The first M Performance 5 Series with a petrol engine
At first glance you might miss it. There are discreet accents on the mirrors, a different surround to the grille, a subtle aero kit, and blue brake calipers. There are also some modest badges which might end up being taken off. Because this is a 5 Series that can be your classy executive transport. Or it can be your four-door sports car with a vengeance.
Under the unassuming bonnet is a reworked version of the 4.4-litre V8, the twin-turbo unit now shovelling out 462bhp with an equally meaty 479lb/ft of torque. It all gets to the road through a reworked eight-speed auto box feeding into the xDrive all-wheel drive system.
The system favours the rears, but as yet exactly how drive is split remains unknown. What we do know is that the whole shebang should pass 62mph in 4.0 seconds on the way to a regulated 155mph.
And yet BMW reckons you can hoon around like that and still get 31.7mpg.
Other upgrades are all very M: M Performance for the exhaust, M Sport for the brakes and very M steering.
The M550i xDrive will join the 5 Series in March on the forecourts, and we reckon there will be plenty of M people lining up to sample this gorgeous street sleeper.