Three weeks after introducing the updated 2021 5 Series, BMW is adding the final piece of the puzzle, the M5.
There are no changes to the twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 engine, mind you. However, unlike other countries that will also get the regular M5 with 600 horsepower, BMW Canada chose to bring back only the M5 Competition rated at 617 horsepower. Generating 553 pound-feet of torque and mated to an eight-speed M Steptronic transmission, the car goes from 0-100 km/h in 3.3 seconds—quicker than the time it took you to read this sentence.
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Torque is distributed between the front and rear wheels seamlessly and fully variably by means of the transfer case’s electronically controlled multi-plate clutch, before the Active M Differential splits it again between the two rear wheels, as required. If you want, you can force all of the torque to the rear axle and enjoy the feeling of a true RWD car.
World-class performance is also the result of a specially tuned and more rigid chassis (with a ride height reduction of seven millimetres versus the standard M5), an enhanced suspension with three-mode adaptive damping control, dual-mode M Servotronic steering, as well as 20-inch M light-alloy wheels wrapped in 275/35R20 front and 285/35R20 rear tires. Braking is handled by standard with M Compound brakes (optionally M Carbon ceramic brakes) with perforated, inner-vented brake discs and six-piston fixed calipers.
Let’s not forget the flap-controlled, dual-branch M Sport exhaust system allowing drivers to adjust the soundtrack via the different engine modes. And speaking of which, the M5 Competition has a TRACK mode designed exclusively for use on race tracks. It deactivates all the comfort and safety functions of the driver assistance systems, switches the instrument cluster to M View, mutes the audio system and turns off the centre display so all the attention is focused on carving corners.
The 2021 BMW M5 Competition benefits from other updates to the 5 Series sedan, including a redesigned grille, headlights, taillights and bumpers. It adds various black accents for a more aggressive look. Also, customers can choose from a total of five new paint finishes, such as Motegi Red metallic seen here.
Inside, the larger centre touchscreen (12.3 inches) immediately catches the eye, while the latest version of BMW’s Intelligent Personal Assistant helps drivers interact with the car in a more natural way. Just say “Hey BMW” followed by a voice command.
Production of the 2021 BMW M5 will start next month and the first deliveries are scheduled for August. Canadian pricing is set at $121,000, which represents a drop of $1,500 from the 2020 M5 Competition.