BMW Group South Africa has confirmed the local facelifted 5 Series range will include the M550i xDrive variant at launch in the final quarter of 2020. M5-Lite, anyone?

The Munich-based firm’s local arm says the refreshed line-up will comprise the 520d, 530i and M550i xDrive, as well as the M5 Competition (an updated version of the latter has yet to be revealed). That suggests the current line-up’s 530d and 540i will fall away when the facelifted range is introduced towards the end of the year.

Interestingly, BMW SA furthermore confirms the local line-up will include “no hybrid models”, meaning the addition of 48 V systems to various four- and six-cylinder engines in Europe will not be implemented here (the plug-in hybrid 530e and 545e xDrive are seemingly off the table, too).

So, what do we know about the new M550i xDrive? Well, it employs the automaker’s familiar twin-turbo 4,4-litre V8 petrol engine, which sends 390 kW and 750 N.m to all four corners (the rear-biased all-wheel-drive system works with an M Sport differential) via an eight-speed automatic transmission. BMW says that’s enough for a sprint from standstill to 100 km/h in just 3,8 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h.

The M550i xDrive furthermore features a range of model-specific design cues, including the M Sport package, a bootlid spoiler and a "Cerium Grey" metallic finish for the side-mirror caps, grille surround, inlays in the front air intakes and model lettering.

The M Performance vehicle ships standard on 19-inch M light-alloy wheels in a Y-spoke design, while dual trapezoidal tailpipe finishers in Black Chrome provide what BMW calls a “four-branch look” round back. Adaptive M suspension and M Sport brakes (with callipers painted in either blue or red) are also part of the package.

Inside, the M550i xDrive gains “exclusive” features over and above those included in the M Sport package, such as model badges on the door-sill plates and in the instrument cluster display. In addition, the BMW Live Cockpit Professional system is fitted as standard.


See Full BMW M5 price and specs here