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Bob Long
Automotive Editor - February 24, 2014

Expert Rating

5.0 (Excellent)
23 City / 34 Highway

Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.


The BMW 528i is the entry-level model from the brand's much beloved 5 Series lineup. One of the most emulated and coveted sedans in the world, the 5 Series is known for a nearly perfect balance of performance and luxury. It continues to shine.

The 528i is available in either rear-wheel drive or BMW’s X-Drive intelligent all-wheel drive—one of the best systems in the world. The 528i is powered by a stout turbocharged four-cylinder engine.

What's New for 2014

Built from the same platform as the much more expensive 7 Series sedan, the 528i gets some styling updates for 2014. Fresh contour lines for the surround of the BMW kidney grille and redesigned lower air intakes reinforce the sporty appearance. An extra crease in the apron, and slim, sharply contoured rear lights accentuate the width of the rear end.

The iDrive controller now comes standard with navigation, and features a touchpad surface allowing character recognition.

2014 bmw 528i side

Choosing Your BMW 528i

2014 bmw 528i interior front

The 528i comes in a single trim level. Despite its "base" designation, the 2-liter four-cylinder powering the 528i is one of the finest engines ever fitted to an entry-level vehicle. It delivers 240 horsepower, 260 pound-feet of torque, and 32 mpg in the EPA's highway cycle.

Standard features include 10-way power front seats, an eight-speed automatic transmission, run-flat tires, xenon adaptive headlights, navigation and BMW's iDrive infotainment system paired to a 10-speaker audio system.

The 528i is packed with a full range of active and passive safety features, including six airbags and adaptive brake lights that become brighter as braking forces increase. BMW Assist gives automatic collision notification, emergency assistance and concierge services.

2014 bmw 528i interior backseat

You'll pay extra, though, for many luxury-car essentials. Unlike competitors in this segment, for instance, neither leather upholstery nor a moonroof is standard in the 528i. Expect an MSRP that exceeds the $49,500 base price by several thousand dollars, even for a moderately optioned car.

These options can be added a la carte, or through popular packages like:

  • The Cold Weather Package ($950) adds heated elements to the front seats, steering wheel and rear seats, and includes retractable headlight washers.
  • The Luxury Seating Package ($2,400) includes multi-contour seats that are ventilated and active—capable of raising and lowering the seat's surface imperceptibly to reduce fatigue.
  • The M-Sport Package ($3,150) adds 18-inch performance wheels and tires, aerodynamic bodywork and a race-inspired M-steering wheel.
  • The new Luxury Line ($2,100) and Modern Line ($2,100) design packages add style elements inside and out. Luxury and convenience options include a full-color heads-up display and active front seats designed to help reduce fatigue, and a rear-seat entertainment system with tablet-style displays.

Choose your BMW 528i >>

CarsDirect Tip

For the purest 5 Series experience, and maximum value, we recommend a lightly optioned 528i.

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