Luxo-barge, cruise ship, “jeez, it’s big” – just some of the words used to describe the mighty BMW 5 Series by colleagues and friends on first sight.
They’re right – externally, the 5 Series is a large car, a millimetre under 4,900mm in length and 1,860mm wide, though the dimensions are slightly smaller than the Audi A6. Inside, it appears ever bigger with bags of leg and head room for front and rear passengers thanks to the longest wheelbase in class. The boot, meanwhile, is capacious, swallowing 520 litres.
Despite the dimensions, the 5 Series never feels like a big car on the road. The steering is light, though not remote, and the car feels nimble away from the main road straights.
With Eco Pro performance selected, the 5 Series is achieving high 40s mpg on longer journeys and low 40s on the daily 12-mile commute – around 30% below the official 68.9mpg claimed by this 109g/km emissions model. Best result, under frugal driving, topped out at 54mpg.
Competition in the executive car sector is heating up with the excellent E-Class laying down a real challenge. However, the 5 Series is still a highly attractive car for fleets.