When it comes to luxury SUVs, there are a few companies to choose from including Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Lexus and BMW. One of BMW’s most technologically advanced SUVs is the 4th generation X5 SUV.
The 2019 BMW X5 takes inspiration from more than 20 years of X5 sales (of which the company has sold 2.2 million worldwide). The BMW X5 I tested of the xDrive 40i model, which has a six-cylinder inline engine which comes with 335 hp and can go from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.5 seconds.
The front of the 2019 X5 has the company’s signature kidney grills, Adaptive LED headlights. The ride is fairly smooth and it can easily handle all terrains you throw at it.
Both the front and rear seats of the 2019 X5 have lots of room with plenty of legroom and headspace. The trunk has lots of space and you can get even more with the rear seats down. One cool feature is that the trunk area has a cover that is motorized and will automatically open up when you’re parked and you leave the vehicle.
There’s no need to mess with manually open the cover and you can control it via the buttons at the side of the trunk.
Just like other BMWs, the 2019 X5 comes with a 12.3-inch fully-digital instrumental cluster display and centre infotainment display that is also 12.3-inches and BMW’s Live Cockpit Professional system which has the seventh generation version of BMW iDrive.
The iDrive system can be controlled via the iDrive controller or via the touchscreen. Navigating iDrive is fairly simple but BMW made some changes to the actual look of the interface but the functionality is still the same. The model of the 2019 X5 I tested had a wireless charging pad, USB port for Apple CarPlay (sadly no Android Auto).
In the storage compartment between the driver and passenger seats, there is a USB-C port and there are additional USB-C ports for the rear seats behind each front seat.
The 2019 X5 I drove cam equipped with the Harman Kardon Sound System which sounded great and can get fairly loud.
The vehicle also came with a heads-up display for the driver that shows you your speed, navigation and whether your advanced cruise control and lane keep assist is active.
The 2019 X5 can be equipped with a number of tech and safety features. One is the Advanced Driver Assistance Package which includes Steering and Lane Control and Lane Keep Assistant to help you stay between the lines, Evasion Assist, Cross Traffic Alert. It also included Active Cruise Control with Stop and Go, which allows you to set a certain speed and if another car comes in front of you, your vehicle will slow down.
To use the Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Keep Assistant, it just takes one button (for each) on the left side of the steering wheel. And you can easily change your set cruise control speed using the small toggle below the buttons.
The vehicle also came with something called Parking Assistant Plus with Surround View which basically gives you a 360-degree view of your vehicle when reversing. It even creates a 3D model based on GPS location.
The 2019 BMW X5 is fairly expensive and starts at about $71,500 CAD. If you want any of the features I tested, you’ll have to pay extra for it.
- Premium Enhanced Package – $9,000 CAD
- Remote Engine Start
- Universal Remote Control
- Comfort Access
- Soft Close Doors
- Side Sunshades
- Heated and Cooled Cupholders
- Comfort Seats, Front
- Travel and Comfort System
- Seat Heating, Front and Rear
- Auto 4-Zone Climate Control
- BMW Laserlight Headlights
- Parking Assistant Plus w/Surround View
- Head-Up Display
- SiriusXM Satellite Radio Tuner
- Harman Kardon Sound System
- Wireless Charging with Extended Bluetooth and USB WiFi Hotspot
- M Sport Package – $3,000 CAD
- M Sport Exhaust System
- 21″ M Light Alloy Wheels, Y-Spoke 741M, Bicolour, Performance RFT (21×9.5, 275/40 R21 front and 21×10.5, 315/35 R21 rear)
- M Sport Brakes
- Adaptive 2-axle air suspension
- M Sport Package
- Without Exterior Lines Designation
- High Gloss Black Roof Rails
- M Leather Steering Wheel
- M Aerodynamics Package
- High-Gloss Shadow Line
- Advanced Driving Assistant Package – $2,000 CAD
- Traffic Jam Assistant
- Driving Assistant Professional
- Steering and Lane Control
- Evasion Assist
- Cross Traffic Alert (Front)
- Active Cruise Control with Stop and Go Lane Keep Assistant
- Lane Keep Assist
- Standalone options
- Night Vision with Pedestrian Detection – $2,500 CAD
- Luggage Compartment Package – $500 CAD
- Piano Black Wood Trim with Satin Chrome Highlight – $400 CAD
- BMW Display Key – $300 CAD
The total cost of the 2019 BMW X5 I tested was $89,200 CAD.
Software & Connectivity
The 2019 BMW X5 comes with the 7th generation version of the company’s iDrive system. It improves upon the previous version of iDrive but also changes some things. Most of the features of iDrive hasn’t changed but they’ve changed the way the actual system looks.
The main menu is a bit harder to navigate, especially with the iDrive controller. Instead of just rotating and then pressing in to select an option. You also have to shift between different areas of the screen to then start controlling that.
The left side of the screen has your menu buttons such as Media, Communications, Navigation, Car and Apps. Media is where you’ll find your audio inputs such as Bluetooth, Radio etc.
Navigation is where you’ll find maps and enter destinations. Map quality has always been a strong point of BMW’s iDrive, they’re crisp and has lots of detail and smooth to move around.
Communication is where you’ll find your phonebook, texts and whatnot. Car is where you’ll be able to see details and settings about your X5.
Apps are where you’ll be able to connect to BMW Concierge, weather and more. As mentioned earlier the 2019 X5 comes with Apple CarPlay, which is great for iOS users but Android users are left in the dust.
In addition to Apple CarPlay, you have the ability to remotely control your X5 using the BMW Connected app which allows you to control vehicle functions such as unlock/lock, remote start and send destinations. The new BMW Connected platform also allows you to connect your BMW to Amazon Alexa or the Google Assistant.
Unfortunately, since BMW has been primarily iPhone-centric, you can only download the BMW Connected app on your iOS device. There is an Android version of the app but it’s currently not available on the Canadian Google Play Store.
Voice control in the 2019 X5 also works well. To use it, all you have to do is press the microphone button on the steering wheel. BMW’s voice recognition system works well, you can say a whole address without needing to say it in parts and you can even use voice control to send messages or make calls. You can access your phone’s voice assistant by holding down the microphone button.
Overall the new BMW X5 for 2019 is a nice vehicle that comes with lots of tech and safety features (at an additional cost).
- iDrive can be controlled via the touchscreen or the controller
- Voice control works every time
- Maps are crisp and detailed
- Driver Assistant features like Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Keep Assist work well
- Lots of cargo space
- 360 camera is a nice feature to have
- No Android Auto
- BMW Connected app is iOS only (at least in Canada)
- Lots of features come at an additional cost
- iDrive 7 isn’t slightly harder to navigate than the previous version