We are big fans of the F90 M5 — in fact, who hasn’t fallen for its many charms (incredible driving dynamics, a trick all-wheel-drive system and of course 600 horses on tap) but BMW wasn’t happy because it wasn’t quicker than the bonkers Mercedes AMG E63 S. Well, it is now; with 617 horsepower, the M5 Competition is the most powerful incarnation of the M5 ever.
It’s become a separate model within the M5 lineup (Munich did the same thing with the recent M2 Competition) and its twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 has 17 horses more than the ‘standard’ super saloon. Peak torque remains at a massive 750Nm (it hits that over a wider range between 1,800 and 5,860rpm — 160rpm higher than the regular M5) while its eight-speed automatic has been beefed up to handle the extra power. The big news is that it can hit 0-100kph in 3.3 seconds making it quicker than the Merc and that’s all that matters to BMW but it’s incredible to think that it can also get to 200kph in 10.8 seconds and has an electronically limited top speed of 250kph but with the optional M Driver’s Package, you can hit 305kph before presumably losing your license...
It breathes a lot better thanks to a model-specific M Sport variable exhaust system which can also change the sound (depending on which mode you select) and there are lots of other new goodies too ranging from stiffer engine mounts, an M-specific Variable Damper Control system, to revised mounting for the front anti-roll bar. It also sits 7mm lower than the regular M5 and more negative camber has been dialled in to the front axle.
Stopping power comes from six-piston fixed callipers (lightweight M carbon-ceramic brakes are optional) hiding behind a set of two-tone 20in forged M alloys. They’re wrapped in 275/35R20 performance tyres in the front and larger 285/35/R20 rubbers at the back.
If you’re struggling to differentiate between the M5 Competition and ‘standard’ M5, then the extra gloss black trim found on the kidney grille, door handles, mirrors, side M gills, rear spoiler, window trim and the M5 Competition badge should help you to tell them apart.
Inside, the technology package features a 10.25in touchscreen that provides access to navigation, phone, vehicle functions, and entertainment. It also gets Merino Aragon full-leather upholstery, ‘aluminium carbon structure’ interior trim with dark chrome accents to go with the M division’s signature blue, purple, and red stripes on the seat belts while the floor mats are emblazoned with the M5 logo.
Last but not least, when you hit the start button the instrument cluster displays a unique M5 Competition graphic to remind you that you’re in the hottest M5 ever. You can consider those bragging rights well and truly stolen. Over to you, AMG...