It may look familiar, but its platform and tech are all-new.
Yesterday’s leak has become today’s reveal. Presenting the all-new 2019 BMW X5 SUV, or Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) in BMW-speak. Expected to make its live premier this October at Paris, BMW has pulled the sheets off the fourth-generation X5 a few months early. So, let’s dig in. Built on BMW’s new modular CLAR platform, the new X5 may look familiar compared to its immediate predecessor, but look closely and you’ll see a number of changes, including standard adaptive LED headlights (Laserlights are optional), a larger and more angular twin kidney grille, and taillights sporting a 3D look.
The chiseled character line running from behind the front fender all the way towards the taillights provides a stronger appearance as well. Size wise, the new X5 is 1.1 inches longer and 2.6 inches wider than the outgoing model. Its new wheelbase also grew by 1.6 inches. Overall curb weight is about the same. Out back, there’s a new two-section tailgate for easier loading. As an optional feature, both sections can open and close automatically. There will also be an optional third row, but it won’t be available until next December. When it does, the second row bench will feature electric controls allowing it to slide, tilt, and fold down the backrests of both the second and third rows.
The interior, in general, is more upscale than before. There are two standard 12.3-inch screens, ambient and contour lights throughout the cabin and even a Swarovski crystal shifter and crystals in the iDrive 7.0 controller dial. You can even cool beverages in the cupholders. The optional panoramic sunroof features lights embedded into the glass resembling stars. Heated seats are standard while ventilated and massaging front seats are an option. Also come December, rear-seat passengers will benefit from an optional 20-speaker Bowers & Wilkins audio system. At launch, the 2019 X5 xDrive40i comes powered by a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six with 335 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque.
The xDrive50i receives the 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 with 465 hp and 479 lb-ft. Both engines are paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is standard and a locking differential is an option. Europe will also have a couple of optional diesels, a 3.0-liter turbo inline-six with two levels of output. One is expected to come to the US next year as the xDrive35d. Come 2020 a plug-in hybrid will debut, but we’ll have to wait a few more years for the new X5 M. BMW claims it’s improved the X5’s road manners with standard dynamic dampers, but buyers can also opt for the highly regarded Adaptive M Suspension Professional that adds rear-wheel steering and active roll stabilization.
An air suspension, for an even softer ride and the ability to raise or lower the ride height by up to 1.6 inches, is also optional. Standard safety features include blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, pedestrian monitoring, front and rear collision warnings, and city collision mitigation. There’s also the optional Active Driving Assistant Professional, adding traffic jam assist, lane keeping assist, automatic lane changing and collision evasion aid with steering assist. Set to go on sale in the US this November, BMW says pricing will be announced closer to that date.