Make / Model Search

Car reviews - BMW - 5 Series - 520d sedan

Launch Story

11 Dec 2007

ECHOING the X3 SUV range, BMW Australia has added a new entry-level diesel model to the 5 Series saloon line-up.

Not only is the new 520d the cheapest 5 Series available at $79,900 – coming in $5000 below the similarly-equipped 523i – but it is some $35,000 less than the only diesel model previously available, the six-cylinder 530d.

Although BMW diesel sales have stabilised in 2007 at about the same rate as 2006 – which was double the previous couple of years – sales of the 530d have dropped to about half what they were last year when the model was fresh, so the company will be expecting the 520d to make up lost ground.

Sharing its all-alloy turbo-diesel engine with the 120d and 320d as well as the new X3 2.0d, the new entry-level 5 Series produces 125kW of power at 4000rpm and 340Nm of torque from 1750 to 4000rpm.

With a standard six-speed Steptronic automatic transmission, the 520d accelerates from rest to 100km/h in 8.6 seconds – 1.5 seconds slower than the bigger-engined 530d.

However, it uses only 6.1 litres of fuel per 100km compared with the 530d’s official figure of 7.5L/100km.

Compared with the 140kW/230Nm 2.5-litre petrol-engined 523i, the 520d not only costs $5000 less, but it accelerates to 100km/h half a second faster, uses only two-thirds of the fuel and produces about 10 per cent fewer CO2 emissions.

Apart from the engine, the only difference between the two models is the lack of active steering on the 520d, otherwise the features and specifications are the same.

That means standard stability control, ABS brakes, eight airbags, 16-inch star spoke alloy wheels (without run-flat tyres), high-gloss wood interior trim, Dakota leather upholstery, a 6.5-inch colour control display monitor, Bluetooth phone preparation, in-dash CD player and CD changer in the glovebox, USB audio interface, dual automatic climate control, automatic interior mirror, multi-function leather steering wheel, on-board iDrive computer with outside temperature display and power adjustment for front-seat backrest angle and height.

At the same time as introducing the new 520d, BMW Australia has also introduced two new technologies to the 5 Series range – variable light distribution and crash-activated headrests.

Variable light distribution will be optional on 5 Series, but the crash-activated headrests, which are a development of the existing active head restraints, are now standard on all 6 Series, 5 Series, X5 and X3 models.

In the event of a rear-end impact, the pyro-activated headrests almost instantly move forward by up to 60mm and upwards by up to 40mm to reduce the gap to the occupant’s head and therefore reduce the effect of whiplash.

Variable light distribution technology varies the shape of the illumination cast by the headlamps according to driving conditions.

Having made adaptive headlights (which turn with the steering) standard with the introduction of the E60 5 Series in 2003, followed by optional automatic high beam dipping in 2005, this is BMW’s latest development in enhanced lighting.

Dependent on road speed, the variable light distribution system automatically enlarges the driver’s field of visibility by broadening the light beam, or the “footprint” of light.

In a typical city night-time driving situation at speeds below 50 km/h, the system ensures a broader distribution of light making it easier to recognise objects on the oncoming side of the road.

The foglights activate automatically at speeds of up to 70km/h to generate a broader light distribution and brighten up the area close to the car.

At higher speeds, the field of vision is extended by giving the light beam a longer range, and offering greater illumination on the far side of the road.

Click to share

Click below to follow us on
Facebook  Twitter  Instagram

GoAuto can help you buy a new 5 Series

Customer Terms and Conditions – New Car Lead enquires


This is an agreement between GoAutoMedia Pty Limited ACN 094 732 457 of PO Box 18, Beach Road, Sandringham, VIC, 3191 (“we/us”), the owner and operator of the GoAuto.com.au website (“the website”) and the person wanting GoAuto.com.au to provide them with a lead for the purchase of a new car (“you”).

By completing a New Car Lead Enquiry, you agree to the terms and conditions and disclaimers and acknowledge the policies set out below.

Terms and Conditions

  • In order for us to effect a lead you must you must complete a New Car Lead Enquiry (“Enquiry”).
  • We will call you as soon as possible after you complete the Enquiry and certainly no later than the next business day. When we call, we will discuss with you your new car requirements.
  • You consent to our passing on the Enquiry and your requirements to an appropriate authorised motor car dealer as a lead.
  • We will contact you again in approximately eight days following your initial enquiry to check on the progress of the Enquiry.
  • While we will provide the dealer with the Enquiry and details of your new car requirements, we take no responsibility for what happens after passing on that material as a lead.
  • You acknowledge that we are a new car information service providing new car editorial information, pictures and prices to our customers as a guide only. Any new car prices published on the website are the manufacturers’ recommended retail prices and do not include delivery charges and on-road costs. Any authorized motor car dealer to which we pass on your Enquiry as a lead will provide you with full details of the price at which the vehicle will be sold to you.
  • You acknowledge that we do not sell motor vehicles. Any sale of a new car to you by a dealer after we have passed on your Enquiry to that dealer as a lead, is a sale by that dealer not by us.

Privacy Policy– New Car Lead Enquires

  • We take privacy very seriously. We understand that you will only complete an Enquiry if you can trust us to protect your personal information and use it appropriately. Our policy is to ensure that the personal information collected when you make an Enquiry is only used for the purposes of connecting you with an authorised motor car dealer.
  • We do not on-sell information collected from you or any other customer.
  • From time to time, we may email you with information or promotions that may be relevant for car buyers. You will continue to receive communications from us unless you tell us that you do not want to receive any advertising or promotional information in the future by unsubscribing from these communications.
* Denotes required field
** Australian inquiries only

5 Series pricing

Motor industry news

GoAutoNews is Australia’s number one automotive industry journal covering the latest news, future and new model releases, market trends, industry personnel movements, and international events.

Catch up on all of the latest industry news with this week's edition of GoAutoNews
Click here