BMW 528i Touring in the test

Hans-Dieter Seufert
BMW 528i Touring put to the test
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D he discussion about what progress now means and what not should not be broken off the fence at this point. The fact is, however: The tailgate of the BMW 528i Touring already contains more technology than some small cars from earlier years.

The station wagon therefore keeps asking its owner: How can I open myself up to you? Is it enough if only the rear window swings up? Or should it be the entire flap? If so, how? Via remote control, a short pull on the handle or even with a more or less elegant foot movement? Whichever option wins, they all work perfectly. Only with the standard, separately opening rear window of the BMW 528i Touring, the user cannot avoid dirty fingers, as a motorized locking mechanism would probably be a bit too much progress.

BMW 528i Touring with limited space

Even without, the lavishly equipped test car weighs just under 1.9 tonnes, despite the supposedly light four-cylinder engine. Since the tailgate is now open anyway, the BMW 528i Touring can immediately show how much vicious it is. The loading compartment swallows up to 1,670 liters; if it is limited by the rear seat and window edge, there are still 560 liters. If the combi body is not only bought for aesthetic reasons, here you go: level control, three-part rear seat backrest as well as load compartment blinds and dividing net are part of the standard equipment - perfect. Incidentally, the roller blind opens and closes automatically, and a stainless steel strip on the low loading sill also automatically prevents scratches from luggage.

So far, so practical - was the old Kombi master Mercedes used as a model? Perhaps. Some things the BMW 528i Touring can even do better (keyword: three-part rear seat), others not quite as well. The roof rails have a surcharge, larger piece goods get stuck on the voluminous flap hinges, and the load volume and payload are lower. Also tight: the amount of space on the comfortable back seat, which is somewhat surprising given its length of 4.91 meters. To speak of airy space is measured at the latest when it is divided by four people who have grown over 1.85 meters. The expansive comfort seats also cost a few millimeters of knee room - and an impressive 4,270 euros extra, since BMW only covers them in leather.

528i only with four cylinders

Nevertheless: If the BMW 528i Touring is supposed to eat up many kilometers, this option is almost a must. Why? Support it with the countless adjustment options almost every back is perfect. With this relaxed, it is easy for the driver to concentrate on all other functions. For example, which assistance system should keep watch, which functions the head-up display projects into the windshield, which medium plays which music and in which which mode the BMW 5 Series Touring should run.

With the rocker button, which is called Driving Experience Control in the best marketing German, the selection extends to Eco Pro, Comfort, Comfort Plus, Sport and Sport Plus -, steering, transmission and ESP characteristics. Regardless of all the progress, however, there are two modes for the engine: off and on. At least when stationary, there is hardly any difference acoustically n, because BMW apparently packs the two-liter unit well in a few pounds of insulation material. And so this small-volume upstart is sending the great straight six-cylinder into retirement? At least the 350 Nm maximum torque, which is already available at 1,250 revolutions, has a shameful cylinder head. Accordingly, the direct injection pushes the heavy BMW 528i Touring powerfully and can be blown the turbo march with up to 1.3 bar.

And while the naturally aspirated group wants to be happy that it is about to run out of breath goes out, the BMW 528i Touring turns completely unimpressed beyond the 5,000 rpm mark and only ceases to operate beyond 6,000 rpm. The result: seven seconds to sprint from zero to 100 km /h. Not bad? Yes, only four tenths slower than the factory specification. In addition, the turbo engine almost sounds as if it is being injected with low-fat curd cheese instead of premium gasoline. In the Z4, it proves that the four-cylinder can bass more comfortably and fuller at high engine speeds.

The four-cylinder sips a lot of fuel

The gently shifting eight-speed automatic of the BMW 528i Touring cannot be criticized, except perhaps that it works a bit rough when the oil is cold. If he wanted, the driver could choose the gears himself using the optional, nicely designed shift paddles. But the transmission works fine on its own. Does it also help you save? BMW specifies a standard consumption of 6.8 L /100 km, three tenths less than with a manual transmission.

In fact, the BMW 528i Touring achieved a remarkable 6.9 liters on the economical auto motor und sport standard lap /100 km. However, the test consumption leveled off at 11.3 L /100 km, which is due to the fact that the engine delivers the fuel jug by jug to ex when driving quickly. Above 130 km /h, even the clever one remainsEco-Pro mode has no effect, including it aroused the ambition of most drivers to collect range kilometers. So the progress of the drive in everyday life is limited to better torque.

Upgraded chassis is convincing

It looks different the chassis of the BMW 5 Series. Of course, the test car pulled out all the optional stops, from adaptive dampers to active all-wheel steering. The latter suggests sensational agility with a sharp response, but the main reason for the dynamic handling is likely to be the excellently tuned adaptive chassis. It also enables pleasant suspension comfort, even though the BMW 528i Touring was tested on modest 17-inch wheels. In this configuration, the comfort mode proves to be the best choice, even if the driver spontaneously decides to swiftly swerve through combinations of bends instead of simply driving through them. The BMW 5 Series Touring thus also follows the trend of wanting to please everyone - which it succeeds in doing. The heavy weight: Progress still has a bit to do here.

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