POWr Multi Slider

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Matchbox BMW M5 Police and 5-series



This year Matchbox finally makes a typical BMW that is not a motorcycle or a limited run sports car, yet still it's a M-badged car so yea it's still a sporty BMW but one that can also haul passengers or patrolmen.  Interestingly enough this is not the first time Matchbox has made the 5-series; in fact, Matchbox has made a stock 5-series two decades ago for a limited time.




Click Here for Photo Gallery


The 5-series was introduced in 1972 as the originally largest sedan in the BMW line that was the profit maker from high-end executives to commercial taxi's and emergency vehicles for Germany.  When the 7-series was introduced later on the 5-series became the mid-size model in the BMW line yet still the moneymaker in the line from a high-end perspective.  The 5-series also takes some cues from the 3-series in, until this recent-generation 5-series model, turning the large sedan into a sports car for the ultimate driving machine manufacturer.  In 1984 the M5 was introduced as the world's sportiest and fastest sedan, and still continues today despite stronger competition.  The third-generation 5-series carried-over similar styling from the previous-generation but incorporates smoother front and rear bumpers from the 3-series and L-shaped rear taillights.  The engine is the 2.5L DOHC I-6 that produced 192 hp. through a 5-speed manual and four-wheel multilink suspension all-around.  After two generations of massive styling upgrades, both good and bad, the current-generation 5-series goes for a smoother, contemporary look that combined with its larger size can be easily confused with the larger 7-series.  Indeed the new 5-series is no more the larger 3-series that it used to be, not to mention the numerous spin-off models from the GT to the 6-series coupe, convertible, coupe-like sedan, and X5 and X6 SAV's.  Still, the M5 is the beast to get despite the drop in cylinder count from 10 to 8, but now it's a twin-turbocharged 4.4L DOHC V8 with the turbo's in the V of the engine, producing 560 hp. and 500 Ib-ft. of torque through the standard 6-speed manual or the quicker 7-speed dual clutch automated manual transmission.




Click Here for Photo Gallery


The original Matchbox 5-series was only offered in black and was a rather late entry in the last Matchbox/Lesney/Universal-era with its metal base and opening doors, which would explain the brief run.  The black with tan interior is a slick package and the 8-dot wheels have a working suspension that is firm and not too 'bouncy'.  The front has silver on the quad headlights, the twin kidney grille, and the lower bumper with Euro plate cutout, lower scoops and foglights.  The sides are a clean and simple profile with exterior mirrors and that offenheiser (sic) kink at the D-pillars.  The rear has the L-shaped taillights in a ribbed format and a single, dual-tipped exhaust that is barely visible.  Underneath the black metal base shows off the exhaust and some of the drivetrain components, while opening the doors reveals the interior with the simple dashboard (waaay before I-drive!), right-hand drive setup, and supportive seats front and rear with plenty of room here and in the trunk.  Finally, the size of this car is wider than the new M5, yet both have the same wheelbase and vehicle length.




Click Here for Photo Gallery


The new M5 is more than just an M5, it's an M5 Police package that gives some more aggressive enhancements to the bland 5-series exterior, and it was appropriate that Matchbox started the first release in silver with green Police logo's to represent the special M5 police made by BMW for the German police.  The front has rounder headlights (without any detailing) housings where the halo lights inside now represent the round lenses of the old 5-series, twin kidney grille, much smoother bumper surface with larger M5 scoops to flow needed air to the numerous intercoolers behind the front bumper.  The sides are, again, flat and plain with the D-pillar kink, yet is livlied with the green police decals and roof-mounted Euro police lights. (if you need a stock M5 the cutout for the lights can double as the sunroof)  The rear has the L-shaped taillights with additional lights on the rear bumper, rear spoiler shaped into the trunklid, and those quad exhaust tips mean business!  Oh, and don't forget the awesome dark gray 5-spoke wheels to finish off the sporty M-look.



Click Here for Photo Gallery


The base shows less than before thanks to today's modern flush undercarriages, save for the exhaust pipe detailing.  The interior is much more bland, yet still retains the roomy 5-passenger seating and trunk of the actual car (and the original 5-series).  The dashboard lacks detailing and for a reason: The center has a smooth flush look for the wide I-Drive screen, radio and HVAC controls below, small shifter with I-drive knob just below and to the side.  The new 3-spoke banjo wheel looks and feels much better than the thicker unit of the first two years of this M5 generation.  The gauges are still analog despite a digital center and the MPG gauge has been replaced by a digital EfficientDynamics gauge that makes you think you're running a hybrid when in reality you're running a 500 hp police car!  I did some quick performance runs with both and was surprised at how much both of these cars have the same driving dynamics despite the new M5 having more horsepower (and weight) and the old BMW low on power and having a wide girth, especially during the handling tests.


Click Here for Photo Gallery


After years of America-based police vehicles it's nice to see a return of an Euro-based police car for the European markets, a 5-series, and a 5-series that improves on the bland style with the M5 package.

No comments:

Post a Comment