The seventh-generation BMW 5 Series hasn’t been on sale long. In fact since launching in February, we’ve already had the Touring estate and now, the E-Class and XF rival has gone all plug-in hybrid on us.
Rather than name it something straightforward like the ‘5 Series plug-in hybrid’ – an approach employed by most sound-minded car brands – BMW has gone with ‘530e iPerformance’; just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?
As the hammer draws ever closer to falling on diesel’s head, plug-in hybrids – especially petrol-based powertrains like this – are going to become more of a thing.
The first 5 Series that you can plug in (which isn’t its tagline but totally should’ve been) still uses a petrol engine – a 248bhp four-cylinder twin-turbo unit – but this is mated to a 93bhp electric motor to provide super-efficient running costs without compromising the kind of drive experience you’d expect from any other 5 Series.
On a combined cycle of motorway and inner city driving, it can return 141.2mpg whilst emitting just 44g/km of CO2. Using just the electric motor alone, it can cover up to 31 miles and reach 87mph. Add the petrol engine into the mix and it can go for up to 404 miles, says BMW.
This is all rather sensible though, what about that ‘iPerformance’? Well, yep, it has ample zip too, hitting 62mph from nothing in 6.2 seconds with a top speed of 146mph.
BMW has aspirations of selling 100,000 electrified cars in 2017 and at time of writing, it has already managed 45,000 and the plug-in 5 Series should certainly help push sales.
The car has already won favourable write-ups from the motoring press, most notably, a four-star review from Auto Express that hailed its useful electric range, decent performance and its suitability as a cheap-to-run business car.
The BMW 530e iPerformance is available now, priced from £41,485 with the plug-in car grant included.