A BMW employee has just (re)confirmed what we had long suspected, that the new M5 will adopt all-wheel drive.
While speaking with Australian publication GoAuto at the local launch of the new 5-Series, BMW Munich product expert Sven Arens said that to offer the best performance, the company simply had to send power to the tarmac through all four wheels.
“Yes, all-wheel-drive. 20:80 [torque] split,” he confirmed. “Make the calculations yourself. Engines have become so powerful. For a reasonable saloon car, the cut off is 700Nm (516 lb-ft) of torque on two driven wheels. With the current M5 we are at 680Nm (501 lb-ft) and thanks to the fact that we use Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires, it can get all the traction and all the power on the ground.
“If we are now stepping up to 600hp, which means we are going to go beyond the 700Nm of torque, only if you would use a [Michelin Pilot Sport] Cup 2 tire would you be able to transfer that to the ground. But then it means your customer would come in every 5000km (3,100 miles) for new tires. They won’t be very happy,” he said.
By offering all-wheel drive, BMW’s new M5 will be better equipped to compete with the next-generation Mercedes-AMG E63, also offering all-wheel drive. Both cars will therefore give the Audi RS6 and RS7 twins a run for their money.
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