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BMW Creates Famous Race In The Desert To Show Off New X5

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The ambitious project took two weeks and more than 50 people to complete – all to show off the new X5’s off-roading prowess.

Back in the summer, BMW introduced the all-new 2019 X5. To promote the launch of the new mid-size SUV, BMW Italy has created a rather ambitious advertising campaign not long after the new BMW 8 Series became the first car to drive down a canal in Venice.

To show off the new X5, BMW Italy has faithfully recreated the iconic Monza racing circuit in the sands of the Sahara Desert. The track was built in Merzouga, one of the most desolate areas in Morocco, in a route spanning 3.6 miles among the sands and rocks of the Sahara. Every bend, every straight section, every chicane has been faithfully reconstructed on a 1:1 scale, both in the radius of curvature and in the distances.

The ambitious project took two weeks and more than 50 people to complete, including engineers, surveyors, technicians, workers, and pilots. For nine days, four bulldozers and 4 trucks dug 24 cubic meters at a time to prepare the soil and remove excess sand.

Over 3,500 cubic meters of earth had to be moved to recreate the historic race track. It's an impressive achievement but it sounds like a lot of effort just to promote the X5's off-roading prowess, although the sandy version of Monza looks like a lot of fun to slide around.

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The point of this project was to showcase the BMW X5's new xOffroad package, which is available for the first time in the X5 and features four selectable off-road driving modes: xSand, xRocks, xGravel, xSnow, which automatically determines the ideal vehicle height settings, xDrive system, acceleration response and transmission control. That's not to say the new X5 is a threat to the Range Rover, but it's certainly more off-road capable than its predecessor thanks to its new chassis and suspension systems.

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