BMW Concept 5-series ActiveHybrid (2010)

Published: 28 February 2010

BMW's new 5-series will quickly spawn a petrol-electric hybrid – as this Geneva motor show 2010 concept car proves. It'll be the third BMW hybrid car in production, after the ActiveHybrid X6 and ActiveHybrid 7.

Like the part-electrified 7-series, the Concept 5-series ActiveHybrid uses a straight six petrol engine with twin turbos and an eight-speed auto with a hybrid module built in.

How clean is the new BMW Concept 5-series ActiveHybrid?

Munich says both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are improved by 10% and a zero-emissions EV mode is available, as the hybrid 5 is a full hybrid. Stop-start is standard, too.

The electric motor has a maximum output of 40kW and its drive is fed in by a clutch. A chunky battery pack slung in the boot provides the juice – and powers a remote controlled climate control system too (the car can be set to cool down while parked).

What are the innovations on the Concept 5-series ActiveHybrid?

So far, so conventional. However, the electric 5 is claimed to anticipate driving conditions ahead to decide the driving mode. The ECU monitors the driver's inputs to decide whether to select sporty or relaxed settings, and it even studies sat-nav info to decide whether to run on petrol or electricity.

For instance, Munich says this concept car can tell if the motorway ahead is about to run downhill – and the car can prepare in advance for regenerative battery recharging. This ability alone extends the cruising range on full EV mode by 30%, says BMW.

See the new BMW 5-series hybrid at the 2010 Geneva motor show. CAR Online will be reporting live from Palexpo on Tuesday 2 March 2010.

By Tim Pollard

Editorial director of CAR's digital publishing arm. Motoring news magnet

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