April 6, 2011 @ 8:00 am

[Image via NYTimes]

The eagerly awaited new BMW M5 won’t debut at the 2011 Shanghai Auto Show. Instead, the Concept M5 will be shown. A similar, but not identical, version of the M5.

When questioned about how close this concept car is to the next-generation M5, which is expected to be introduced at the Frankfurt Auto Show in September, a BMW spokesman, David Buchko, said, “It’s pretty close, but it’s not exactly the new M5.”

The 2012 M5, when it is introduced, could return BMW to the top of the midsize supersedan heap, a position it occupied for many years before its status was challenged by the likes of the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, the Audi RS6 and the Cadillac CTS-V. All of those sedans have somewhat more muscle than the 2010 M5’s 500 horsepower, although it could be argued that they never quite matched its athleticism, and for Bimmer believers, they certainly never matched its cult-car status. [Source]

The auto show runs April 21-28. Other expected debuts are an all-new Chevrolet Malibu and Volkswagen Beetle.

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