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STYLING | 8 out of 10
Car and Driver
somewhat unconventional styling
elegant interior décor
competitors offer more stylish and less austere environments
the overall air of firm luxury remains
Kelley Blue Book
Reviewers across the Web have some ambivalence to the 2008 BMW 5-Series's styling, but the wagon smooths over a number of details in its elongated silhouette.
Car and Driver describes this 2008 BMW's looks as having "quirky styling" and calls it “somewhat controversial.” Cars.com points out that its “flame surfaced” body and cat-eye headlamps were more controversial when they emerged in 2003; the “dramatically raked hood and squared off rump are more widely used by many automakers today, meaning the 5 Series now blends fairly well into the flow of traffic,” they write. In either case, Edmunds calls it a “wolf in a flamboyant sheep's clothing,” but changes for the new model year are slight.
Reviews on this BMW 2008's interior were similarly mixed. While Kelley Blue Book states "the overall air of firm luxury remains," Edmunds points out that "competitors offer more stylish and less austere environments." Autoblog reports several improvements for this 2008 BMW's interior, including "new door panels that include armrest mounted window switches and larger storage pockets" along with "extended wood trim [flowing] from the instrument panel into the door panel, giving a richer, warmer, more integrated look"--generally agreeing with ConsumerGuide's conclusion that the 2008 BMW definitely features "elegant interior décor." Automobile says “the new cabin is handsome but not as elegantly turned out as that of the new E-class,” though.
The 2008 BMW 5-Series features styling that may not appeal to everyone, but it’s still elegant.