I have had 3 BMW X 5's in a row; My first was a 2000 3 litre which was very good but lacked a bit of punch, I then got the 4.4 litre 2003 which was great but then I upgraded to the 2004 with the full glass roof, the new engine and transmission and it is better. It is great in the snow, handles really well and brakes that way too. The fuel economy is not even good but it is slightly better than my previous 4.4 litre. The premium seats are terrific and the sound system is up to snuff. So who cares if the look is a bit stodgy and could use a real redo. Please BMW don't kill it looks wise like you did my beloved 540i or I'll finally have to go to the competition.
The premium seats and the full glass sun roof (my summertime convertible) are great luxury items and the great handling, braking, and new transmission are great driving items. The vehicle is powerful, safe yet fast and very comfortable. You get a great sense of its overall competance while driving.
Get rid of the two part rear hatch, I always have problems with it either vibrating or not closing properly - You would think that BMW would come up with a solution for snow build up on wiper blades - It is stupid that a vehicle this expensive uses the same wiper system as a Lada.
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