The new third-generation BMW X5 will be sold with 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel power and optional rear-wheel drive in a move that endows the SUV with claimed fuel consumption of more than 50mpg and CO2 emissions of 149g/km. The 2013 BMW X5 has made its public debut at the Frankfurt motor show today.
The decision to expand the choice of engines to include a four-cylinder unit mirrors the move made by Mercedes-Benz with its latest M-class. However, BMW's decision to offer rear-wheel drive represents a first in the hotly contested luxury SUV ranks.
Developed under the internal codename F15, the new X5 has been progressed in a typically evolutionary approach that sees it retain its upright profile and traditional features such as its two-piece tailgate. Distinguishing touches include a bolder front end with a more prominent kidney grille and LED-imbued headlamps that butt up against the chrome surround of the grille.
A heavily contoured bumper, which features so-called air curtain ducts on the lower outer edges, helps to channel air through the front wheel houses to an 'air blade' duct sited behind the front wheel arches. The design also features on the recently introduced 3-series GT.
Overall, the new SUV receives a more structured look than its predecessor, with greater contouring within the bonnet, a more pronounced shoulder line and an added feature line within the lower section of the doors to reduce visual bulk. A tall glasshouse remains a key design feature and follows on from the original E53 model launched in 1999 and the second-generation E70 model in 2008.
At 4886mm in length, 1938mm in width and 1762mm in height, the new X5 is 32mm longer, 5mm wider and 14mm taller than its predecessor. It shares its 2933mm wheelbase with the second-generation X5 but the tracks have been shortened by 4mm both front and rear to 1640mm and 1646mm, endowing it with a slightly smaller footprint.