2017 BMW X5 Review
Pros & Cons
- Strong performance from every model
- Luxurious and comfortable cabin that lives up to its price tag
- A long list of optional features allows for a wide range of customization
- oOtional diesel engine is as potent as it is efficient
- Less legroom in the second row compared to some of its competitors
- optional third-row seats are tight even for children
Edmunds' Expert Review
The 2017 BMW X5 distinguishes itself from competing SUVs by delivering excellent handling that inspires confidence no matter what kind of driving you do. As a result, the ride quality is a bit stiffer than that of rivals and can feel a little busy on broken pavement, but at no time does it feel objectionably firm. For the smoothest ride, go with the standard wheel and tire combinations instead of the larger options. Road and wind noise is more prevalent than you'd expect for the class but not intrusive.
For the vast majority of drivers, the base 35i six-cylinder engine provides more than enough power. Upgrading to the xDrive50i's V8 will probably feel like overkill for all but the most power-hungry drivers, and at that point, the high-performance X5 M is a more intriguing alternative. We're more partial to the xDrive35d's diesel powerplant that delivers a healthy wallop of torque for authoritative acceleration while still returning admirable fuel efficiency.
If you've been in any current BMW vehicle, the look, feel and function of the 2017 X5 will be very familiar, and that's a good thing. High-quality materials abound, and everything gives the impression of top-notch build quality. The standard seats are well shaped and appropriately cushioned for long-distance comfort. The available 16-way multicontour seats are some of the most comfortable in any car. Second-row seats are also comfortable, although there's slightly less legroom compared with some direct competitors. The same goes for the optional third row; it is cramped even for children.
Primary driver controls and gauges are thoughtfully placed and easy to read and operate. BMW's iDrive control interface takes some getting used to, but in short time the menus become second nature, aided by the touchpad on the controller dial that accepts handwritten inputs.
Cargo capacity is slightly above average for the class, with 35.8 cubic feet of space behind the second row and 76.7 cubic feet with those seats folded. The xDrive40e's battery pack reduces that volume slightly to 34.2 and 72.5 cubic feet, respectively. The X5 also gets points for its two-section power liftgate with its fold-down lower section that provides a handy place to sit for tailgating as well as assisting in loading bulky cargo.