(continued from above)
Both models are powered by a BMW M engine that departs purposefully from the
established ultra-high-revving V-8 and V-10 M engines powering the M3, M5 and M6
models. For power, torque, and response characteristics, BMW M has adopted twin
turbocharging, direct fuel injection and accompanying technologies that achieve
the ever-consistent BMW M goal of the highest level of performance.
Displacing 4395 cubic centimeters (4.4 liters), the V-8 is identical in size to
the V-8 that powers the series X6 xDrive50i, both 7 Series V-8 models, and the
new 550i Gran Turismo. From this common starting point, the M engine goes a
distinct M way, with twin scroll technology and the world's first "crossover"
exhaust manifold connecting both of the V-8's cylinder banks. It delivers a
monumental 555 horsepower at 6,000 rpm.
As an important part of the
vehicle concept, the V-8's power is transmitted to all four wheels via BMW's
standard-bearing xDrive all-wheel drive system. Further, power is apportioned
strategically between the two rear wheels by the Dynamic Performance Control
first seen on the standard X6 a year ago. Factor in BMW M's treatment of the
already advanced Sports Activity Vehicle suspension, a newly developed
Servotronic steering system, and prodigiously dimensioned composite brakes, and
you have a pair of vehicles that unite performance, versatility and presence as
nothing before them has done. In this context, one could easily say that
"unique" is an understatement.
The BMW X5 M Magic
mastery of motorsports and high-performance sports automobiles is well
established. Now, with the X5 M, BMW M extends its performance mastery to BMW's
all-wheel-drive Sports Activity segment. The result is a heretofore unknown
combination of performance attributes with all-road ability and commanding
driving position - truly a new dimension in automotive competence.
this competence doesn't come through as merely extreme performance. That is
present, of course, but in the BMW M tradition it is combined with aerodynamics,
design and driver ergonomics into a harmonious whole, an entity that puts the
driver in a position to extract and enjoy that performance without stress or
Typical M Design
performance dynamics are expressed clearly in the exterior design. From the
front, the hood and headlight clusters derive from the standard X5. Generous air
intakes dominate the lower surfaces, communicating that the twin turbo/twin
scroll V-8 requires a large volume of air to produce its 555 hp and its likewise
powerful brakes must also be cooled effectively. In this view, the specific M
aerodynamic exterior mirrors, two-toned in dark Shadowline finish and body
color, are also prominent.
In profile, traditional M "gills" are positioned above and aft of the front
wheel wells, which house 20-in. wheels and ultra-high performance run-flat tires. Here as well as at the front
and rear, protective black areas of the standard X5 model are replaced by body
color, which accents the fact that the Ms are intended mainly for on-road use.
At the rear, typical M design elements again confirm the bold sportiness; the rear aspects, though, differ markedly as do their standard
counterparts. The X5 M frames its "quad" chrome exhaust tips with lower diffuser
BMW X5 M: Review (2/2)