BMW Desert-Testing Latest Sedans

A latest BMW 5 Series is on the way, and we just got a fresh glimpse at the midsize luxury sedan. We spotted an early prototype of the new BMW 5 Series, which will likely debut as a 2017 model, out in the Mojave Desert along with a refreshed 3 Series wearing hybrid badging. The popular 5 Series and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class are both set for upcoming debuts, so it won’t be long before that sales battle is renewed.
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The new series appeared to be covering up what BMW calls air breathers and air curtains around the front wheels to aid aerodynamics. Already, the outgoing 2016 model is efficient when it comes to EPA-rated mileage, with the rear-drive turbo-four 528i at 23/34 mpg city/highway, the turbo-six 535i at 20/31 mpg, and the turbodiesel-six at 26/38 mpg. On the next-gen 5 Series, expect the turbo-four to continue serving as the base model, with a revised turbo-six making more than the current car’s 300 hp and 300 lb-ft of torque. The 2016 BMW 340i produces 320 hp and 330 lb-ft from a revised turbocharged inline-six; combine added power with what we’re guessing will be minor weight savings and we may have the makings of an even quicker 535i. In Motor Trend testing, a 2012 535i took 5.5 seconds to reach 60 mph with the eight-speed automatic, in rear-drive form.The small caravan of prototype BMWs, we also saw a 7 Series car and a refreshed 3 Series with hybrid badging. Most likely, this latter model was a prototype of the upcoming 330e, the plug-in hybrid that’s expected to have a combined output of around 250 hp and 310 lb-ft. BMW says the 0-60 mph sprint will take 6.1 seconds, or for hypermiling enthusiasts, an anticipated EV-only range of 22 miles.


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