The BMW X5 started the craze for SUV’s that drive more like a Sports Car than a clunky re-worked truck with covered back seats. If you can recall to the old days when the Toyota 4Runner was just a pickup with some back seats and a shell. Today this is the must have category of SUV’s where you get all the luxury, performance, and comfort of a sports sedan, with substantial utility to go off road, mountain snow driving, and room for 4 + gear.
The X5 has grown in size and popularity over the years with a bit of a cult following. The X3 is now about the size of the original X5, and this seems to be an overall trend to bump up the size of each model. The 2 Series is the same size as the old 3 series, etc.
The X5 however remains the flagship model of BMW’s SUV lineup still offering brilliant handling characteristics even with the extra room. I think it’s also a bit more stylish and attractive than any of their other SUV’s, including the more sporty X6 and X4.
I really like the interior of the BMW’s and they keep it simple, elegant, and and far less confusing than some models that are trying to make the cockpit look like a commercial airliner with endless switches, knobs, and dials. The idrive adds to the experience and certainly the most intuitive infotainment control system on the market.
Beyond performance and looks the X5 offers a lot of utility with 8″ of ground clearance, and enough storage to handle a packed car of skis, dogs, kids, and coolers.
Writing this review it’s hard to get too overboard because the X5 is such a well known and popular “standard” that all other lux SUV’s strive to be. It’s simply the best, most well rounded SUV in this class. The only drawback is the price tag keeps going up making this a bit less affordable. I suppose this is why the X3 has been moving up the ranks on sales volume as it has a bit more well placed price point for most consumers. There’s a $12,000 or so premium from the X3 to the X5.
BMW has a somewhat standard array of models across the line. You will notice that BMW as always seems to get better MPG and Faster 0-60 than the rivals. Just a genius transmission and engine performance marriage:
BMW X5 xDrive40i – $61,700 – 6 Cylinder 335 HP, with 0-60 in 5.3 Sec
BMW X5 xDrive 45e – $63,700 – 6 Cylinder + Electric 389 HP with 0-60 in 5.3 Sec
BMW X5 xDrive M50i – $82,800 V8 523 HP with 0-60 in 4.1 Sec
BMW X5 M – OMG!!!! – $105,900 V8 600 HP with 0-60 in 3.8 Sec – (Hold on to your hat!)
I built one for myself to compare across the line. This was a X5 40i, with a few upgrades to suit my style and needs – $69,400. You’ll need to put in a little overtime at work, but what a ride.
Build you own at BMW USA