With photos of the new 2012 BMW M5 being leaked on various websites around the world, BMW has taken the decision to release these official photos of the car. The new M5 was apparently scheduled to make its public debut next week at the BMW M Festival ahead of the Nürburgring 24 Hour race.
Although the photos don’t show a great deal of detail, the new car is little changed from the concept BMW showed at the 2011 Shanghai Auto Show last April. This means the car is very understated, with an M3-style front spoiler, side skirts and a trunk spoiler. It also gets the M vents in the front fenders, quad tailpipes and 20” five-spoke wheels.
BMW officials have confirmed to us that the engine will be a twin-turbo V8. But while previous M5s have all had M-specific engines, this car is rumored to be getting a 550hp 4.4-liter V8, which it will share with the BMW X6M and X5M. As a result, it could also be available with an automatic transmission, although the double-clutch DCT seems more likely. US customers prompted the introduction of a manual transmission on the previous M5, but no indication is given about whether this will remain on the new car.
The new M5 should be in European showrooms later this year and in the US the following Spring. We’ll bring you further updates when the information is officially released.