2008 BMW X5 4.8i: Automatic Interior Venting
May 30, 2008
I'm sure everybody has experienced the unpleasantness of getting into a parked car that's been sitting out on a hot summer day. For the X5, BMW offers an iDrive-based feature to help alleviate the unpleasantness.
You can program the X5 to turn on its climate control fan (to draw in fresh air) at a set time. For example: say you've gone shopping at the mall and know you'll be done about 5 p.m... You can set the fan to turn on at 4:35 p.m. so that the interior will be much cooler when you get back.
Though I wasn't able to fully test the effectiveness of the feature, it does indeed blow low-speed air through the vents when activated.
It occurred to me that this is a feature that only becomes possible when a car has a control interface as powerful as iDrive. It also occured to me that you're not exactly out of luck if your car doesn't have automatic venting -- just crack open the windows an inch.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor