Here we see the super sedan in its natural habitat – at the Nürburgring.

While we don’t need a crystal ball to broadly figure out what the new M5 is going to look like, we are still happy BMW has decided to remove some of the disguise during the latest round of testing on the challenging Green Hell. The high-performance midsize sedan is still wearing a lot of makeup, but even so we get the chance to check out the aggressive front bumper with those beefy air vents as well as the bulging wheel arches and the new M side mirror caps.

 

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An M6 Coupe-derived carbon fibre roof is hiding underneath that psychedelic camo while at the back a discreet spoiler has been glued onto the trunk lid. Bigger alloy wheels matched by upgraded brakes are also on the menu, as are the quad exhaust tips flanking what looks like a diffuser. The prototype also rides substantially lower than the regular 5 Series models and overall it looks a tad bit more menacing than the temporary range topper, the M550i xDrive we had the pleasure of reviewing earlier this month.

Speaking of which, the new-gen M5 is expected to use an evolution of the same biturbo 4.4-litre V8 engine developing in excess of 600 horsepower according to the latest intel. For the first time ever, all that M power will be channeled to an xDrive setup, but there will still be a way to punish the rear tires and make the M5 tail-happy. We’re talking about a rumored driver-selectable mode enabling the super sedan to become entirely RWD.

2018 BMW M5 spy photo
2018 BMW M5 spy photo

Responsible for putting all that power onto the road will be an eight-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission helping the M5 hit 100 kilometres per hour(62 miles per hour) from a standstill in less than 3.6 seconds. That might not sound overly impressive considering the Mercedes-AMG E63 S Sedan completes the task in 3.4s, but BMW will likely respond to that later on with a Competition Package.

Meanwhile, the standard M5 should bow before the end of the year and we might see it in the metal as early as September at the Frankfurt Motor Show. It’s too soon to talk about pricing, but it goes without saying you’ll have to pay a considerable premium over the M550i xDrive available in Canada for $80,900.

If you're having a hard time waiting for the new range topper, there's always the Alpina B5 Bi-Turbo and you can get it in a wagon flavour serving as a substitute for the M5 Touring that BMW isn't willing to bring back.

 

Photos: Automedia, CarPix

 

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