2023 BMW X5 30d review

Electrified Enhancements and Stylish Refinements: The Revamped BMW X5

Some of the MarkMeets team (Mark, Dan, Mo and Sarah) took the motor to the Isle of wight on a one day visit, here is what we found.

In a world where electric vehicles dominate discussions, BMW remains steadfast in catering to traditional automotive enthusiasts with its lineup of conventionally powered cars. The refreshed fourth-generation BMW X5, despite its reliance on fossil fuels, holds its ground as a significant player in the brand’s sales figures. Let’s dive into the key updates that make the facelifted Mk4 BMW X5 more relevant and appealing than ever.

Green Initiatives: Taming the Carbon Footprint

As concerns about environmental impact grow, BMW aims to address its vehicles’ carbon footprint. The revitalized BMW X5 showcases a slew of changes, including the introduction of new mild-hybrid petrol and diesel engines. One example is the xDrive30d, which houses a 3.0-liter diesel inline-six engine. Notable upgrades include the replacement of aluminum pistons with steel ones, an adjusted fuel-injection system, an innovative oil-scavenging process, and the integration of a 48V gearbox-connected starter-generator (ISG). Although power and torque figures remain unchanged at 282bhp and 479lb ft, respectively, these improvements contribute to the SUV’s overall efficiency.

The enhanced mild-hybrid attributes come to the forefront when engaging the Eco Pro driving mode. This mode allows the engine to idle while coasting, leading to prolonged periods of fuel-saving momentum. With a capacious 80-liter fuel tank, the revamped engine boasts an impressive theoretical range of up to 700 miles – almost double that of the pricier BMW iX electric counterpart. Furthermore, these mild-hybrid advancements contribute to reduced official CO2 emissions, a positive outcome despite the lingering 37% company car tax.

Aesthetic Evolution: Refreshed Exterior and Luxurious Interior

The facelifted BMW X5 boasts a range of exterior design enhancements. The makeover includes revamped headlights, tail-lights, alloy wheels, bumpers, and a front grille that can now be equipped with the optional ‘Iconic Glow’ illumination. Standard for all UK-bound models is the xLine exterior design, while the optional M Sport package amplifies the sporty aesthetic with more robust bumpers, upgraded 20-inch wheels and tires, and other sport-oriented elements.

Step inside the cabin, and you’ll be greeted by a refreshed dashboard featuring a captivating free-standing curved digital panel, akin to the design found in the recently updated X7. This configuration comprises separate 12.3-inch instrument and 14.9-inch infotainment screens powered by the latest (8.0) version of BMW’s iDrive operating software. Enhanced smartphone integration, now boasting 5G connectivity, complements the technological upgrades. Additionally, air-conditioning controls have transitioned from dedicated buttons to touchscreen functionality, while LED ambient illumination enhances various trim elements. With improved materials throughout, the interior exudes a heightened sense of opulence.

Spacious Comfort and Practicality

The interior of the BMW X5 continues to deliver a spacious and comfortable environment for passengers. Standard seating for five adults can be expanded to accommodate up to seven individuals with the optional third-row seats. The elevated seating position and expansive glass surfaces contribute to excellent visibility, setting the X5 apart from some of its premium SUV competitors. With 650 liters of cargo space beneath the cargo blind in the five-seat configuration, expanding to 1870 liters when the second-row seats are folded, the X5 offers ample storage for various needs.

Refined Performance: The Heart of the X5

Under the hood, the revised diesel engine in the xDrive30d variant demonstrates smooth and relatively quiet operation. Generating 335bhp in the xDrive40d version, this engine exhibits impressive isolation and responsiveness within moderate rev ranges. The integration of the new ISG provides an extra 12bhp and up to 148lb ft of torque, contributing to a sharper throttle response and enhanced delivery flexibility. The 2220kg xDrive30d model accelerates with confidence in lower gears, cruises effortlessly at highway speeds, and boasts a claimed WLTP combined test cycle fuel efficiency ranging from 28.7 to 33.1mpg. Towing capacity remains robust at 3500kg.

Driving Dynamics: Agility and Control

The BMW X5 maintains its reputation for engaging driving dynamics. The steering exhibits precision and well-balanced weighting, contributing to an enjoyable driving experience. The availability of active rear-steering enhances agility and tightens the turning radius. Whether equipped with standard steel springing or optional air suspension, the X5 showcases impressive body control, effectively handling undulations and minimizing lean through corners. The introduction of new software to control the electric damping system results in enhanced control over various road surfaces.

Conclusion: An Upgraded Classic

In summary, BMW’s revisions to the X5 breathe new life into a classic model. The xDrive30d variant, historically popular among UK buyers, offers an appealing blend of performance, refinement, comfort, practicality, cabin space, and quality. The facelift elevates an already classy, comfortable, and versatile SUV to new heights.

The Verdict: 4 Stars

The facelifted BMW X5 extends the appeal of a vehicle that was already recognized for its class-leading comfort, style, and versatility.

  • Price: £68,165
  • Engine: 6-cylinder inline, 2993cc, turbocharged diesel with ISG
  • Power: 282bhp at 4000rpm
  • Torque: 479lb ft at 1500-2500rpm
  • Gearbox: 8-speed automatic, 4WD
  • Kerb weight: 2220kg
  • 0-62mph: 6.1 seconds
  • Top speed: 145mph
  • Economy: 28.7-33.1mpg
  • CO2, tax band: 215-186g/km, 37%
  • Rivals: Audi Q7, Mercedes-Benz GLE

With its refined appearance, improved interior, and performance enhancements, the updated BMW X5 presents a compelling option for those seeking a luxurious and dynamic SUV experience.

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Stevie Flavio
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