Spy-Photo

The next-generation G30 BMW 5 Series may still be in development, but BMW M engineers are already hard at work on the car’s high-performance alter ego, the F90 BMW M5. The super sports sedan has been captured again by our European spy photographers on the icy landscape of the Swedish Lapland, possibly to test the added traction of the new optional all-wheel drive system.

Whereas the standard 5er was last spotted in near-production trim with complete head- and tail light assemblies, this M5 mule is still fitted with exposed prototype items. Still, one can still spot the usual M-specific details, including larger front air intakes, flared wheel arches to fit the wider track, massive cross-drilled disc brakes and quad exhausts.

Expect the final production car to gain even more unique touches to distance it from the cooking models, such as more aerodynamic side mirrors, a rear diffuser and lip spoiler as well as larger Air Breather vents aft of the front wheels – like those seen on the new M3 and M4.

Spy-Photo

Under the bonnet, the F90 should feature an evolution of the current car’s 4.4 litre twin-turbo V8, albeit breathed on for yet more power. The revised engine will reported put out as much as 626 hp, 26 more horses than even the hotted-up F10 M5 30 Jahre – itself up 40 hp over the standard car.

Expect the engine to be hooked up to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission (M DCT), sending power to the rear wheels via an Active M Differential – all carried over from the F10. As mentioned, the F90 is expected to gain an xDrive all-wheel drive system as an option, presumably to compete against the upcoming W213 Mercedes-AMG E 63 – rumoured to be 4Matic-only for the first time.

Adding even more performance is a crash diet – the F90, like the G30, is expected to share the new G11 7 Series‘ Carbon Core construction, utilising carbon fibre, magnesium and aluminium to shed around 100 kg off the portly F10 M5’s weight. Expect the new M5 to go on sale about a year after the G30 5 Series, the latter slated for an end-2016 introduction.