Cable-news pundits aren’t the only ones jumping the gun with news of 2016.
Just as some political pundits are already wildly conjecturing which politicians will be running for presidential in 2016, car scribes like us can’t wait to get details on models that won’t hit showrooms for years.
Take the BMW 5 Series, which will receive a substantial overhaul for the 2016 model year, according to Autocar.
The next 5 Series will ride on an all-new platform, and will feature more expressive styling and something today’s tech-filled cars really need: a beefed-up electrical system.
After the controversial 2004-2010 E60 5 Series, BMW went a more conservative route with the car’s current styling. The result is a car that’s handsome, but a bit boring. That may change with the next model.
The 2016 5 Series will reportedly borrow styling cues from the Gran Lusso Coupe concept. That means it will look longer, lower, and wider, which is always a good thing. The Gran Lusso’s grinning front end also has a bit of the E12 5 Series in it, which would make for a subtle nod to the car’s heritage.
Body styles will include the current sedan, wagon, and (hideous) Gran Touring hatchback. A revised 6 Series coupe, convertible, and four-door Gran Coupe will likely join the 2016 5 Series shortly after its launch.
Under the new sheet metal will be an equally new platform dubbed OKL (Oberklasse or “luxury class”), which will form the basis for many of BMW’s future models, including the next 6 Series and 7 Series, as well as the X5 and X6 “Sport-Activity Vehicles”.
All of these vehicles could get a 48-volt electrical system to run the many gadgets that have become obligatory in modern luxury cars. However, a final decision on those exact details hasn’t yet been made.
The next 5 Series will be powered by the usual array of inline-four and six-cylinder gasoline and diesel engines, plus a V8 model specifically targeted at U.S. buyers. Transmission options will reportedly include a six-speed manual and nine-speed automatic.
The midsize Bimmer may also get the turbocharged three-cylinder engine from the i8, or possibly a version of the sports car’s entire plug-in hybrid powertrain. BMW has already shown that powertrain in a plug-in hybrid X5 concept, so it could be transplanted into another car.
At the other end of the spectrum will be a new M5, which will reportedly get an updated version of the current model’s twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8, producing upwards of 600 horsepower. BMW M may also follow rival Mercedes-Benz AMG and offer all-wheel drive for the first time.
Do these potential 5 Series upgrades have you wishing 2016 would come sooner? Tell us in the comments.
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