BMW revealed today the production version of the ActiveHybrid 5 a.k.a. the hybrid version of 5-Series Sedan. As expected, the vehicle is based on the 535i, which means that it is powered by a 3.0-litre petrol engine delivering 225 kW/306 hp and peak torque of 400 Newton metres (295 lb-ft).
The synchronous electric motor of the BMW ActiveHybrid 5 is integrated into the housing of the eight-speed automatic gearbox, saving space. According to Bmw, this electric motor delivers 40 kW/55 hp and makes 210 Newton metres (155 lb-ft) of torque available from rest.
This means that the system delivers a combined output of 250 kW/340 hp and it is able to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.9 seconds. Regarding the fuel consumption, the Bmw ActiveHybrid 5 has an average fuel consumption of 6.4-7.0 litres per 100 kilometres (44 – 40 mpg imp) and has CO2 emissions of just 149 – 163 grams per kilometer.
As expected the car’s lithium-ion high-performance battery is charged every time the vehicle is braking or when it’s coasting. Just like the other vehicles, the electric motor helps the car when it accelerates. Added to which, while coasting at speeds of up to 160 km/h (100 mph) in ECO PRO mode, the combustion engine can be switched off and fully decoupled.
The car also has a standard hybrid start-stop function while the power electronics are linked up with the standard-fitted navigation system Professional. Comparing it with the standard 5-Series, the ActiveHybrid 5 features the “ActiveHybrid 5” lettering on the C-pillars, BMW kidney grille with galvanised slats and exhaust matt chrome tailpipes set the exterior apart from the other models in the range.
As an option, it can be fitted with 18-inch Streamline light-alloy wheels. Regarding the interior colours, upholstery and interior trim elements the customers can choose all the goodies seen on the standard 5-Series Sedan.
The BMW ActiveHybrid 5 has advanced power electronics that takes performance to a whole new level. On top of regulating the internal combustion engine’s operation as well as the electric motor to respond to any driving situation, the electronics also makes way for forward-thinking and proactive analysis of the driving conditions to help make the car more energy efficient.
This is done by integrating the electronics with the Professional navigation system that comes standard in all ActiveHybrid 5 units. Having such a setup allows the electronics to access the data coming from the navigation system, giving it an early warning for changes in external conditions or driver inputs.
Upon analyzing the navigation data, the car can be alerted in advance so that all powertrain elements and the electronics can be regulated properly and allow it to use the least amount of energy possible.
Factors that may change the operating strategy of the powertrain include speed limits and the topography of the road. For instance, if the system detects that the vehicle is going downhill, the ActiveHybrid 5 can turn all of the battery's electrical system to give supplementary power because the battery will then be recharged when the vehicle goes downhill, without spending fuel.
When the car is on a longer downhill section, the electric motor's generator will kick in to help recharge the battery without wasting fuel and losing speed. This helps ensure that the battery is fully charged as much as possible when you are near your destination, giving a longer driving range on the last part of your driving.
You can check the different displays in the instrument cluster and the control display to monitor the operating status of various powertrain components. You have the energy recuperation and the energy flow display; you can also see how much boost is provided by the electric motor when the car is accelerating.
In some models, you have the iDrive operating system to help you keep track of various information such as the charge of the battery and the power sharing between the electric motor and the internal combustion engine. There is also a log detailing fuel consumption for the past 15 minutes, as well as the level of driving power from the electric motor.