BMW continues to focus on luxury, refinement, fuel efficiency and high tech for most of its models somewhat to the detriment of handling agility. Case in point: the redesigned 2017 5 Series is the most luxurious version ever of BMW's midsized sedan. The new car is essentially the same size as the outgoing model, but marginally lighter and roomier.
Alerts
There are 4 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit.
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
NA
2001
NA
2002
2003
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
NA
2007
2008
2009
NA
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
2000
2001
2002
2003
2004
NA
2005
NA
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018
2019
Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS standard. Side air bags standard in front, available in rear from 2000. Head protection air bags and ESC standard from 2000.
Road Test

BMW continues to focus on luxury, refinement, fuel efficiency and high tech for most of its models somewhat to the detriment of handling agility. Case in point: the redesigned 2017 5 Series is the most luxurious version ever of BMW's midsized sedan. The new car is essentially the same size as the outgoing model, but marginally lighter and roomier. BMW's focus on reducing weight, adding technology, and minimizing cabin noise has resulted in a car that is remarkably satisfying but no longer among the sportiest choices. Instead, it's plush, quiet, finely crafted inside, frugal with fuel, and more user friendly than before. That makes it score among the top in its class in our road tests. With a few desirable option packages, our 530i xDrive rang in at $65,210, which is par for the course among its peers.

A sporty brand like BMW is not immune from the needs to improve fuel economy, whether it's because of government mandates or buyer desires. To achieve that, BMW uses a four-cylinder turbo engine in its mainstream 5 Series. Our tested 530i is propelled by a 2.0-liter, turbo four-cylinder engine, good for 248 horsepower. The 3.0-liter turbo six-cylinder in the 540i is punchier and pumps out 335 hp. Both engines are mated to a super slick eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is optional on almost all versions. There's also a 530e plug-in hybrid version which only commands a $200 premium over the 530i.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
AWD , Rear
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
sedan
Transmissions Available
  • 8-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2-liter 4 hybrid (248 hp)
  • 2-liter 4 turbo (248 hp)
  • 3-liter 6 turbo (335 hp)
  • 3-liter 6 turbodiesel (261 hp)
  • 4.4-liter V8 turbo (456 hp)
  • 4.4-liter V8 turbo (600 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2018 BMW 5 Series owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

Routine software updates

"Cutting engine/radio off without locking car"

Anonymous, PA (2018 BMW 5 Series 530i xDrive 3.0-L 6 Cyl turbo)
Software update fixes

"Engine check"

R K., OH (2018 BMW 5 Series 530i xDrive 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

"Check engine light came on for no reason many times, requiring that I take vehicle in for service. It took over a year before software fix resolved the problem."

Jeffrey Y., CA (2018 BMW 5 Series 530e 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Steering wheel controls

"The steering wheel moves upward upon exiting the vehicle and on occasion will not return to the driving position. In addition the electronic control does not work to move the wheel back down so you have to drive with the steering wheel up in the air. I consider this to be dangerous. BMW have not been able to fix the problem. i drove the car to the dealer with this intermittent problem 2 weeks ago to show them. They have still not called me to arrange to have it fixed. I think this is.a serious safety issue."

Allan C., ON (2018 BMW 5 Series 530e 2.0-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Automatic climate control

"Car has recurring and still unresolved climate control issues and cannot maintain cold air flow. BMW dealer has been supportive and professional, but unable to fix the issue. They are currently working with BMW specialists to diagnose the issue and have replaced several components thus far with no success. We are currently awaiting word from the dealer as to what the next move, but the car will now qualify for return under lemon law in our state and we plan to pursue this if this current fix is unsuccessful."

Anonymous, AL (2018 BMW 5 Series 540i 3.0-L 6 Cyl turbo)

"They placed an inferior climate control system in this car. When it is very hot out, you have to put auto temp down to 63 and manually control fan. Have not been able to assess heater."

Anonymous, FL (2018 BMW 5 Series 540i xDrive 4.4-L V8 turbo)

"The fan intensity controls have little to no effect. Most automatic climate control systems will set the fan to a high setting when you first start a hot car and then taper the fan setting down as the car cools. Most of the time, the BMW's fan settings start too low and then taper down to its lowest setting - nothing in between - even though the car interior is still uncomfortably hot. I have to manually set the temperature to the 60s (or use the max cool button which sets it to 60) for the fan to operate at a temperature appropriate speed."

Anonymous, FL (2018 BMW 5 Series 4.4-L V8 turbo)

"software glitch-reprogrammed at dealer"

Anonymous, DC (2018 BMW 5 Series 530i 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Gauges

"Entire center dashboard went dark/blank, including HUD display."

Anonymous, WA (2018 BMW 5 Series 530e 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)
Keyless entry

"Inconsistent operation - sometimes it works and other times does not."

Anonymous, VA (2018 BMW 5 Series 530e 2.0-L 4 Cyl hybrid)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Other/unsure

"Alarm showed passenger restraint system was malfunctioning. Had to replace entire wiring harness because of wire short. Assume it was a manufacturing issue because the dealership said they had received a warning from BMW."

Anonymous, NC (2018 BMW 5 Series 540i 3.0-L 6 Cyl turbo)

"Worked fine for 20,000 miles and has failed recently. Dealer having trouble fixing it despite 3 tries."

Anonymous, VA (2018 BMW 5 Series 540i 3.0-L 6 Cyl turbo)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Doors or sliding doors

"Front passenger door soft-close mechanism failed such that door would not properly close."

Anonymous, TX (2018 BMW 5 Series 530i 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"There are some really cheep plastics in this car for the price level. Design of the seat belts means the passenger side rattles on the plastic when the seat is not occupied. Car uses antifreeze all the time it’s not leaking out but it’s going somewhere"

Bobby W., KS (2018 BMW 5 Series 540i xDrive 3.0-L 6 Cyl turbo)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"Emission control sensor under front of car had to be replaced - caused dash warning light. Seemed more electrical related than performance related."

Anonymous, TX (2018 BMW 5 Series 530i 2.0-L 4 Cyl turbo)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Radiator

"Computer problem was resolved by the dealership"

Anonymous, FL (2018 BMW 5 Series 540i xDrive 3.0-L 6 Cyl turbo)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

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