The 5 Series Touring is roomier than its key rivals, the Audi A6 Avant and Mercedes E-Class Estate, so you’re unlikely to have any issues with head room. And because the front seats slide back a long way, leg room won’t be a problem, either.
Getting in is also comparatively easy, thanks to doors that open wide. The glovebox is a good size and there’s a lidded cubby behind the gearlever with USB ports that’ll take most wallets, keys or a mobile phone, along with two cup holders in front of it. Both door pockets will accommodate a small water bottle, but that’s about it.
BMW 5 Series Touring rear space
There’s enough room for a couple of tall adults, but carrying a third in the back isn’t as comfortable an experience on long journeys; shoulder room is tight and whoever's sitting in the middle has to straddle a raised central tunnel. There’s actually more leg room in the rival Mercedes E-Class Estate - although the margins are small - but by a similar whisker, the 5 Series beats it for head room.
Access to the rear seats is good, because the doors swing open wide and the aperture is usefully tall.
BMW 5 Series Touring seating flexibility
Just like the driver’s seat, the front passenger seat has electrical base height and backrest angle adjustment as standard, making it easy for your passenger to fine-tune his or her perfect position. It’s disappointing that electrically adjustable lumbar support costs extra, though – even on the more expensive trims.
With a push of a button just inside the boot entrance the rear seats flip down electronically and can be split in a 40:20:40 configuration. Once down they live flat with the rest of the boot floor, and given the Touring lack of any boot lip, it leaves a handily flat surface from boot entrance to the front seatbacks.
BMW 5 Series Touring boot space
The Touring's boot is slightly larger than before, with its 570-litre capacity (with the rear seats in place) making it marginally larger than the A6 Avant's and V90's, but it's still quite a bit smaller than the long-time class-leading Mercedes E-Class's.
However, the introduction of rear air suspension has increased the load weight it can hold, a powered tailgate with automatically retracting tonneau cover is standard, and the space on offer is consistently square with no load lip and very good access. Lashing hooks, nets and a handy storage compartment for the tonneau cover beneath the boot floor also feature.
BMW continues to fit its independently opening rear window, too, a USP within the class and genuinely useful for loading smaller items in tight spaces.