BMW is not going to be left out from the EV movement, in fact the company is committed to going all out in expanding its eDrive and iPerformance vehicles to drivers who wants to be surrounded in premium refinement with the driving dynamics the brand is known for, without using or as little amount of fossil fuels as possible.
Now, their hybrid vehicles have been widely adopted by executives and business owners in their X5s and with sheer luck many now have adopted with 530e as their daily cars. Not too long after the launch of the G30 generation of the 5 Series, the Plug-In Hybrid version retains many of the saloon’s best characteristics, now with a little bit more punch and a much-improved fuel economy.
Under the watchful eyes of former design chief Karim Habib, the latest G30 retains the 5’s strong, dynamic proportions, precise contours and taut surfaces characterize the purist, athletic appearance of the BMW 5 Series Sedan.
Practical, spacious and sensible, you won’t find large LCD screens here instead the latest tech that is intuitively integrated into a rather conservative looking interior with plenty of interesting features waiting to be discovered.
The Internet of Things is truly a magical thing and the BMW ConnectedDrive leverages on this; services including Intelligent Emergency Call that connects directly to BMW’s call centre with location and details for deployment of emergency services, Teleservices, Concierge Services and Remote Services.
When you’re saving on your phone data, there’s a 20GB memory hard drive to upload your favourite audio files in, and Bluetooth and USB devices with smartphone connectivity is available when you have plenty of data to spare.
The 530i is powered by a two-litre four-cylinder B48 engine with twin-scroll turbocharging, direct injection, variable valve lift (Valvetronic) and variable valve timing (VANOS). This compact mill makes 252hp from 5,200 to 6,500rpm and 350Nm of torque from 1,450 to 4,800 rpm. The electric motor makes 65kW (87hp) at 2,500rpm and with a near-matching 250Nm of torque available from 0 to 2,500rpm. With both engine and electric motor working in unison, the total system output is 248hp at 5,000 – 6,500 rpm and 420Nm of torque available from 0 to 2,500rpm. In theory, with a battery range of 32km, you could practically drive solely on electric to and from work provided if there’s a charging station at both ends.
Despite grown slightly in size, the G30 isn’t a difficult car to get around. As mentioned, the driving ergonomics being pretty spot-on, no matter how high or low the driver sits, there’s no problems in looking out and around with minimal blind spots. Even navigating through the tight multi-storey parking complex made around cars of the 1980’s is not a problem either thanks to ultrasonic sensors that warn you with audio cues and visual feedback of your immediate surrounding.
If you’re not too confident in your parking skills, or just being plain lazy, the 530e can very much park by its own; the same ultra sonic sensors ‘sniff’ out for available spaces at speeds below 35 km/h. Once the car finds the right spot, simply follow the simple instructions and you’ll be able to park hands-free, and can be overridden at any time. When backing out from a parking spot, Crossing Traffic Warning and Rear Collision Warning does its job competently especially in busy streets.
When it comes to performance, BMW delivers. It is like what Ferrari is to Formula 1 and Porsche is to Endurance Racing, which the Bavarian automaker has most of its successes in Touring Car racing. Weighing just slightly over 1.8 tonnes, – a featherweight in today’s standard – the G30 is able to reach 0 – 100 km/h in 6 seconds and tops out at its electronically limited 250km/h top speed as tested… and getting there is almost effortless with plenty of lateral stability.