Just purchased this vehicle with 40,000 miles on her and now its leaking oil. I am being told it is the "Dreaded Alternator Bracket Oil Leak" about 8 to 10 hours in labor to fix a $3 gasket. This is 1 of several problems. $1000 plus dollar repair.... really??? BMW 4.8L V8 has obvious problems and no recall. BMW needS to stand up for their mistakes and make them right. Do yourself a favor and DO NOT BUY A BMW!!!!!
So I've had 4 BMWs in the past 5-6 years and overall really love the brand. Unfortunately the purchase of my X5 has tarnished my otherwise positive view of build quality.
Generally I lease vehicles, but this I chose to purchase with the idea of keeping it for 6-8 years figuring I could justify the $80,000 price if amortized over those years.
The X5 has a lot of complex things about it so I wasn't foolish to think it would be a low maintenance vehicle - but didn't expect : at 39K miles - New A/C ($3500) - New rear struts ($2000), & now - a new TRANSMISSION! $10,000. Seriously, at 40K miles this is a disgrace. . My pampered X5 has sadly failed me. Summary : Extended Warranty.
Size, ride quality, look & feel, handling
Some fit and finish issues. Tail gate (power) rattled badly from the first year of ownership until now, despite repeated attempts to correct. Rubberized / textured interior parts have bubbled and peeled in a car that's been garaged most of its life. Too complex for smaller dealerships that don't know the car intimately to successfully work on without creating further issues.
I purchased my 2008 4.8 X5 new.
I now have 75k miles and have not had any major issues.
This car has been a joy to drive and very reliable.
I had one issue with the adaptive headlights, but that was covered under warranty.
I did not purchase an extended warranty and very happy with that decision as it would have been a waste of money.
Consumer reports rates this vehicle low for reliability and my experience says they got this one wrong.
Glad I did not trust their analysis.
My favorite feature is the handling of the vehicle.
Super handling in the turns.
Acceleration and braking are exceptional.
I really appreciate the 7 passenger seating capacity.
Note that the third row is only suitable for children 5 - 12, but it works for our family and is one of the primary reasons I purchased and kept the vehicle.
I wanted a sports car that had seating capacity.
Only improvement I'd suggest is providing an iPhone interface for controlling the NAV and iDrive features.
The iDrive interface is clumsy.
Strangely, agree with most reviews, + and -.
But overall, happy I bought it new.
Power is plenty. You pay at pump - never beats 14 MPG around town, 19 MPG highway.
Sometimes quirky shifts at low speeds, but never when you pay attention or hit the throttle - pure, magnificent pull. Totally trustworthy handling on most pavements of course.
"Heavier" feel than our '04 4.4i X5 Sport which I prefer - but wife likes '08 better. 20" OEM Dunlops great, but $$$ to replace every 14K.
Battery tends to go low; don't leave tailgate up! Worthless rear camera & NAV.
Minor oil gasket leaks, but garage floor is clean. Brakes squeal if you break too lightly, but perfect slowing & stopping.
Trusted power and agility.
Never found myself in a situation that had anything to do with the car. Maneuvers almost like a small sports car. Slight understeer just right. High enough seating to see around/over anything but truly huge SUVs and trucks (unfortunately we have a lot of those in AZ). Quiet. Comfortable. With 2nd row seats down, I can throw my road bicycle in without taking the front wheel off or leaving tire smudge on back of front seats. With 2nd row up, can actually handle all our luggage to A/P - that's saying something.
Very high day to day utility!
BMW should never bother with 3rd row seating! It will never compete with our Suburban for hauling people and stuff, nor should it try!
And X5's have notoriously soft rears, which you will find out if you so much as touch anything with it at any reverse speed, no matter how slow.
Some minor things persist even in the new X5's - like hard to set fan speed without actually looking down while driving (hey BMW, put the fan speed on the big knob and temp on the tiny buttons!).
Finally BMW, isn't there some design thing you can do to help keep black grit off the tailgate?
It gets filthy one day after a wash, both the '08 and '04.
Lastly, I agree that the running boards are more pain than gain.
I purchased a CPO with just 16k on the odometer three months ago, and waited to write this review.
Thus far, I fall more in love with it every day.
Parked in the driveway, with the 20" wheels, it has beautiful lines and exudes raw power.
Not the best in stop and start traffic, but once we hit the Pacific Coast Hwy or a twisty canyon, it attacks the road.
So confident driving on the freeway, especially in Sport mode.
Kids love the panoramic sunroof, and I always feel safe hauling them in the X5.
Not sure what the fuss is with iDrive- I love it.
Spend the time to learn and you will be amply rewarded.
First BMW, and I'm sold for life (previous cars include MB, Audi, and Land Rover).
My favorite thing: the awesome growl when you hit start!
Panoramic sunroof, iDrive, sport mode.
Paid a bit more for the BMW warranty- a must have.
Service is so seamless and pleasant, and I don't care what they do because it's covered and the car is returned sparkly clean with a smile...
Seats are comfortable, and love the super-solid steering wheel that gives confident control at any speed.
The backup camera is an embarrassment (especially at night) but I drove a 2012 5.0 X5 and it was greatly improved.
Nav is clunky, but gets the job done.