BMW 5 Series Model Overview

New BMW 5 Series

2019 BMW 5 Series Overview
2019 BMW 5 Series
New 2019 BMW 5 Series For Sale
$53,400 - $74,450
$50,160 - $69,740
Used 2019 BMW 5 Series For Sale
Avg. Used Price: $64,647

Used BMW 5 Series

2017 BMW 5 Series Overview
Used 2017 BMW 5 Series For Sale
Avg. Price: $45,082
GREAT Deals 7 GREAT Deals
2016 BMW 5 Series Overview
Used 2016 BMW 5 Series For Sale
Avg. Price: $28,763
GREAT Deals 18 GREAT Deals

BMW 5 Series Questions

Buying A Used BMW 535ix Wagon

I’m looking at buying a 2008 BMW 535ix wagon with 123k miles. They’re asking $9995 for it. I’ve heard good and bad about these cars, either they’re amazing with no issues or they’re in the shop mo...

Do I Have To Change The Rotors?

Do I have to change the rotors when I change the brake pads on my 2007 BMW 525i? How long do the brakes usually last?

Concerned About A Buying A Used BMW

I’m looking to buy a 2008 535ix wagon with 123k miles. I’ve read good and bad things about these cars. They either have zero issues or they’re in the shop more then out. I just received the carfax...

Credit Specialist

I have seen some info on a credit specialist Is there anyone that can tell me more information and if this is truly legitimate source that can assist and complete credit score chang...


Car Starts, Splitters Then Dies For An Hour

Hi I have a 2013 BMW 535i - the issue I'm having is that when I try to start the car, it cranks, turns over, and then RPMs flicker and the car dies. If I leave the car for an hour or so, it starts ...

Older BMW 5 Series

1996 BMW 5 Series Overview
1996 BMW 5 Series
4 pictures
1995 BMW 5 Series Overview
1995 BMW 5 Series
303 pictures
1995 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1994 BMW 5 Series Overview
1994 BMW 5 Series
268 pictures
1994 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1993 BMW 5 Series Overview
1993 BMW 5 Series
89 pictures
1993 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1992 BMW 5 Series Overview
1992 BMW 5 Series
120 pictures
1992 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1991 BMW 5 Series Overview
1991 BMW 5 Series
108 pictures
1991 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1990 BMW 5 Series Overview
1990 BMW 5 Series
202 pictures
1990 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1989 BMW 5 Series Overview
1989 BMW 5 Series
58 pictures
1988 BMW 5 Series Overview
1988 BMW 5 Series
70 pictures
1987 BMW 5 Series Overview
1987 BMW 5 Series
34 pictures
1986 BMW 5 Series Overview
1986 BMW 5 Series
52 pictures
1985 BMW 5 Series Overview
1985 BMW 5 Series
119 pictures
1985 BMW 5 Series reviews:
1984 BMW 5 Series Overview
1984 BMW 5 Series
9 pictures
1983 BMW 5 Series Overview
1983 BMW 5 Series
2 pictures
1982 BMW 5 Series Overview
1982 BMW 5 Series
24 pictures
1981 BMW 5 Series Overview
1981 BMW 5 Series
5 pictures
1980 BMW 5 Series Overview
1980 BMW 5 Series
1979 BMW 5 Series Overview
1979 BMW 5 Series
1978 BMW 5 Series Overview
1978 BMW 5 Series
1977 BMW 5 Series Overview
1977 BMW 5 Series
1976 BMW 5 Series Overview
1976 BMW 5 Series
1975 BMW 5 Series Overview
1975 BMW 5 Series
1974 BMW 5 Series Overview
1974 BMW 5 Series
1973 BMW 5 Series Overview
1973 BMW 5 Series
1972 BMW 5 Series Overview
1972 BMW 5 Series

BMW 5 Series Overview

When the BMW 5 Series debuted at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 1972, it marked both the culmination of past designs and the wave of the future for the German-based automaker. The midsize, four-door, rear-wheel-drive 5 Series grew out of BMW's New Class, a line of four-door sport sedans launched in the 1960s, which were BMW's bestselling vehicles up to that point. The New Class, including the 1500, the 1800, and the 2000, rode on a sport-oriented chassis with a firm, performance-tuned suspension, and featured a roomy five-passenger cabin with padded surfaces and an upscale feel. BMW carried that suspension, as well as the luxury-oriented interior, forward to the new 5 Series.

However, the automaker made a departure when naming the first 5 Series trims, the 520 and the 520i. Instead of using the previous naming system, which consisted of four digits, BMW introduced a new three-digit nomenclature, in which the first digit indicates the platform (in this case, the 5-Series), while the last two numbers indicate engine displacement--2.0 liters in this case, plus injection for one trim, resulting in the "i" designation. BMW continues to use that naming system for its vehicles today.

Outside, the new 5 Series displayed distinctive Italian/European design cues, with dual headlights, a dual-kidney grille, large windows, and an overall sleek shape with a low-slung waistline. The rear pillar also incorporated a distinctive BMW design element called the Hofmeister kink, a forward bend low in the pillar behind the rear window.

For the first time, the automaker used computer modeling when designing some of the 5 Series' safety features, such as the front and rear crumple zones. BMW also used roll-over bars in the roof to help stiffen the body, resulting in tight, responsive handling.

While initially powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, the 5 Series added the 525 trim, powered by a six-cylinder engine, in 1973. The first U.S. 5 Series trim, the 530i, was equipped with a fuel-injected 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine generating 176 horsepower. It appeared stateside in 1975. A few years later, BMW rolled out the 528i, with a slightly less powerful, 169-hp, 2.8-liter six-cylinder.

The first-generation 5 Series, which rode on the E12 platform, lasted from its debut in 1972 until 1981. The second generation, with its E28 platform, included the 535i and the diesel-powered 524td (for turbodiesel). It was replaced in 1988 by the third generation, which rode on the E34 platform and included two V8 trims, the 530i and 540i. Both debuted in the mid-1990s.

The wheelbase of the fourth-generation 5 Series, which bowed in 1995, was stretched nearly 3 inches, resulting in the E39 platform and a profile that more closely resembles current 5 Series cars. Highlights included the V8-powered 540i trim. The fifth-generation 5 Series, which took to the roads starting in 2003, proved somewhat controversial, due to its exterior design, particularly in the hindquarters. It rode on the E60/61 platform, and included such options as Active Cruise Control, Active Steering, and High-Beam Assist. In addition, BMW offered the fifth-generation trims with optional xDrive four-wheel drive.

With the debut of the current sixth generation in 2010, the 5 Series took an evolutionary step forward while also gazing into the past. Gone are the controversial design elements of the previous generation, while some visual cues, such as the lines along the hood, were drawn from earlier 5 Series designs.

Once again, BMW stretched the 5 Series' wheelbase, this time to nearly 117 inches, an improvement of more than 3 inches over the previous generation, and to nearly 193 inches overall. The platform, now designated the F10, features an upgraded suspension, with a multilink configuration in the rear. The new 5 Series remains a rear-wheel-drive vehicle, although owners can add all-wheel drive as an option. Sixth-generation trims include the 240-hp 528i, the 300-hp 535i, and the 400-hp 550i sedan.

BMW 5 Series Experts

  • #1
    Michael Branan
  • #2
    Robert Charlson
  • #3
View All