For The BMW 5 Series 520d SE is a refined, comfortable and spacious – and considerably more economical to run than its direct competition.

Against Ride is suspect without the active ride and integral active steering options. Larger wheels than standard also impinge.

BMW 5 Series Touring

What Car? says

5 out of 5 stars

The BMW 5 Series 520d SE is an extremely good car, even in its standard form, but you have to pick the right dynamic chassis options to turn it into a great one.

What Car? readers say


Key facts

8.1 secs
Top speed
142 mph
Average mpg
Tank range
946 miles
See all running costs

View the whole BMW 5 Series Touring range

Read in full

The full BMW 5 Series review

Buyer's notes

Target Price team says:

You buy a BMW estate as much for the way it drives as for its load-lugging abilities, which means you may want to explore the dynamic chassis options. You can add Variable Damper Control to four-cylinder models and Adaptive Drive to six-cylinder ones, and we strongly recommend that you do. These options transform the car, making the ride more cosseting and the handling sharper. Avoid the optional Active Steering four-wheel steering, though.

Whichever options you go for, you’ll have no problem lumping heavy loads because all Tourings come with self-levelling rear suspension.

Sure, the more powerful versions are fast, but there’s no need to punish yourself at the pumps when the 520d will deliver strong performance and impressive real-world economy. Its low CO2 output makes it a comparatively cheap company car, too.

Reader test team says:

BMW 5 Series Touring 520d M Sport 5dr

Coming from a E91 BMW 320D touring this is a serious upgrade I think. I almost bought the 518d but I'm happy I didn't. The 520d in combination with…

Tom Pauwels

4 out of 5 stars

BMW 5 Series Touring 520d SE 5dr

Disappointment. This replaced my Volvo S60. I got a 520d F11 Auto Touring with lots of extras. Cost from Approve used was £19k. The stereo upgraded…


2 out of 5 stars

BMW 5 Series Touring 520d Luxury 5dr

Lovely car to drive, well equipped but I hate the runflat tyres. They do nothing for the ride quality. The fuel economy is nowhere near the advertised…

Dave boulder

4 out of 5 stars

BMW 5 Series Touring 520i M Sport 5dr

Got this car for 4 months now. Went for the petrol because i dont do alot of miles. I must say it has been outstanding so far. The petrol engine is…

len chan

4 out of 5 stars
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