2009 BMW X5

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16 CITY / 22 HWY
Overall Quality
Overall Performance and Design
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What Changed for 2009:
  • Minor changes for 2009
  • New nomenclature
  • All-new diesel xDrive35d model
  • Revised option package content
The first-generation X5, introduced in 2000, redefined the premium sport utility segment. BMW called their first luxury SUV a \"Sport Activity Vehicle\" (SAV), a direct reference to its engineering design of premium handling, performance, efficiency, practicality and versatility over more traditional SUVs with their heavy off-road capabilities. The early X5 carried up to 5 passengers in sophisticated luxury. It offered full-time all-wheel drive (AWD) for control during inclement weather and car-like handling. Completely redesigned in 2007, the second-generation BMW X5 was slightly larger and addressed the limited cabin space of the previous model as it offered optional seating for up to 7 passengers. The engine choices remained either 6- or 8-cylinder powerplants. For 2009, BMW has changed the nomenclature (\"xDrive\" is added to the name) and added a brand new diesel powerplant-under the hood of the X5 xDrive 35d. In addition, the automaker has made minor changes to the content in several of the option packages.

BMW provides a 4-year/50,000-mile new-vehicle limited warranty and a 4-year/unlimited mileage membership in the BMW Assist Safety Plan with every 2009 X5. The BMW Maintenance Program includes all factory-recommended maintenance items for the first 4-year/50,000-mile period of ownership.

Model Lineup
Three different BMW X5 models are offered for 2009: X5 xDrive 3.0i, X5 xDrive 3.5d, and the range-topping X5 xDrive 4.8i. The X5 xDrive 3.0i and X5 xDrive 3.5d both feature 6-cylinder powerplants and a full complement of power accessories as standard equipment. Automatic climate control, 10-way power front seats, dual-pane panoramic moonroof and an AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio system are found on both models. The 8-cylinder X5 xDrive 4.8i SAV offers even more standard features, including self-leveling rear springs, upgraded leather upholstery and special distinguishing exterior trim.

Several option packages are available on the X5 models. The Premium package offers a universal garage door opener, auto-dimming mirrors, lumbar support, ambient lighting package, BMW Assist with Bluetooth, and a power tailgate for 2009. The Sport package adds larger wheels and tires, 3-spoke sport steering wheel, AdaptiveDrive Active Roll Stabilization and Electronic Damping Control, sport seats, and an Anthracite headliner. A Technology package includes a rearview camera, Park Distance Control, Voice Command, and a DVD-based navigation system with real-time traffic information. The Cold Weather package includes heated front seats, heated steering wheel, ski bag, headlight washers, and new heated rear seats for 2009. Stand-alone options include Sirius satellite radio, HD radio, head-up display, third-row seating, and upgraded leather upholstery. Standard wheels are 18-inch aluminum alloy. Nineteen-inch wheels are optional on 3.0i and 3.5d models, while the 4.8si model offers optional 20-inch wheels with performance tires.

The 2009 BMW X5 is offered with a choice of three different engines. The standard engine in the X5 xDrive 3.0i is a 3.0-liter, fuel-injected 6-cylinder powerplant rated at 260 hp and 225 lb.-ft. of torque. EPA fuel-economy ratings are 15 mpg city/21 mpg highway. The X5 4.8si SAV is powered by a 4.8-liter 8-cylinder powerplant rated at 350 hp and 350 lb.-ft. of torque. EPA fuel-economy ratings are 14 mpg city/19 mpg highway. All-new for 2009 is the diesel-powered X5 xDrive 3.5d. Its 3.0-liter, twin-turbocharged 6-cylinder powerplant is rated at 265 hp and 425 lb.-ft. of torque (according to BMW, it will sprint to 60 mph in less than 7 seconds). The EPA fuel-economy ratings for the new diesel are 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway.

All X5 engines are mated to BMW's 6-speed Steptronic automatic transmission. Standard on all 2009 X5 models is BMW's xDrive, a full-time AWD system that electronically varies front/rear torque split and traction control to offer optimal traction and control under varied road conditions, BMW says. The X5 features a fully independent suspension engineered for driving dynamics and agility on paved roads. (The X5 is not designed for heavy off-road use; therefore it is not equipped with a transmission \"low range\" or locking differentials.) Disc brakes with anti-lock control (ABS) are standard on all models.

In addition to 3-point safety belts and active head restraints, BMW equips all 2009 X5 models with advanced technology dual-threshold and dual-stage deployment front air bags. A front- and rear-compartment Head Protection System (HPS) \"curtain air bag\" helps to protect outboard passengers from injury, while a rollover sensor deploys air bags in the event of a rollover. For additional protection, a battery safety terminal is designed to cut off electrical power in a severe collision. Standard active safety features in every 2009 BMW X5 include ABS, dynamic stability control (DSC) with Brake Fade Compensation, Start-off Assistant, Brake Drying, Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), Dynamic Brake Control, and Hill Descent Control (HDC).

The 2007-09 BMW X5 has been crash tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). It received \"Good\" ratings (the Institute's highest) for both the frontal offset test as well as the side-impact test. By achieving \"Good\" ratings in both tests and offering standard electronic stability control, the BMW X5 is listed by the IIHS as a \"Top Safety Pick\" for 2009. The 2009 BMW X5 has also been crash tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In their frontal impact testing, it earned 5-star ratings for the driver (the Administration's highest rating) and 4-star front passenger ratings. Side-impact ratings were both 5-star, while the rollover rating was 4 stars.

One of the most common complaints about sport utility-type vehicles is that their raised center of gravity contributes to excessive body roll and lean in corners. In addition to being unnerving to the driver, this body roll upsets the vehicle's suspension reducing operator control. The 2009 BMW X5 addresses this problem with an innovative technology called AdaptiveDrive. The system is a combination of active anti-roll stability and variable damper control. Utilizing special sensors, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, steering-wheel position, road speed and vehicle ride height are continuously monitored. If the system detects excessive body roll, sway motors on the anti-roll bars and electromagnetic valves on the dampers are engaged to actively adjust the suspension geometry. Handling dynamics are greatly improved, BMW claims, while all passengers benefit from a more comfortable ride.


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