BEHIND THE WHEEL: BMW M5
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 18, 2016
This is a big one, my M cherry being plucked. The car presented was in blue but it got me wondering why I didn’t like the colour as much I thought I would. As far as first impression goes, it doesn’t get better than this, the 5 breathes into life expelling the noise from hell through its quad exhaust and looks imposing with 20-inch wheels on. And and.. those side vents are so proportionately beautiful.
First thing to do is to turn off the start-stop mechanism and turn on seat ventilation. Things got even better after some acquainting because the M neither pitch nor roll like a ferry which is the case for a 528i. Body control is excellent since there was no noticeable flex or wallow like many two or more tonnes cars tend to.
Everything that’s M
No supercar drawbacks
Works best in M mode
Ridiculous road taxes
7-speed Dual Clutch
0-100 km/h: 4.3s
Top speed: 250 km/h (limited)
As soon as traffic cleared, I booted the throttle for just a few seconds only to find 200 showing on the head-up display. On full M mode, this rocket ship takes a second to ready itself then disappears into the horizon with a huge woosh. If the same were done at speeds below 100 km/h, you will be rewarded with rear end wagging. Thanks to sophisticated algorithms, not the fatal kind.
" With everything dialled into Sport Plus,
mister traction control is your best friend "
The M5 is a completely different flavour to the F10 range, its bespoke internals down to the seats act as constant reminders that this is no ordinary Hennessey, this is the full-fat Hennessey Paradis. I was absolutely bewitched by how this thing drives and how well it puts down power. On the subject of miles crunching, I wouldn’t mind taking a drive down Johor and back for forgetting supplements. That demonstrates how little fatigue was felt behind the wheel.
Fake exhaust noise could be heard rumbling away at daily commuting speeds does get tiring fortunately none can be in the back seats. As for the ride quality, the setup to the tauter side of things but nowhere close to being Audi’s kind of stiff. Frankly speaking it is pretty pliant because a C200 riding on 18s is worse.
" You’ll take the M5 every time if you needed to be
somewhere quickly and in comfort "
The most frustrating thing in an M5 is you can't unleash its potential most of the time. That aside, it isn’t as emotionally thrilling as the E60 M5 since not much of the eight cylinders could be heard even when engine response is set to Sport Plus. More of an everyday problem would be that it doesn’t have hold assist. Also rear seats could still be plusher like those in the front.
Those aside, the M5 is an excellent all-rounder. The 7-speed dual clutch transmission shifts imperceptibly and its slowest setting would please the most critical of passengers. Its tastefully blue painted brakes stop very well yet not at all grabby on slower speeds. Steering too is very well calibrated unlike most electric setups.
One can argue that a 535i does almost everything an M5 can, only fractionally slower for far less money. That’s true but a 535 have none of the goodies that make an M car so well loved. Hence there's just no substitute to an M5.