Set to adopt an evolutionary design in the same vein as the flagship 7-Series, BMW’s mid-size contender in the premium segment can be seen here tackling the famous Nürburgring Nordschleife in Germany ahead of an expected launch sometime in 2017. It will use the same Cluster Architecture (CLAR) platform as its bigger sibling which means it will make extensive use of lightweight materials such as aluminum, high-strength steel and carbon fiber which in the case of the 7-Series has granted a massive weight loss of up to 130 kg.
The new 5-Series will have roughly the same size as the current model and should have just about the same array of engines as its bigger brother. This means it will probably get a six-cylinder, 3.0-liter TwinPower Turbo diesel engine rated at 265 bhp and 620 Nm, along with a gasoline version with the same displacement and an output standing at 326 bhp and 450 Nm. A beefier V8 4.4-liter twin-turbo could also join the range with 450 bhp and 650 Nm while a plug-in hybrid variant will be available likely with a small turbocharged gasoline engine teamed up to an electric motor.
Various reports are indicating the availability of an entry-level version with a 3-cylinder, 1.5-liter turbocharged gasoline engine, but we have our doubts BMW will actually install a three-banger in such a big car.
The prototype spotted in this latest spy video doesn’t have the production headlights and taillights while the body might not be final, but at least we get the chance to see it will have roughly the same shape as the current car. We are not expecting any major design changes taking into account the new 7-Series doesn’t look that much different than its predecessor.
As for the range-topping M5, this won’t be out sooner than 2018 and BMW has already announced it will not have more than 600 bhp while the chances of seeing a manual transmission are slim at the moment.