New BMW X5 Review

23 Feb 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on New BMW X5 Review

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BMW X5 video review

Family-friendly luxury SUV has been improved in its latest iteration.

Make BMW Family X5 Series F15 Year 2013 Badge Description xDrive50i Doors 5 Seats 5 Transmission Sports Automatic Engine Configuration Description V90 Gear Num 8 Cylinders 8 Build Country Origin Description UNITED STATES Car Size Large Fuel Type Description Petrol – Unleaded ULP Drive Description 4X4 Constant

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You certainly get that feeling with the latest third generation model launched in Canada this week ahead of its local arrival in December.

While there is a suite of major changes – both visually and mechanically – there is also a solid sense of familiarity about the new X5. And for loyal owners that is not such a bad thing, because, quite simply, there wasn’t much wrong with its predecessor – which is evident by the fact that BMW has seen sales continue to grow year on year throughout its entire lifecycle.

From a design perspective, it will take a trainspotter – or having both the old and new cars side by side – to notice the level of detail in the changes. But rest assured, every panel is new and it looks both tauter and classier in its appearance in the metal.

The same applies to the cabin, which has a clear family resemblance to the mainstream sedans such as the latest#160; 3-Series , #160;5-Series #160;and#160; 7-Series #160;models. There is a classy mix of materials, clear instrumentation, great all-round vision and plenty of adjustment in the seating position for a wide range of drivers.

The centre console is now dominated by a 10.2-inch widescreen multimedia screen which is controlled by a new generation iDrive control system that features a touch pad on top of the rotary dial, which takes a bit of time to acclimatise to but works a treat once you are used to its idiosyncrasies.

As you’d expect, there’s ample room in the back seat for adults to travel in comfort and a generous 650-litre boot that extends to 1870L with the 40:20:40 split rear seat folded down.

Not matter how many people it’s carrying though, the X5 offers more than adequate levels of performance, luxury and flexibility in the way it drives.

We only got to sample the range-topping petrol V8 (dubbed X5 50i) and the mid-spec turbo diesel (X5 30d) on the launch north of Vancouver, but, by the time it arrives in Australia, they will be joined by the M50d with its monstrous#160; 700Nm triple turbo diesel six-cylinder #160; and a rear-wheel drive model with a 2.0-litre turbo four (called the X5 sDrive 25i) will become the price leader when it joins the range in the middle of next year.

Not surprisingly, the 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8, which produces more both power and torque – up 30kW and 50Nm to 330kW/650Nm – and yet uses less fuel, is the sweetest of the two engines. It feels effortlessly powerful and ultra smooth in its delivery and is matched perfectly to the seamless eight-speed automatic gearbox for relaxed cruising.

Flick it into Sport mode and its character rises from effortless to energetic and it makes light work of overtaking or a quick blast up a back country road.

There’s also enough aural presence emanating from its twin tailpipes to please the driver, and alert other motorists of its potential performance.


The diesel is hardly a slouch either; with 190kW and 560Nm on tap it feels nearly as rapid as the V8 and just as effortless, but doesn’t have the same level of smoothness, nor does it sound as sweet.

Underneath the X5, it now rides on a mixed suspension set up with conventional steel springs up front and air-filled dampers at the back linked to an adaptable system with comfort and sports settings. In the former, both variants of the X5 we drove displayed exceptional levels of ride comfort even on 20-inch alloys, although it must be noted that the roads were typically smooth for an Alpine region and we’ll have to reserve final judgement of how it will tackle Australia’s patchwork of roads when it arrives.

Similarly, in Sport mode both handled the twisty mountain passes with such sure-footedness that they easily masked their two-tonne kerb weight.

If there’s any area for improvement it’s the car’s steering feel; in both comfort and sport modes, the electric assistance doesn’t return to centre as naturally as a traditional hydraulic system, but otherwise feels light around town for such a big car.

But, overall, the new X5 displays incremental improvements in every conceivable area – luxury, performance and efficiency – that is a clear case of if ain’t broke, don’t mess with it.

Fast facts

Engine: 4.4-litre twin turbo V8

Power: 330kW at 5500rpm

Torque: 650Nm at 2000-4500rpm

Transmission: 8-spd automatic, AWD


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