Four powertrain options offer four distinct personalities but in general, the 2024 X5’s quick acceleration and sticky handling earn it a 7. The M60i and X5 M performance SUVs would earn another point to an 8.
Yes, except for the base sDrive40i that is rear-wheel drive, though it’s a $2,300 option. Every other X5 has xDrive, or all-wheel drive in BMW speak.
How fast is the BMW X5?
It starts off quickly then launches into the M range. The base X5 sDrive40i and its xDrive all-wheel-drive variant sport a revised turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-6 rated at 375 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque, abetted by a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. The mild hybrid is unnoticeable until coasting in Eco mode, when it takes over in silence and gives the engine a rest. It also helps boost power off the line and through the power band, shaving one second off last year’s 0-60 mph time to 5.2 seconds.
Paddle shifters let you pretend you’re smarter and quicker than the 8-speed automatic, and maybe it could be during uphill passing when a three-gear downshift is in order; 99% of the time, the 8-speed is a seamless zipper as understated as the mild-hybrid parts.
The 8-speed and mild-hybrid apply to the M60i xDrive, formerly known as the M50i. The twin-turbo 4.4-liter V-8 makes 523 hp and 553 lb-ft, and it hits 60 mph in 4.2 seconds. This M-lite might be all the BMW X5 performance desired while still having a ride pliant enough for long distance cruising, unlike the kidney-punishing X5 M models.
The X5 M Competition gets the mild-hybrid system for the first time in any BMW M, and with the twin-turbo V-8 it makes 617 hp. It rears back on launch to sprint to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds. Top speed is 155 mph, but the available M Driver’s Package hits 177 mph. For a utility vehicle weighing 5,498 pounds, better test those limits on the track only or the widest, most uncrowded slice of Autobahn.
Or the X5 can also be used as a workhorse, towing up to 7,200 pounds (the xDrive50e PHEV tows up to 5,952 pounds), which is one of the highest ratings for a midsize crossover SUV.
2024 X5 xDrive50e plug-in hybrid updates
The X5 xDrive50e plug-in hybrid also receives critical updates. A larger 25.7-kwh battery pack helps bump the electric range by 8 miles to 39 miles total, which should satisfy most daily commuters in EV power only. The new inline-6 used in other models embraces greater efficiency with a new injection system and improved exhaust components, while a new synchronous motor increases output by 83 horsepower. Together, the powertrain produces 483 hp and 516 lb-ft, resulting in a 0-60 mph time of 4.6 seconds. Additionally, at a max charge rate of 7.4 kw on a 240-volt connection, the xDrive50e can charge to full in three hours and 15 minutes.
Driving impressions to come on the plug-in hybrid.
2024 BMW X5 ride and handling
All models corner with verve, thanks in part to standard independent suspensions and adaptive dampers, but ride quality stiffens noticeably with wheels larger than the standard 20-inchers. The run-flat tires across the range also add some firmness. The available air suspension makes for a worthwhile upgrade to cushion the X5 from road sores, as well as raise the ground clearance for the occasional off-road jaunt or lower it for better efficiency.
The X5 M is no performance whim. With its active roll bars and Michelin Pilot Sport 4S summer tires, the X5 M feels as if it shrinks the SUV down to a hatchback, but in everyday driving the suspension tuning can be unnecessarily stiff.