One of the most important upgrades made over the outgoing model is the implementation of a mild hybrid system with a 48V starter-generator that offers enhanced performance, better efficiency and improved driving comfort in all six-cylinder 5-Series models. This piece of tech includes brake energy regeneration which kicks in when the driver releases the accelerator, transforming the kinetic energy into electricity to be stored in the 48V battery. Energy recuperated is supplied to the 12V electrical system and powers the lights, steering, power windows, ventilation, audio system, and seat heating. Stored energy can also be used to provide additional drive power.
Sitting at the base of the hybrid range in the U.S. is the 2021 BMW 530e and 530e xDrive. Powering the duo is a 2.0-liter petrol engine with 181 hp and supplemented by a 107 hp electric drive unit incorporated into the 8-speed automatic transmission. Combined power sits at 288 hp and 310 lb-ft (420 Nm) of torque. Both variants can hit 60 mph (96 km/h) in 5.7 seconds and reach 130 mph (209 km/h) on all-season tires and 143 mph (230 km/h) with performance tires for the 530e xDrive and 146 mph (234 km/h) for the 530e.
Elsewhere in the 5-Series range is the 2021 BMW 530i and 530i xDrive models, both using a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 248 hp and 258 lb-ft (350 Nm) of torque, good enough for 0-60 mph (96 km/h) times of 5.9 seconds for both models.
The six-cylinder range kicks off with the 540i and 540i xDrive, both using a BMW 3.0-liter six-cylinder TwinPower Turbo engine rated at 335 hp and 332 lb-ft (450 Nm). The 540i can hit 60 mph in 4.9 seconds while the all-wheel drive 540i xDrive achieves the same mark in 4.6 seconds. Topping out the U.S. range is the updated M550i xDrive featuring a 4.4-liter TwinPower Turbo engine with 523 hp and 553 lb-ft (750 Nm) of torque, resulting in a 0-60 mph time of 3.6 seconds and a top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h)