2012 BMW M5 – Click above for high-res image gallery

Official 2012 BMW M5 images have leaked onto the Internet as the latest iteration of the legendary M model prepares to charge toward showrooms. The F10 M5 is flared and aero-ed up with bodywork that maintains a buttoned-up demeanor even as it radiates aggression. Onlookers can tell the M5 is a special car with its enlarged air intakes in the front fascia, quartet of tailpipes and 20-inch wheels with Z-rated tires, but it doesn't need to be festooned with wings and bling to make its point.

The 2012 M5 is about more than mere surface beauty, after all. The sonorous V10 of the last M5 has been traded out for a twin-turbocharged V8 fist. Power is up, with 552 horsepower (the V10 produced 507 hp) coming on at 6,000 rpm – 1,750 rpm lower than the V10. Torque is hugely boosted from 383 pound-feet to 501 lb-ft, which will be great for shoving this car to 60 miles per hour in a reported 4.4 seconds. That'll route to the rear wheels via a standard dual-clutch transmission, though a proper six-speed stick will reportedly be available here in the United States.

The cost of entry is rumored to be around €100,000 in Germany – about $144,000 based on current exchange rates. We're sure the actual U.S. price won't be anywhere near that high (the€100K number likely includes Europe's lofty value-added tax), but in any case, start saving your pennies.

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