With a completely stock car with no modifications.
After visiting Estoril in Portugal to meet its predecessors, the new 2018 BMW M5 travelled to China to show what it’s really capable of. With BMW works driver Bruno Spengler behind the wheel, the first-ever M5 with an all-wheel drive layout and a selectable pure RWD mode set a new lap record at the Shanghai International Circuit.
With a time of 2:22.828, the new M5 is now the quickest production four-door sedan to lap the Formula 1 track on the outskirts of the Chinese metropolis. DTM champion Spengler smashed the previous record by approximately five seconds, despite the cold weather and relatively bad track conditions.
BMW explains it has used a fully stock production M5 without any modifications, underlining the automaker’s “philosophy of producing road-going vehicles which you can take to the track at any time.” After achieving the new record, Spengler identified the “excellent balance” of the sedan as the key factor for its amazing overall performance.
“It’s very agile and responsive, and the increased traction with the four wheel drive makes this car very easy to drive. It is also lighter than the previous generation, which plays an important role on a track like this.”
The Shanghai track record might be beaten again soon, as BMW is already working on a Competition Package, which will be added to the M5 lineup next year. It is expected to boast more than the current 600 horsepower (441 kilowatts), coming from the same 4.4-liter V8 biturbo engine. Chassis, brakes, and suspension upgrades should make the four-door sedan even faster on track.
Gallery: 2018 BMW M5: First Drive
The standard M5 already has a quite impressive acceleration to 62 miles per hour (100 kilometers per hour) in just 3.4 seconds, putting it very close to the supercar league. The Competition Package-equipped models will shave off a few tenths of a second.
Gallery: 2018 BMW M5 on Shanghai International Circuit
Munich. The new BMW M5 (combined fuel consumption: 10.5 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 241 g/km*) demonstrated its outstanding driving properties and the perfect combination of luxury and sportiness at the “Shanghai International Circuit”. BMW works driver Bruno Spengler set a new lap record for a four-door production saloon, clocking a time of 2:22.828 minutes at the Formula 1 circuit on the outskirts of the Chinese metropolis.
Although Spengler was making his first appearance at the circuit, and the conditions were not ideal on the cold and damp track, the 2012 DTM champion smashed the previous record by five seconds. The BMW M5, which Spengler had at his disposal for his record-breaking drive, was a production model without any modifications for the racetrack. This underlines BMW M’s philosophy of producing road-going vehicles which you can take to the track at any time.
“Besides power and torque, I suppose the secret of this car is its excellent balance,” said Spengler, whose DTM career includes 15 race wins and 48 podiums so far. “It’s very agile and responsive, and the increased traction with the four wheel drive makes this car very easy to drive. It is also lighter than the previous generation, which plays an important role on a track like this.”
The BMW M5: the new high-performance sedan.
Thanks to numerous innovative features, the new BMW M5 offers perfect handling up to the vehicle’s dynamics limits – both on the road and on the racetrack. These include the newly designed M-specific four-wheel drive system M xDrive being employed in the BMW M5 for the first time. It guarantees optimised driving dynamics through precise handling and perfect traction. The heart of the BMW M5, the 4.4-litre V8 engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology, has been extensively revised by our M engineers. It delivers 441 kW/600 hp and a maximum torque of 750 Nm, offering a significant increase in performance vs. the predecessor models. Acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h with the new 8-speed Steptronic transmission featuring Drivelogic is just 3.4 seconds. The M-specific suspension helps optimise driving dynamics. Weight is also a crucial factor in terms of performance and has been further reduced by the roof being made from carbon fibre reinforced plastic.