We’ve yet to meet a carmaker that regretted joining the SUV club, and the BMW X5 is a perfect example of why. Originally considered a "heretic" by us in our review of the first generation more than 13 years ago, the vehicle became an instant sales success. Its sporting credentials were strongly upgraded with the second generation for 2007, which was also given the full-fledged.ut BMW reckoned there was a market for a sports activity vehicle rather than a sport-utility vehicle, and while it's easy to argue about the semantics of these labels, what Munich had in mind was a big all-wheel-drive beast that you would actually enjoy driving.
The new X5 xDrive 30d’s uprated 3.0-litre six-cylinder turbo-diesel engine produces 190kW of power and 560Nm of torque, up 10kW/20Nm from its predecessor. The new 30d accelerates from 0-100km/h in 6.9 seconds – seven-tenths quicker than before – yet fuel consumption falls more than 16 per cent to 6.2L/100km.The range kicks off with a nearly $8000 markup on the xDrive30d, followed by softer $245 and $755 increases on the xDrive50i petrol and M50d diesel. BMW has just announced local market pricing for the brand new X5 SUV and it starts at a whopping AU$99,990 before on-road taxes. That's a lot of money for any car, even BMW, and the base model isn't even that impressive: the X5 xDrive 30d equipped with a 3-liter turbodiesel producing 190 kW (258 PS) and 560 Nm.
With the 10.2-inch screen taking pride of place the interior is gorgeous to look at, while the levels of craftsmanship and comfort inside the BMW X5 are just astounding. Despite a slightly offset driving position, this is a terrific cabin in which to spend time, and to our eyes noses the X5 ahead of the Range Rover Sport in terms of overall quality.Comfort really is comfortable, bringing to the X5 a fluidity and level of bump absorption that simply wasn’t present in the old version. Even in Sport mode (Sport+ has the same level of damper stiffness but dials out the assistance from the ESP and traction control) this new X5 has a level of comfort that would have been utterly alien to its predecessor.
Customers can also order 20-inch light-alloy wheels with a distinctive V-spoke design.
To spruce up the cabin, BMW offers premium Merino leather upholstery - in Amaro Brown and Criollo Brown - with contrast stitching and accent piping. The crossover can also be ordered with Piano Black or Sen Light Brown trim that has a "perfectly executed finish.
For the first time in the history of the X5, and right from the market launch, BMW will also offer a rear-wheel-drive model—that’s the somewhat clumsily named sDrive35i. This version breaks with the dogma of offering only all-wheel-drive versions on the X5, as BMW seems to have realized that the off-pavement activities of most X5s are restricted to the negotiation of gravel driveways. Some versions weigh much the same, but others are as much as 200 pounds lighter. Drag has been reduced, too, the coefficient of the slimmest-wheeled version dropping from 0.34 to 0.31.At launch, the most powerful drivetrain available comes in the xDrive50i, which combines a twin-turbo 4.4 liter V8 with an eight-speed paddle-shift transmission and all-wheel drive. A 3.0-liter straight-6 powers the xDrive35i, while the diesel-powered xDrive35d model will join the lineup next year.
BMW Australia will expand its X5 line-up with the new 225kW xDrive 35i petrol and 235kW xDrive 40d variants in March/April after production of those models starts in December. Rear storage has grown to 650/1870 litres (depending on seat position), marking a 30/120 litre improvement.BMW says the standard feature set of the now more expensive xDrive30d model is "well above that of the outgoing model" - including an upgrade to 19-inch alloy wheels and new exterior trim highlights. Lastly, there's new M50d performance diesel, equipped with a 381 hp 3-liter tri-turbo that boasts fuel efficiency of 6.7 l/100km combined and a 0 to 100 km/h time of 5.3 seconds.