All previous generations of this family (and there were four) were in good demand and there is an explanation: the “five” is a kind of middle ground in terms of class, dynamics and comfort between a tight “three rubles” and a prestigious car of the 7th series .

Alexander KRASNOV

Author's drawing

In 2002, the current 5th series, which still has time to undergo light restyling, will be replaced by a model under the code number E60. According to Chris Bangle, the lead designer of the project, she will reveal a completely new approach to the family of cars of this class. The body still retains all the familiar features and elements of BMW's corporate identity, but will be perceived quite differently thanks to the very "active" tilt of the front and rear windows, short overhangs, a very short trunk lid and a more energetic front end.

The front axle, which is strongly shifted forward, will increase the legroom for the front passengers and the cabin as a whole. An extended base, in addition to increasing comfort, will also change the behavior of the car on the road: galloping will be virtually eliminated, and handling will improve. But besides purely technical parameters, another emotional vision of the car will appear - as more athletic and fast-paced. By the way, the project was born in the California BMW studio, as we have already said, under the leadership of Chris Bangle, whose “pen” entirely belongs to today's “third” family: a sedan, coupe and convertible.

His handwriting is visible in everything. But the promising 5th series is not just an enlarged copy of the "treshka": it is a completely independent model, just continuing the design direction taken. And in the image of the car, everything is kept, as a rule, "a little bit" - this is a very elegant and intelligent car, worthy of its predecessors. (It is interesting, for example, that the headlights are likely to be round, like the earlier models.) Note that in the promising family, in addition to the usual station wagon, there are coupes and convertibles that should attract new groups of customers.

The range of engines begins with completely new four-cylinder engines, which serve as a module for six- and eight-cylinder ones. Four-cylinder engines (1.8 and 2 liters) will have four valves per cylinder and variable valve timing. They will be released at the factory in Hams Hall (England).

For V-shaped "eights" plan two volumes - 3.5 and 4.5 liters with a capacity of 235 and 286 liters. with. respectively.

Of course, supersports versions are not forgotten. For example, an M5 sedan with a V8 engine (4.9 liter) with a capacity of 450 liters is already being prepared. with. True, BMW motorists have already prepared for the release of the M3 with 100 “horses” from one liter (capacity 343 liters. From.). Perhaps he will be the prototype.

All engines are aggregated with completely new gearboxes of the well-known company “Zanradfabrik” (ZF). Both boxes, both mechanical and automatic, have six steps. The same company has developed and will supply a fully electric steering gear for the new model, including two 42-volt electric motors. The system is called "Servo Electric."

We emphasize that the on-board network of a promising car is designed for 42 volts, as in the next 7th series. The “run-in” of such a network will take place at the current “five”, where next year all electric systems and units powered by a 42 V network will be installed. In total, the promising machine (E60) will have over 60 processors and 80 electric motors with a total capacity of 4 kW.

Perhaps they will use a rather unusual unit: a starter-generator, which is planned to be installed between the engine and gearbox. In starter mode, he is able to develop a power of about 8 kW, and after starting the engine will work in generator mode. Such

The 5th series turns out - "electric"!

It is planned to equip the car with air suspension with a "candle" "McPherson" in front and multi-link in the back. The levers in front and back will be made of aluminum alloy.


We begin the story of the predecessors with the very first BMW, in which the radiator lining had the appearance of characteristic nostrils: this is the 1933 BMW-303. It was with this car that the procession of the Bavarian brand began around the world. Moreover, some models of the company simply did not have competitors - they lived life in splendid isolation.

The fifth series (E12) first appeared in 1973. It replaced the well-known 2500 or 3.0C models. From its predecessors, the "five" took the best: four- and six-cylinder relatively powerful engines and a first-class design for those times. The independent spring suspension of all wheels made riding this car a real pleasure. The most powerful model (145 hp) reached a speed of 194 km / h - a good result for the early 70's. Yes, and to the "hundreds" it was accelerated in 9.9 s. Recall that this is a “simple” sedan, not a sports car, and it weighed a lot - 1700 kg.

The premiere of the next generation (the code of this body is E28) took place in 1981; the model was chosen by journalists as a 1982 car - the construction and design turned out to be so successful. There was only one four-cylinder engine, but there were as many as six in the gamut. The top of the lineup was the sports version of the M5 with a 286-liter engine. with. - she reached 245 km / h. Appearance continued the traditions of its predecessors: a slightly angular car with a negative slope of the radiator lining acquired swiftness. Naturally, the two branded "nostrils" are in place.

In 1988, this model was replaced by a new generation - code E34. It is noteworthy that after another four years, in 1992, two versions with V-shaped eight-cylinder engines appeared. Motors of such a scheme returned to BMW after an almost 30-year hiatus.

The appearance of the new "five" has changed significantly. The negative inclination of the radiator lining turned into an almost vertical one, the body became more plastic and looked almost a whole class more expensive, although it repeated element by element the stylistic scheme of its predecessors. Even round headlights have survived, although the world has already used rectangular blocks with might and main.

This family has replenished with the Touring version with a station wagon body, which expanded the circle of customers of the 5th series.

And finally, the current generation of the "five". The premiere of the car (E39 bodywork) took place in September 1995 in Frankfurt, where it made a splash. The extraordinary design, the abundance of all kinds of service “stuff”, increasing the level of security, a wide selection of engines and additional equipment, safety elements - all this made the new generation of the “five” out of reach for some time for competitors. Characteristics of the car and its modifications can be found in our annual catalog.

We note only a recent novelty - the M5 sedan with an engine capacity of 400 liters. with. This is a real hurricane, not a car. Imagine a maximum (forcibly limited!) Speed ​​of 250 km / h and dynamics - up to “hundreds” in 5.3 s - all on the basis of a simple “five”.