BMW has just launched the much awaited sixth-generation BMW 5-Series sedan in India. The new lineup is available as four variants, the 523i and 535i (petrol) and 525d and 530d (diesel). Earlier, the plan was to launch the new 5-Series a couple of months later but competition from the new Mercedes E-Class potentially prompted the company to launch their car earlier.
Both the diesel variants and 523i will be assembled at the company's Chennai plant and the existing production capacity too will be ramped up in order to bring it in line with BMW's increased sales target for 2010 while the 535i will be available as a completely-built unit. The 5-Series is BMW's highest selling model in BMW India's product portfolio.
In 2009, BMW managed to grab the top spot ahead of Mercedes with sales of 3619 units against 3247 of Mercedes. BMW's move to prepone the launch of the new car clearly reflects its strong expectations from the Indian market. Globally the past five generations of the 5-Series have sold a total of 55 lakh units. For 2010, BMW India expects a double digit growth for its sales.
Moving away from the unconventional bangled designs designed by Chris Bangle, the new 5-Series flaunts a more muscular design overall. The features and the amount of technology used in the new model are a generation ahead from its predecessor. The car, with a wheelbase of 2968 mm, is the longest wheelbase in its segment.
The 535i and 523i develop 306 bhp and 204 bhp respectively whereas the 530d and 525d produce 245 bhp and 204 bhp respectively. All four variants sport a straight-six configuration for the engines. The 523i is priced at Rs 38.9 Lakh, while the 535i costs Rs 58 Lakh. The 525d carries a tag of Rs 39.9 Lakh and the 530d costs Rs 45.9 Lakh.