A regular Black Panel display

BMW updates the production specs of their cars twice a year – and for the 07/12 production update they have something nice in plan for whoever’s ordering the F10 5-Series – a new optional Enhanced Black Panel which features a completely reconfigurable instrument panel on the Enhanced Black Panel’s 10.25 inch display.

BMW’s new Enhanced Black Panel display

The arrangement of the information is familiar to those who drive the current range of BMWs – two chrome rings on the black surface, flanked by a fuel level and temperature displays. The temperature and fuel displays remain visible when the ignition is turned off, but the rest of the display blacks out.

Something interesting happens when you switch to certain drive modes – as you can see above, ECO PRO mode brings on a blue theme which replaces the RPM meter with a huge fuel economy meter – essentially a giant version of the small meter that’s usually positioned below the RPM meter.

Switch to Sport mode and the display turns red, with the the speedometer turning digital and the RPM meter having a huge gear indicator.

The F10 is currently offered with two different instrument panels in Malaysia – the 520d and 520i come with a lower end Black Panel cluster which only has a color display in the bottom right section. The 528i and 535i gets the full Black Panel display – the kind that goes blank when you turn the ignition off. Given that we don’t have the luxury of picking and choosing options when it comes to ordering cars in Malaysia, chances of this optional feature appearing in cars sold by BMW Malaysia would depend entirely on them.