2009 BMW 5-Series Wagon Performance
This performance review was written when the 2009 BMW 5-Series Wagon was new.
Critics agree that the BMW 5-Series wagon provides plenty of power and excellent handling dynamics.
- "The ... BMW 5 Series is an extremely balanced machine that can handle aggressive driving maneuvers on winding back roads as well as it dispatches weekday commutes on crumbling expressways." -- Edmunds
Acceleration and Power
Auto writers appreciate the '09 535i xDrive Sports Wagon's robust powertrain. It features a turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine that produces 300-horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 300 pound-feet of torque at 1,400 to 5,000 rpm. While a six-speed manual transmission is standard, a STEPTRONIC automatic is optional. According to the EPA, the 5-Series wagon nets a city/highway fuel economy of 16/23 mpg with the manual transmission and 16/24 with the automatic.
- "[T]he 5 Series' new twin-turbo six-cylinder is the bread and butter of the model's powertrain lineup." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "The 3-lieter, twin-turbo, inline 6 guarantees plenty of zip without lag when leaving the light or pulling out to pass. The guts of a sedan, though not the glitter." -- Chicago Tribune
- "Once engaged, the six-speed shifts smoothly but prematurely in the name of fuel economy." -- Car and Driver
- "Manual gearbox provides smooth action." -- Consumer Guide
Handling and Braking
Test drivers report that the BMW 5-Series wagon handles marvelously. Standard features aiding the wagon's performance include Dynamic Stability Control, Brake Fade Compensation, Brake Drying and Dynamic Traction Control.
- "Load haulers seldom handle this well or are this much fun to drive." -- Car and Driver
- "The driving experience hasn't changed much, as the 5 Series still has sharper reflexes and more road feel than any other car in its class." -- Edmunds
- "[T]he Active Suspension behaved transparently (and brilliantly), enabling a smooth ride even over choppy pavement and providing unimaginably tenacious grip in sharp corners." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Braking strong, stable, straight." -- Consumer Guide
Standard on the 5-Series wagon is BMW's xDrive all-wheel drive system, which leaves test drivers assured in inclement weather.
- "XDrive can reduce drive to the front tires so more of their available grip can be devoted to cornering while increasing drive and reducing lateral stick at the rear, helping the car to rotate without brake intervention." -- Motor Trend