China is not only the largest market for BMW but also a key driver of innovation and design for the German automaker. The new BMW 5 Series Sedan and the new BMW i5, which were unveiled at the Chengdu Motor Show in August 2023, are the latest examples of how BMW tailors its products to meet the specific needs and preferences of Chinese customers.
The new 5 Series Sedan and the BMW i5 are both based on the same platform, but they differ significantly in terms of powertrain, styling, and features. The 5 Series Sedan offers a range of petrol, diesel, and plug-in hybrid options, while the BMW i5 is a fully electric vehicle that boasts a range of up to 600 kilometers (373 miles) on a single charge. Both models are exclusively produced at the Dadong plant in Shenyang, operated by the BMW Brilliance Automotive joint venture.
A longer wheelbase, more space, and more luxury
One of the most distinctive features of the new 5 Series Sedan and the BMW i5 for the Chinese market is their longer wheelbase, which adds 130 millimeters (5.1 inches) to the length of the standard model. This translates into more legroom and comfort for the rear passengers, who often use premium sedans in China.
To further enhance the rear-seat experience, both models offer a 31.1-inch panoramic display with 8K resolution and 5G connectivity, borrowed from the flagship 7 Series. The display can be used for entertainment, navigation, or productivity purposes and can be controlled by touch, gesture, voice, or a remote controller. Other features available for both models include:
- A four-zone climate control.
- A Bower & Wilkins premium audio system.
- A massage function for the seats.
The new BMW 5 Series Sedan and the BMW i5 also feature some exclusive design elements that reflect the tastes of a young generation of customers in China who value inspiring charisma and individuality. For instance, both models have gold accents all around, such as on the outline of the kidney grille, on the rims, and on the window line. On the C-pillar, an illuminated "5" pulses in light blue on the i5 when the vehicle is charging and in white on the 5 Series Sedan with a combustion engine.