Finally, at long last, I managed to get my wife into a new set of wheels. Nothing wrong with her old 2002 Toyota Highlander which we're going to keep as a spare car, just ready for something new. She works her tail off and deserves it. God Bless America. My E93 was supposed to have been her car, but she decided after two weeks that she just couldn't get used to sitting so low, didn't feel safe driving it, and was afraid of curbing it. So oh darn, I got "stuck" with the convertible , but have been feeling quite guilty for the past year. Finally things have been made right.
2012 BMW X5 xDrive35d (turbodiesel)
- Deep Sea Blue Metallic
- Sand Beige Nevada Leather w/Dark Burl Walnut Trim
- Premium Package (Navigation, Rear/Top View Cameras, 4-zone climate, etc)
- Multi-Contour Seats
- 3rd row seating
- 265hp, 425 ft-lbs torque, 19/26 mpg (22 combined), 0-60 in 6.9s
Driving & Handling: Love it! The misses loves it too. A huge upgrade from her first gen Highlander. It's a diesel. Have wanted a diesel for 5+ years now, so I'm happy to finally have one and also see more of them coming to the U.S., although still mainly from German automakers. Being nice during break-in since we might buy out the lease when done so haven't flogged it yet, but love the torque. Gets up to speed quickly and effortlessly. Super refined and doesn't sound bad at all, just different than a gas engine. Despite being a big 5200lb 7-passenger SUV, it still drives and handles like a BMW! Great steering feel and very balanced in the corners. Cornering speed is excellent too, much better than I was expecting. Ride is on the firm side, but well damped and comfortable. Even rough patches of pavement don't feel harsh which is good.
Interior: Overall the interior is pretty nicely put together, but there are some cheap and hard plastic bits in a few areas. The carpeting especially in the back/3rd row area did seem just a tad below price grade too, but whatever. The Multi-Contour seats (20 way adjustable) are soo nice for a 6'3" wide-framed dude like me who often has trouble finding just the right seating position or getting the right amount of support in the right areas. A waste for my wife and it's her DD, but I do all the driving when we're out as a family or going on trips so important for me to be comfortable. The third row seats are for kids or smaller adults only, but wow what a convenience to finally be able to fit our family plus guests all into one vehicle. No problem back there for our two kids (3 and 5), but visibility definitely isn't the best for them. Can't see out the windows much, but it's for short trips typically 30 minutes or less anyways. Climate control is 4-way with a blower in the third row also, but seems like my E93. A bit weak and a bit loud.
Electronics / Technology: Still playing with it. Our first car with i-Drive. Specifically didn't want it and ordered it without it in my E93. There's no "sync all" option to sync radio station, i-Drive, and other miscellaneous settings between the two key fobs / drivers. That would be handy. Overall it seems a bit clunky, but I guess this is the norm. You can't do nearly as much in my non i-Drive E93, but it does what it does faster. Have barely played with the Navigation and not at all with the voice command options. Really really like the rear view and top view cameras. Very slick being able to see exactly where and how you're positioned in a parking space, especially for my wife!
Can't wait to get some more seat time in it. We'll be doing some hour long weekend trips with it coming up, and one last trip to the beach before school starts so looking forward to seeing what kind of mileage I can get with it on the highway. Rated 26 mpg but people can get 27-28 taking it easy. Probably won't quite reach that on a brand new vehicle that hasn't been broken in, but we'll see. The misses loves it and is quite pleased, but it definitely drives a whole lot different than her old Highlander so taking some getting used to. She'll get it.
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12 BMW E70 X5d (IT'S HERE!)
11 BMW E93 335i convertible (the Bavarian | pics)
02 Highlander Ltd V6 AWD (the beloved)
the X5 has aged extremely well. But that 3rd row looks like a serious punishment, especially from that camera angle. Congrats on getting a diesel. I dont think I will ever own another regular gas engine vehicle.
Congratulations. A nice and versatile all-around vehicle....and pleasant to drive. Gives you the best of both worlds......BMW steering/chassis engineering and the ability to both go through winter weather and carry stuff. I agree with you, though, that the I-Drive, electronic-shifter, and some of the dash-controls can be frustrating.
I notice you got it at Passport BMW in P.G. County. That's one of the few local D.C.-area BMW shops I haven't been to in recent years, either to do a BMW review or to help others do their car-shopping. How did you like the place? Did they treat you fairly? At one time, most BMW reps and dealer-personnel, like those at Mercedes and Porsche, were snooty, aristocratic, and unfriendly, but that seems to have gotten much better in recent years.
Congrats! Did you cross-shop this with anything else? My wife and I are starting to look at SUVs (won't purchase for another year or so) and the X5 is currently atop her list. The other one she likes, at the moment, is the Cayenne. She doesn't want another Lexus so we'll be going German for her next vehicle.