The BMW 520d gives you most of the features of the full fat M530d with for a significant amount less. The exteriors receive the same general changes with those snazzy new full LED headlamps but this being the Luxury line you get more sober bumpers than on the M Sport. There's also a different design for the 18-inch alloy wheels. The Luxury line comes with some of chrome garnish on the bumpers.
This being the Luxury line you get more sober bumpers than on the M Sport
It's a similar story inside. You get a different but still very elegant wood trim and some plush cream upholstery on the seats. The only things missing are the M sport steering wheel and the cool head up display. The car also get a smaller infotainment screen but it's still pleasant on the eye with a high resolution and smart graphics.
The 18-inch alloy wheel design is also different than on the 530d
Our favorite addition to the new 5 fortunately remains and you get the exact same full LED instrument console that changes colour and the dial faces based on what mode you're in.
You get a different but still very elegant wood trim and some plush cream upholstery on the seats
One of the big improvements with this car is the new Eco Pro mode that relaxes engine responses, slackens up the gearbox and helps you get more kilometres to the litre. Comfort mode is pretty much the in between setting you'd expect it to be while Sport mode sharpens throttle response, weights up the steering and primes the gearbox for more aggressive shift points. The 520d however doesn't get the Sport Plus mode with limited traction control intervention that you'd find in the 530d or even the 118d. The 2.0-litre 184PS/380Nm engine is smooth, and quite silent at low revs but doesn't mind being revved to the limit either. It's a likeable motor with a power surge that is more than sufficient.
The suspension set up on the 520d doesn't feel very different from the 530d with a supple but surprisingly (for a BMW) wallowy feel. The car is comfortable at low speeds but the up and down motion as the car passes undulations can get tiring at high speeds. Make no mistake the car still handles like a BMW should, with sharp turn in and good mid corner grip that turns to understeer only if you're too ambitious with the throttle half way through the bend. The 520d also uses the same ZF eight speed gearbox and thankfully comes with paddle shifters this time around. All in all the driving experience is up there with the 530 except for the massive slug of torque you get from the bigger car's straight six diesel.
The boot has ample of space
Overall the 520d is a good looking, well equipped and fun to drive package. The fact that it doesn't lose too many features but costs about 15 lakh rupees less at Rs42.9 lakh ex Delhi makes it a very compelling option if you're looking for a premium luxury sedan.