New 592bhp BMW M5 morphs into MotoGP’s safety car | Top Gear
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New 592bhp BMW M5 morphs into MotoGP’s safety car

The ultimate bike race series scores the ultimate BMW supersaloon pace car

Published: 30 Oct 2017
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BMW’s long tradition of providing its latest, greatest M car for MotoGP racing safety car duties rumbles on. Here’s the latest member of the family: the 2018 Moto GP BMW M5 safety car. And it’s more than a few stickers on a 592bhp saloon…

BMW’s thrown the complete catalogue of optional M Division ‘performance parts’ at the MotoGP M5. Maybe they covered it in glue. Anyway, there’s a new carbon fibre diffuser, carbon sills, carbon kidney grilles, carbon mirrors... essentially, anything that you would normally presume is plastic, is now carbon. You can spec all of these lightweight CFRP parts, and the lighter titanium sports exhaust, on your new ‘G30'-gen M5 when it goes on sale later this year.

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What you can’t have is the MotoGP car’s jutting front splitter. It’s made of (guess?) carbon fibre, and is specifically saved for the motorcycle race series pack leader. And don’t expect to spec the racing bonnet catches or the lightweight bucket seats from the M4 GTS in your new M5 soon either. Still, it’s an interesting study of what a new BMW M5 CS would feature, no?

Behind the lashings of carbon fibre, there’s no power increase, but that’d be quite greedy given the new M5 is already developing 592bhp from its 4.4-litre bi-turbo V8. And now that it’s all-wheel drive, it dispatches 0-62mph in 3.4 seconds. And it’s the only vehicle on the MotoGP grid that can pull off a full-bore getaway without popping a wheelie.

We don’t expect the MotoGP safety car to be engaging its new ‘M xDrive’ party piece of disengaging the front driveshafts and assume the attitude a near-600bhp rear-drive tyre-destroyer, but we can live in hope. Something to ponder if the TV ratings ever dip, we suppose, but on current form, the MotoGP is a long way short of needing extra drama to keep us glued.

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