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For diesel fans: Review of X5 xDrive35d

Old 01-22-2010, 08:31 PM
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Just posted The Diesel Driver's test drive and review of the X5 xDrive35d.

BMW carefully selected the 3er Series sedan and X5 SAV ((Sport Activity Vehicle, BMW parlance for SUV) as the flagships of the BMW Advanced Diesel line. It doesn't take long to understand the company's logic after spending time behind the wheel of either car.

While the 335d is the embodiment of the Ultimate Driving Machine, the X5 xDrive35d, which competes with the Audi Q7 TDI, Mercedes-Benz GL320 BlueTech, and the Volkswagen Touareg, is the performance leader in this crowd.
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Old 01-25-2010, 10:11 AM
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I had the E70 X5 3.0Si but then again if I get an E70 it will be 3.0 Diesel chip tuned as they dont chip the 3.5d here in Moscow. Chip tuned 3.0 Diesel adds like 30-40 bhp they say and it will really add torque
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Old 01-31-2010, 06:38 PM
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Another great article, Jonathan. I'm looking at the X5 xDrive35d for my wife and I've had the chance to drive the car relatively extensively over the last couple of weeks. Based on my tests, I absolutely agree with your assessment and your conclusions.

if BMW's aim was to deliver the performance of the V8 with the economy of the I6, I have to say they have delivered. The twin turbo diesel is a simply tremendous engine, delivering a monstrous surge of seemingly never-ending torque. It remains absolutely composed and refined at freeway speeds - it is no noisier than (and I suspect actually quieter than) the X5 gasoline engines. Couple this performance and refinement with the usual BMW attributes - quality ride and handling - and you've got a great package. It's definitely made the cut and will probably be one of the two cars on our shortlist. As I said before, it really is a great blend of the best attributes of the I6 and V8 powered X5's.

The only three things that may count against it are that the interior is (arguably) a little austere, that filling up with diesel is a little more challenging given the still fairly limited availability of filling stations that also offer diesel and that the car needs a lot of options before the spec is one you would want to live with. Obviously, the interior is far from poor - overall quality is clearly high - it's just a little bland, and the leather is a little too hard. My wife perhaps places more of a premium on these things than I, but I see her point. On the second point, the nearest diesel filling station is a drive away from where we live. Not a deal breaker, and offset to a great extent given the extended time between fill-ups. To the third, BMWs have always needed to be optioned to get the spec to where you would want it to be. The base car is fairly sparsely equipped, and you'll need to add 10K to 15K to the base price for a decently equipped car.

That said, the X5 xDrive 35d is fantastic. By and large, it lives up to the hype - and there's decent chance we'll have one on our driveway at some point!

One final comment is that supply is still very tight - these cars will probably hold their value fairly well. As a comparison, we looked at a pre-owned Audi Q7 TDI yesterday. At around a year old and with 6K on the clock, it was actually priced just a couple of thousand below new... Pretty sure there would be quite a bit of room for negotiation there, but I can't imagine a BMW or Audi dealer pricing a pre-owned gasoline engined X5 or Q7 so close the price of a new car.
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