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2018 BMW M5

Starting at $104,595

10/10 C/D RATING
2018 bmw m5
BMW|Car and Driver
10/10 C/D RATING

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  • Highs Eye-popping power, excellent handling, good road manners.
  • Lows Eye-popping price, subdued appearance for a performance model, no manual transmission option.
  • Verdict The M5 is brutally quick and thrilling on the track, but that doesn't mean it can't also serve as a comfortable luxury sedan.


The 2018 BMW M5 is a return to form for one of the world’s most respected luxury sports sedans. Where the previous iteration felt robotic and disengaged, the latest M5 delivers incredible straight-line speed, tremendous grip, and steering responses that make the car come to life again. Driving purists will only lament the loss of a manual transmission and the addition of all-wheel drive until they spend time behind the wheel of the M5.

What's New for 2018?

The name is the same, but the attitude is completely different. The 2018 M5 is powered by a 600-hp twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V-8 that sends power to all four wheels via the car’s standard all-wheel drive system. Gone are the previous M5’s rear-wheel steering, active roll bars, and other features that only worked to numb the driving experience. With launch control, the latest M5 scorched its way from zero to 60 mph in only 2.8 seconds. Despite the addition of all-wheel drive, the 2018 M5 weighs less than the outgoing version, thanks partly to features like a carbon-fiber roof, a lithium-ion battery, greater use of aluminum, and available carbon-ceramic brakes.


Original MSRP:

  • Base: $104,595

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Engine, Transmission, and Performance

The BMW faithful might be wary of an M5 that comes standard with a conventional eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. Trust us, this hardware brings the 2018 M5 to life when the twin-turbo V-8 unleashes its 600 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque. Grip is heroic while cornering, and BMW offers the option of switching the car into rear-wheel drive mode for extra fun. While it’s a thrill on a racetrack, we found the M5 just as lively and entertaining on regular roads, where the balanced chassis and steering feedback make it a joy to drive. When you’re not in the mood to test the Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tires' limits of adhesion, dial the drive mode selector to the Comfort setting and relax. Driven sedately, the M5 is as docile as any regular BMW 5 series.

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Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy testing and reporting procedures have changed over time. For the latest numbers on current and older vehicles, visit the EPA’s website and select Find & Compare Cars.

Interior, Comfort, and Cargo

The M5's five-passenger cabin is comfortable yet businesslike in terms of materials and design. The fact that BMW centers the controls around the act of driving is an added bonus. There are still buttons and dials to control frequently used adjustments related to heating and cooling, as well as radio and volume settings. With 600 horsepower on tap, the last thing you want to do is spend your day blindly jabbing at a screen. The front seats are supportive and hold you in place without going wild with excessive boy-racer bolstering. Space in the back is suitable for adults, and cargo room measures around 18 cubic feet.

Infotainment and Connectivity

The M5 features a 10.2-inch infotainment system controlled via the touchscreen itself or by steering wheel-mounted controls, the iDrive controller between the front seats, voice commands, or even gesture controls. Twirl your finger at the center of the dash and you can adjust the volume up or down—though warn your passengers first. This is a very intuitive system, no matter how you control it. One notable drawback is that despite the M5’s six-digit starting price, BMW charges extra for Apple CarPlay connectivity.

Safety Features and Crash Test Ratings

For more information about the BMW M5’s crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites.


Some older vehicles are still eligible for coverage under a manufacturer's Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) program. For more information visit our guide to every manufacturer's CPO program.


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