What makes the F90 special?
Dissecting the new M5
EVEN with the new M xDrive system underneath, the F90 weighs less than (at 1855kg) its forebear thanks to a carbon fibre-reinforced plastic roof and a lighter exhaust system. Optional carbonceramic brakes cut 23kg from the total.
FOR the first time the M5 uses a Steptronic auto (not a DCT) for smoother shifts at regular speeds, while still delivering rapid-fire shifts. Familiar throttle, damper and steering options can be assigned to the racy red M1 and M2 buttons found on the steering wheel.
ALL-WHEEL drive is masterminded by the Central Intelligence Module. Its tools are the transfer ’box and the Active M Diff, which sits in a meaty subframe at the rear. System analysis streams the data before working out the best place to put the V8’s force.
THE G30’s bodyshell is a fine start point, but the M5’s rear axle has been pinned down with heavy additional bracing. Up front, a new bulkhead reduces flex at the front struts. Both claim to provide a more rigid platform from which the M-fettled suspension can work.
EXPECT to spend a lot of time looking at the screen. In the M5 the iDrive or touchcontrolled system keeps you up to speed on your chosen xDrive setting and how much DSC you’ve got wound on. Info is doubled up on the driver’s display, too.
ON-PAPER figures are hard to ignore with the F90. The 4.4-litre V8 punches out 441kW/750Nm, it can reach 100km/h from rest in 3.4sec, hit 200km/h in 11.1sec and top out at 305km/h with the M Driver’s Package optioned.