The 2018 BMW M5 will piss you off and blow you away at the same time

Enthusiasts will bemoan the loss of rear-wheel drive, but a trick up the drivetrain's sleeve should clear up any mention of heresy.

BMW

BMW won't officially unveil the 2018 M5 sport sedan until later this year at the Frankfurt Motor Show, but the automaker isn't beyond divulging a bit of information early.

Under the hood, the 2018 BMW M5 will feature a revised version of the 4.4-liter, twin-turbocharged V8 its predecessor wielded. However, this time around, it's tuned to produce somewhere north of 600 horsepower, thanks in part to new turbochargers. The sole transmission is an eight-speed automatic, and all-wheel drive is standard.

Those aren't tailpipes -- they're cannons.

BMW

That last bit might upset some M5 fanatics, as the car has been rear-wheel drive since its inception. BMW's new M xDrive system should put those concerns to rest, though, as it's capable of sending all its power to the rear wheels. In fact, there's a drive mode specifically for RWD that basically deactivates the front axle entirely. AWD is still available for drivers who want the most performance possible, of course.

This is sort of similar to the 2018 Mercedes-AMG E63, which offers a "drift mode" that sends all its power to the rear wheels. However, while AMG's setup might be primarily for drifting and skidding like a lunatic, BMW's RWD mode can be called whenever the driver wants to pretend like it's the good ol' days, skids or no.

As with other M5s, the 2018 M5 will carry some more aggressive aesthetics inside and out. The interior features an M-specific gauge cluster and a head-up display with all new graphics and built-in shift lights.

That's all that BMW is saying for now. We'll have to wait until September, when BMW pulls back the veil on the new M5 at the Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany.

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