2008 BMW X5 Long Term Road Test

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2008 BMW X5 4.8i: Track Testing (Video Added)

March 18, 2008

BMW X5 on the Skidpad -- Photo by James Riswick

Most SUVs take to our track like I would take to attending a taping of "Dancing with the Stars." Actually, on second thought I don't think it's possible for an automobile to perform ritual suicide. Anyway, the BMW X5 has always been a different animal, with better-than-the-pack handling and an overall character tuned definitively for the road. The numbers our long-term X5 generated at the track back that up, but they are far from the abilities of a 5 Series wagon.

For comparison, the slalom and skidpad numbers are virtually identical to those of the last Acura MDX we tested, but a fair bit better than our long-term Cadillac SRX. The X5 brakes and acceleratesbetter than both, although with its V8, the latter comes as no surprise. I'm eager to see how the new Infiniti FX50 will stack up when it arrives in our garage shortly.

UPDATE: Turns out I have a horrible memory and we actually did get video that day (we just did it after testing). Because of certain technical issues, I've dropped in the video links below rather than embedding video. Forgive me.

James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 2,035 miles

ACCELERATION
0-30 -
2.6 seconds
0-45 - 4.8 seconds
0-60 - 7.1 seconds
0-75 - 10.5 seconds
1/4 mile - 15.4 seconds @ 92.3 mph

VIDEO

Senior Road Test Editor Josh Jacquot: "Although frustrating, at first I like the X5's new shifter ... Forward for downshifts, backward for upshifts ... just like it should be. Engine is smooth and sounds great, but wouldn't be half as impressive with one less gear."

BRAKING
60-0 -
123 feet
30-0 - 31 feet

VIDEO

Jacquot: "These are impressive braking numbers -- especially for a non Sport Package X5. Pedal feel and response remained consistent throughout."

SKIDPAD
.82g

VIDEO

Jacquot: "Heavy steering is very noticeable on skidpad as well as in slow maneuvering."

SLALOM
62.9 mph

VIDEO

Jacquot: "Stability control is always on, but works well. Approach the X5's limits carefully without blowing through them and it seems BMW's stability control is very effective at achieving the driver's goals. It goes where it's pointed. Get stupid, however, and all is lost to the electronics and physics."

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