, as well as its Bizarro World opposite, the 530e plug-in hybrid with an estimated 248 horsepower emanating from its turbocharged four-cylinder engine and electric motor.

While none of that seems too different from the 2016 5 Series, notable changes have been made.

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