BMW has given its pioneering X5 SUV a mid-life facelift that will be in showrooms soon
BMW has done a good job of keeping the new X5 facelift under wraps, so much so, in fact, that we only caught it testing in hot X5 M form. That model will come later, right now it’s the turn of the standard BMW X5 SUV with a new exterior design, tweaked powertrain lineup and technology updates for 2023 to roll into the spotlight.
The X5’s importance, not just within BMW’s SUV model lineup but in the brand’s range as a whole, is well documented. The first generation model, alongside the original Porsche Cayenne, helped shape the current large premium SUV market and this newly facelifted model is looking to top the sector once again.
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BMW has set about the exterior of the X5 with thinner headlights and a new rear light signature, a reshaped grille and a new front bumper to “express its robust character”. Air intakes have also been redesigned and M Sport models have gained a more aggressive look with black gloss paint on the lower bumper, black kidney grilles with bespoke inserts and a new bumper at the rear.
The interior of the X5 has been given a tweak too. It receives BMW’s latest version of the iDrive infotainment system on a curved display – also seen on the recently facelifted 3 Series. Made up of a 12.3-inch touchscreen and a 14.9-inch driver’s display, the design changes the layout of the dash, with some of the climate control buttons being relocated to the screen. Volume for the radio and demister buttons have been retained as physical switches underneath.
Further cabin design changes come in the form of a new strip on the dash with ‘X5’ script on it. Wood interior trim is now standard, along with reshaped air vents and a smaller crystal gear selector seen on BMW’s pure-electric ‘i’ models.
Prices and equipment
The X5 range once again starts with the xLine trim level. It gets 19-inch alloy wheels as standard, along with aluminium roof rails, sport seats, front electric and heated seats, adaptive LED headlights, parking assist and a smartphone wireless charger. The xLine starts from £66,230.
The M Sport model can be had from £69,730 and features adaptive suspension, a sportier M bodykit, gloss black detailing and 20-inch rims. The £87,210 M60i adds metallic paint, 22-inch wheels, an M Sport differential, active steering and BMW’s ‘M Sport Pro Pack’ which includes a beefier exhaust system, red painted brakes and M Sport seat belts.
Engine range changes
BMW has made some big adjustments to the X5’s powertrain lineup, although every model still gets an eight-speed transmission sending power to an all wheel-drive system. 48V mild-hybrid technology comes to all petrol and diesel models with the engine range kicking off with a hybridised 3.0-litre, straight-six diesel, putting out 294bhp and 670Nm of torque. Another diesel option will be added in summer 2023.
Up next is the entry petrol model, the xDrive40i. It has a 3.0-litre, twin-turbocharged straight-six with 375bhp and 540Nm of torque. 0 to 62mph stands at 5.4 seconds and it’ll reach a top speed of 155mph. More importantly given the addition of mild-hybrid power, BMW claims an economy figure of 28.5 to 33.2 mpg, a slight improvement on the outgoing car. The hybrid motor allows for electric-only driving at low speeds, too.
An M60i version will lead the line until the new X5 M is out. It still has a rather impressive 4.4-litre, twin-turbocharged V8 with mild-hybrid power, putting out 523bhp and 750Nm of torque. It might not ultimately be the most potent X5 model, but this power places it firmly in the hot SUV market, with a 0-62mph time of 4.3 seconds.
The plug-in hybrid xDrive50e has also been updated. A 3.0-litre, straight-six petrol engine is mated to a battery which has grown 25 per cent over the old car’s to 25.7kWh. Total system output has grown by 94bhp to 483bhp, with torque standing at 700Nm. Electric-only range is also up from 58 to 68 miles and prices start from £78,360.
Despite the introduction of mild-hybrid power, boot space hasn’t taken a hit. The MHEV X5s have a maximum of 650 litres with the rear seats up with a maximum 1,870-litre capacity with the seats down. Seven-seats can be specified as an option on xDrive40i and xDrive30d variants.
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