X5bred to suc­ceed

BMW’s up­dated X5 im­proves an SUV al­ready at the top of its class, writes Paul Gover

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Road Test -

IT’S im­por­tant to make reg­u­lar re­turns and re-runs with bench­mark cars in Aus­tralian show­rooms. So here we are with the 2010 update of the BMW X5, the car that’s been top of the pres­tige SUV pack since it landed in Aus­tralia. The lat­est tweaks are a mid-life over­haul, just like the VEII Com­modore, and, just like the Holden hero, BMW has con­cen­trated on ef­fi­ciency. It’s also fo­cused on keep­ing an edge over ev­ery­thing from the Audi Q5 to the Benz ML, the new Porsche Cayenne and the muchim­proved Range Rover Sport.

Changes to the X5 in­clude three new mod­els — xDrive35i, X5 xDrive40d and flag­ship X5 xDrive50i — im­proved en­gines with more power torque, bet­ter fuel econ­omy and more em­pha­sis on the Sport pack­age which has been pop­u­lar with so many X5 buy­ers.

‘‘We have given the car the high­est stan­dard spec­i­fi­ca­tion in the seg­ment. Com­bined with its on-road per­for­mance, and a range of fea­tures that are not of­fered by our com­peti­tors, the BMW X5 looks set to con­tinue its suc­cess story,’’ BMW Aus­tralia boss, Stavros Yal­louridis, says.

Value

THE start­ing price of $92,100 looks pretty good, but that’s for the ba­sic 3-litre diesel and you can eas­ily run the X5 up to $133,400 — bot­tom line for the new 50i Sport — or even more for the M-built model. And BMW op­tions are al­ways there to en­tice, with ev­ery­thing from Sport packs to third-row seats, all sorts of light choices, leather and wood, and on and on and on.

Max­imis­ing value in any BMW is about pick­ing the right model and stay­ing close to the stan­dard spec­i­fi­ca­tion.

Look­ing at some of its ri­vals, and con­cen­trat­ing on the mid-range 40d which looks to be the po­ten­tial best­seller, the BMW lines up well

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