RAC Cars News


7 key rivals for the new BMW 5 Series

By raccars Published


The new BMW 5 Series arrives in February 2017 and, as our first drive reveals, looks set to establish itself as the one to beat in the executive car sector.

But what if, for all its excellence, the new 5 Series still isn’t for you? Well, fear not. There’s still plenty of premium-badged choice in the choice car sector for high-rising businessmen. Here we look at seven luxury alternatives to the new BMW 5 Series.

Audi A6


The sleek Audi A6 is a sophisticated-looking large executive car that can still turn heads in company car parks. That’s despite its advancing years: Audi has kept it fresh with well-judged updates over the years. The most appealing model is the S-line, which has sporty styling and LED headlights, but watch the ride quality if you go for big wheels…

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Hyundai Genesis


A virtually unknown executive car, the big Genesis is Hyundai’s £50,000 challenger to the BMW 5 Series. Yes, a £50k Hyundai. It’s imported from America so is only offered with a big V6 petrol engine, which guarantees it niche appeal. It is very refined and very well equipped though: it proves that, even though it currently lacks the brand image, Hyundai really can make a convincing luxury car. Genesis is a brand to watch…

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Jaguar XF


The British player in the executive car sector is the sporty Jaguar XF. Now on its second generation, it’s a very well-crafted car that’s made largely from aluminium to save weight and improve efficiency. No expense has been spared on the car’s suspension, which is why it drives so well. The interior lacks the charm of the original, though.

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Lexus GS


The Lexus GS is a big, squared-off machine that is unique because of its powertrains - both the volume variants, GS 300h and GS 450h, are petrol-electric hybrids. This means they are very fuel-efficient and produce low levels of CO2, particularly the GS 300h. If only the interior layout and the driving dynamics were more engaging.

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Mercedes-Benz E-Class


The latest Mercedes-Benz E-Class is a true powerhouse of a car. Among the most sophisticated machines currently on sale, it’s a car so clever that it will even drive itself. Yes, semi-autonomous assist really will see the car take over on the motorway (for short periods of time). It’s a good-looking car too, much more svelte than its boxy predecessor.

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Skoda Superb


A surprise entry? Well, the Skoda Superb is certainly the value entry here. But it deserves a mention because it’s so smart-looking outside, so big on the inside and, on the road, such a surprisingly capable all-rounder to drive. Refinement is first class and the economical range of engines is comprehensive. Executive transport for middle-management prices.

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Volvo S90


The new Volvo S90 is another great car from the resurgent Swedish brand. Bringing all the appeal of the latest award-winning XC90 SUV into the executive saloon sector, standouts include its oh-so warm and welcoming interior, discreet and classy styling plus one of the most soothing drives in this sector. It’s certainly now one you shouldn’t overlook.

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