2021 BMW 545e xDrive has been revealed. Why? With a ten-year plan for sustainability, the BMW Group is underscoring its commitment to the goals of the Paris climate agreement, the main focus being on the expansion of electric mobility. More than 500,000 electrified vehicles were sold by the end of 2019 and this figure will most likely rise to over 1 million by the end of 2021. The BMW 5 Series makes a substantial contribution towards achieving both past and future goals. With almost 50,000 units, BMW 5 Series plug-in hybrid models were the most successful electrified models in the BMW Group’s portfolio worldwide in 2019.
With an increase from two to five models featuring innovative plug-in hybrid drive by November 2020, the new BMW 5 Series offers the largest range of PHEVs within one BMW Group model series. The latest generation of BMW eDrive technology in conjunction with a four-cylinder petrol engine powers the BMW 530e plug-in hybrid models. July 2020 saw the launch of the new BMW 530e Sedan and the new BMW 530e xDrive Sedan. In November 2020, the new BMW 530e Touring and the new BMW 530e xDrive Touring will be launched.
The new 2021 BMW 545e xDrive Sedan features a synchronous electric motor delivering a maximum power output of 80 kW/109 hp, which is combined with an efficient straight six-cylinder petrol engine with BMW TwinPower Turbo Technology and 210 kW/286 hp, together generating an overall system output of 290 kW/394 hp. Power is distributed as required to all four wheels via an 8-speed Steptronic transmission and intelligent BMW xDrive four-wheel drive. Maximum system torque is 600 Nm and top speed is reached at 250 km/h, whilst a speed of 140 km/h is possible in purely electric operation. From a standstill, the new 2021 BMW 545e xDrive accelerates to a speed of 100 km/h in just 4.7 seconds*. Thus, the 2021 BMW 545e xDrive clearly excels as the most dynamic of all BMW six-cylinder plug-in hybrids.
Thanks to intelligently controlled interaction between both drive systems, the new BMW 545e xDrive combines the best of two worlds. It facilitates not only purely electric driving in urban traffic and efficient commuting between home and the workplace, but also excels through dynamic performance and comfortable long-distance travel. With a purely electric range of 54–57 kilometres* and an average fuel consumption of 2.4–2.1 litres/100 km*, the new BMW 545e xDrive combines brand-typical driving dynamics and a high level of long-distance ride comfort with extremely efficient use of resources.
The latest plug-in hybrid model of the BMW 5 Series is fitted with a 400V lithium-ion battery which is positioned under the rear seat in order to save space. With a luggage volume of 410 litres, the transport capacity of the BMW 545e xDrive is only slightly smaller than of those model variants which are fitted with a conventional engine.
Different driving modes for maximum efficiency in accordance with the relevant driving style and situation. In order to make optimum use of the combination of the straight six-cylinder engine featuring ultra-smooth running characteristics and eDrive technology in all driving situations, the BMW 545e xDrive supports the driver in numerous ways in terms of energy management. Various driving modes, some of which can be individualised in their operation, are simply selected by pressing the corresponding button on the centre console.
The HYBRID mode is the default setting, which ensures a balanced set-up and an intelligent interaction between combustion engine and electric motor. It is also possible to select ELECTRIC mode as the standard setting via the iDrive menu. In HYBRID mode, the electric motor is predominantly used. The combustion engine only kicks in at higher speeds or under intensive load conditions. Since the system is linked to the navigation system, the interaction between combustion engine and electric motor can be adapted more precisely to the route profile, topography and other driving situations in an anticipatory manner. The electric range is increased by recuperation in overrun and braking phases. The energy supply saved in this way can then be used specifically for locally emission-free driving through urban areas and the arrival at the defined destination.
By pressing the HYBRID button twice, an efficiency-optimised version of this operating mode (HYBRID ECO PRO) is activated.The coasting function on the overrun, among other things, contributes to a further reduction in consumption. The navigation and sensor data-supported control system also optimises the effectiveness of braking energy recovery. When approaching a junction or a vehicle driving ahead, for example, infinitely adaptive recuperation can be put to particularly intensive use for the purpose of deceleration.
In SPORT mode, the electric motor supports the straight six-cylinder petrol engine when the overall system output of 290 kW/394 hp is fully needed. The set-up is designed for dynamic performance, and the gearshift program is sporty. The ELECTRIC mode, on the other hand, enables locally purely emission-free driving up to 57 kilometres* and up to 140 km/h.
The new “ready to drive sound” produced by the 2021 BMW 545e xDrive is the result of the collaboration with composer Hans Zimmer and is designed to trigger joyful anticipation of the electric drive when the driver enters the vehicle and presses the Start/Stop button. A distinctive sound created especially for electrified BMW models is used for the purpose of acoustic pedestrian protection, emitted via a speaker system. The sound design in the low speed range of up to 30 km/h radiates a vibrant acoustic presence, though without impairing the acoustic comfort of vehicle occupants.
Likewise, via the vehicle audio system, “Active Sound Design” provides for an authentic and, in the SPORT mode of the Driving Experience Control Switch, for a particularly intense and pronounced sound. Electric mobility meets digitalisation: Digital services for the plug-in hybrid models of the BMW 5 Series.
The BMW Group also offers innovative digital services that actively contribute towards increasing the attractiveness of electric driving even further.
The BMW eDrive Zone service facilitates the automatic switching over of the drive system to purely electric mode when entering an urban low-emission zone and similar inner-city areas. In addition, local emission-free driving with a BMW plug-in hybrid model is rewarded through the globally unique loyalty programme BMW Points. Apart from filling stations, the navigation system also displays public charging points. When selecting a charging station, the driver is also provided with a forecast on its occupation status as well as recommendations for nearby restaurants or cafés. Moreover, BMW enables BMW Charging customers to reserve an enabled charging station for a limited period of time.
Furthermore, other products from BMW Charging also offer the possibility of comfortable charging at home and when out and about. These also comprise various versions of the Wallbox, including installation service, individual offers for the purchase of electricity and access to the world’s largest network of public charging stations comprising more than 155,000 charging points in Europe alone.
Preconditioning of the interior by means of auxiliary heating and air conditioning ensures optimised comfort during any season. If the preconditioning system is activated during the charging process after defining a specific departure time, the system also guarantees the full electric range in drive mode. The system is controlled either from inside the vehicle or conveniently via the My BMW app.