2018 BMW X5 M Review
Edmunds expert review
The 2018 BMW X5 M handles everyday SUV duty with comfort, style and refinement. It's also ridiculously fast and cuts winding roads like a knife. How fast? It dashes from zero to 60 mph in 4 seconds flat, a shade faster than BMW's iconic M4 sport coupe. Now wondering whether you need an SUV that makes more than 500 horsepower or reaches a top speed of 160 mph misses the point. It's best to just marvel at a machine that can take you for both a sedate run to Costco, or to county jail for excessive speed, with such ease.
But the X5 M isn't just about making an SUV out of a high-performance sport sedan. Its roomy cabin is richly appointed with quality leather and user-friendly technology; the tall ride height gives a commanding view of the road; and the cargo area, while not cavernous, ranks with those of other SUVs in its class. Let this assuage any feelings of frivolous indulgence if you're considering the X5 M as a family car.
That's not to say it's the best choice, however. Given its performance bias, the X5 M's suspension is tuned firm for superb handling. It's not rock hard, but some passengers will notice. The interior leaks more wind and road noise than SUVs at this price should. There's no third-row seat, and the X5 M costs significantly more than the top "regular" X5 model, the X5 xDrive50i. But if you like cars that breathe fire and come nearly loaded (this being a BMW, there are still plenty of costly options available), the X5 M is one of the best picks in its class.
What's new for 2018
Trim levels & features
The 2018 BMW X5 M is a high-performance midsize luxury SUV with seating for five. It's offered in a single trim level. As with any BMW, a bundle of options offer further personalization. Several are grouped into the useful Executive package, while most are stand-alone items.
The X5 M is powered by a turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine (567 hp, 553 pound-feet of torque) paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.
Standard features include 21-inch wheels, high-performance tires, adaptive suspension dampers, a rear air suspension, a panoramic sunroof, roof rails, front and rear parking sensors, a power liftgate, adaptive headlights, keyless entry and adaptive cruise control.
Interior highlights include heated front seats, 40/20/40-split folding rear seatbacks, four-zone climate control, a leather-wrapped dash, ambient cabin lighting, aluminum trim accents and a rearview camera.
Finally, standard tech features include a navigation system with a 10.2-inch touchscreen display with a touchpad-equipped controller, Bluetooth phone and audio, a 16-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, satellite and HD radio, and BMW's umbrella of smartphone-integrated connected services called Connected Drive.
Considering all that standard equipment, the X5 M has a short options list. The Executive package includes adaptive LED headlights, power-closing doors, a heated steering wheel, rear side window shades, a head-up information display, wireless smartphone charging and a Wi-Fi hotspot. A suite of driver safety features also comes with the package and includes forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warning, automatic high beams, surround-view cameras and a self-parking system.
Stand-alone options include 20-inch wheels, aluminum-look exterior trim, a 16-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system, Apple CarPlay compatibility, night vision with pedestrian detection, and a rear-seat entertainment system with dual screens.
Ease of use
Getting in/getting out
Audio & navigation
Edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.