BMW 5 Series Gearbox
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BMW 5 Series Gearboxes
The M5 V10 is one of the all time greats it is capable of revving to 8,250rpm, it sounds sensational, barking and howling at the top end and reacting instantly to throttle inputs. Acceleration is immense, but the sequential gearbox, while a technological masterpiece, is still not perfect and has one ratio too many. The auto mode is poor, yet drivers will appreciate the launch control which helps blast the M5 to 60mph in 4.6 seconds!
Currently buyers can only choose colour and trim, for there’s just a single saloon body style, mated to a seven speed paddle shift semi auto gearbox. There are rumours that an estate model will arrive, as well as a version with a manual gearbox.
The M5 is as understated inside as it is from the outside. You have to look carefully to notice the changes, iDrive – are flawed. Several buttons around the gearlever alter the driving experience. You can firm up the three stage electronic dampers, disengage the stability system, alter the engine mapping to deliver 507bhp rather than 400bhp, and choose from 11 gearbox settings. Luckily, there is a shortcut through this complexity! The M button on the steering wheel can be programmed to your preferred set-up. Elsewhere, dials are clear but watch the fuel gauge, a 70 litre tank and 19mpg economy means frequent fill-ups. Servicing will be expensive and insurance prohibitive, while expensive executive super saloons traditionally depreciate heavily.
The M5’s 7 speed SMG Drive logic system features gear change keys on the steering wheel and a selection lever on the centre console. Six manual and five automated programmes offer perfect gear changing for every driving style: extremely fast and without having to reduce speed. Maximum acceleration comes courtesy of Launch Control: it ensures that speed is maintained across the entire range of gear changes.
What is a 7 speed SMG Drive logic
Gearshifts are initiated using the steering-wheel mounted paddle or the gear selection lever in the central console. Within milliseconds, the electro-hydraulic system shifts to the selected gear. The system also prevents over-revving: accidental gear shifts are automatically repressed.
When starting off, the Launch Control feature ensures that the de-clutch timing and engine speed are perfectly synchronised for optimum acceleration. When downshifting while driving, the transmission system automatically increases engine speed briefly between gears, ensuring extremely smooth transitions.
Rear-axle slip recognition, a mountain and slope assistant and a winter driving programme all enhance driving comfort and active safety, especially on loose or slippery road surfaces.
The Drive logic control switch on the gear selector lever lets you change the gearshift character to suit your personal style. Six manual and five automatic gearshift programmes are available. In the “S” manual mode, LED shift lights indicate the optimum moment for each gearshift. In automatic mode, SMG up shifts and downshifts according to the selected programme, so you can fully concentrate on your steering, speed and driving pleasure.
Future BMW gearboxes
All-new 5 Series is among the BMW models to offer the ZF 8HP transmission, which is claimed to be as efficient as a dual-clutch gearbox. The current generation of BMWs available right now with this technology, namely the 120d and Mini Cooper D – are only paired to a six-speed manual transmission. However, the eight-speeder will not spell the end of the dual-clutch gearbox known as DKG. Instead, both are expected to co-exist to give BMW customers the best possible gearbox applications.
The ZF 8HP may step in instead as the replacement for the existing models’ outmoded SMG II gearbox, although a second-generation DKG with greater torque capabilities has also been mooted. According to BMW’S head of development for this gearbox, the eight speed automatic is at the very least in the same performance and efficiency class as the DKG. Despite the extra ratios, BMW engineers have decreased the number of mechanical and structural components compared to the old six-speed ZF gearbox, for a weight saving of around 2.5kg.
BMW considered upping the forward ratio count to 10 speeds before rejecting the proposition, while a CVT continuously variable transmission was also contemplated for a time before also being discarded. However, the resulting weight and bulk increases that were necessary with the extra hardware required for the planetary gears not only cancelled out the potential gains of having a greater spread of gear ratios, but also actually brought in inefficiencies not existent in the eight-speed transmission.
BMW looked at nine or 10 speed automatics but these were rejected because they required more processes fitted to them which significantly reduced their efficiencies. Other manufacturers will also be able to use the ZF 8HP gearbox soon, although there are BMW specific elements to the transmission that will not be made available for others.
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We are the UK’s largest virtual gearbox warehouse offering amazing 80% off for our customers on all parts. Find the right BMW 5 Series Gearbox part you need right here, in minutes. We only work with specialist gearboxes suppliers; their unrivalled knowledge ensures that you get the right parts – first time! All our BMW 5 Series Gearboxes are fully tested prior to dispatch and include a warranty; this is a testament to the quality of parts we deliver.
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