BMW’s subtle display of power
WHILE BMW continues to build luxury sedans and SUVs with a performance edge, the far-seeing German marque is also expanding its energy efficient plug-in stable.
The BMW 530e joins the 330e, X5 xDrive40e, 740e, i3 and i8 in BMW’s iPerformance line-up. But interestingly, it does so at the same price as the petrol-powered 530i with the same luxury and same spec.
We plugged in to the 530e’s delights for a week.
Luxurious quilted seating sets the tone for interior design of the 530e with long lines and stylish accessories completing a reserved but attractive picture.
Unlike the outside though, where the 530e’s electrical underpinnings have subtle outputs in measured badging and the plug-in port on the front left of the car, the interior is a much more involved participants.
Both the infotainment screen and virtual cockpit put the efficiency information front and centre so you know at a glance just how friendly you are being to the environment.
Like the rest of the range, the 530e is wellequipped with standard features including adaptive LED headlights, 19-inch alloys, heated front seats, automatic tailgate, wireless smartphone charging and a 16-speaker Harman Kardon sound system.
The BMW 530e has a conventional 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine that produces 135kW of power and 290Nm of torque. It also has a 83kW/230Nm electric motor. Combined, that is 70Nm more torque lower down the rev range than a conventional 5-Series petrol, but given the 530e is also 230kg heavier, it certainly needs it.
A superb eight-speed automatic transmission is an able ally with drive to the rear wheels.
BMW claims combined figures of 2.3L/100km. The best we could manage over our week was 4.3L/100km, which is pretty good. We did get to 30km on pure electric power. BMW has really stirred things up here by offering the BMW 530e at the same price and specification as a more conventional 5-Series product. Its subtler homage to green power also gives it an appeal among buyers who don’t need to shout about their
Vani Naidoo The plug-in BMW 530e is offered at the same price, luxury and spec as the petrol-powered 530i.