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Car of the Year Awards 2022: Luxury Car of the Year

A luxury car obviously needs sumptuous materials, ride comfort worthy of a magic carpet, and a super-smooth engine. But models targeting company car drivers also need to offer low emissions...

WINNER: Luxury car

BMW 5 Series 530e M Sport (Pro Package)

Car of the Year 2022 - MotorEasy

One of the dictionary definitions of luxury is “A state of great comfort and ease, typically involving great expense”. But what makes the BMW 530e so brilliant is that you get the first two things without the last one.

Yes, there are more opulent saloon cars if you’re prepared to spend a lot more, but the 530e’s interior is still spacious and beautifully finished, plus it’s equipped with the most user-friendly infotainment system around. And while luxury and low pollution rarely go together, no matter what certain preachy celebrities might tell themselves, there’s no need to feel guilty about the ambience you’re enjoying in the 530e because, as a plug-in hybrid with an official electric range of 36 miles, it can complete many journeys without needing to emit any CO2 at all.

BMW 5 Series 2022 interior

This is also good for your bank balance, because electricity is cheaper than petrol – particularly if you’re able to top up the battery at home overnight. In addition, the fact that the 530e is a plug-in hybrid puts it in a much lower company car tax band than petrol and diesel alternatives. Being able to run purely on electric power is good for refinement, too. And even when the battery runs flat and the 530e’s 2.0-litre petrol engine needs to fire into life, the car is smooth and quiet enough to put some full-on limousines to shame.

True, SE-spec versions of the 5 Series can shimmy around a bit on anything other than super-smooth roads, and the standard M Sport suspension is pretty firm. However, specifying the optional M Sport Pro Package brings trick dampers that do a great job of settling down the ride without compromising the driving fun that the 5 Series has long been associated with.

BMW 5 Series 2022 rear

The 530e manages to feel sharper and more involving than direct rivals such as the Audi A6 50 TFSIe and Mercedes E300e, yet every bit as comfortable. The 530e offers all the performance you could need, too, cracking 0-62mph in less than six seconds, which is faster than plenty of hot hatches. And its eight-speed automatic gearbox doesn’t suffer from the low-speed jerkiness and hesitancy that the A6’s does.

If you’re planning to use your luxury car to chauffeur people around (and we’re not talking about the kids), you should take a look at the other models we recommend in this category. But otherwise the 530e really is the supreme luxury package, without the price tag to match.

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