The BMW 520d Efficient Dynamics might have missed out on the Green Executive Car gong - pipped, it must be said, by its smaller brother, the 320d ED - but it’s still a comfortable runner-up.
The figures delivered by the 520d ED are pretty astonishing. Its 2.0-litre turbodiesel engine produces 181bhp, but a list of small efficiency improvements, and taller gear ratios, help it to deliver a remarkable Government fuel economy figure of 62.8mpg (giving it a theoretical range of 967 miles), and just 119g/km of CO2 emissions.
Better still, the big Beemer does a decent job of getting close to its official figure; our own True MPG analysis of the car, calculated on British roads and in a mix of urban and motorway traffic, comes out at a very respectable 54.5mpg.
Nor, we’re pleased to say, has this efficiency been achieved at the expense of driveability. Sure, the gear ratios are a little taller, but the engine has more than enough low-down flexibility to overcome them; performance remains strong. So does refinement; sit at motorway speeds and you’d struggle to tell the difference between the leaner 520d and the ultra-luxurious, petrol-engined 550i. It’s that good.
The cabin is beautifully finished, and there’s room for four adults and their luggage. From the front seats BMW’s iDrive system manages the infotainment system; now in its umpteenth incarnation, it has been refined into the class-leading controller.
Negatives? Well, you can’t have it with an automatic transmission, which is a bit of a black mark in this area of the market. But frankly, if you’re a company car chooser and you’re shopping for something this size, you’d be crazy to not have the 520d ED at the top of your shortlist.