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BMW X5 pricing revealed

Dirt devil: The X5 looks good on or off road and its V8 engine provides plenty of grunt.

All out war on high end all-terrain wagons has been declared by BMW's X5

21 Jun 2000

BMW has announced Australian pricing for the X5 all-wheel drive wagon. About 200 of the $107,850 (including GST) 4.4-litre, V8-powered X5s will land before the end of the year with deliveries starting in November. Next year BMW Australia hopes to be able to source about 1500 examples, including a consignment of 3.0-litre, straight-six engined versions. A turbo-diesel, possibly a 3.0-litre six, is also under consideration, though BMW world-wide is yet to officially confirm such a model exists. A 4.0-litre V8 as used in European specification 7 Series sedans is also believed to be under development, complete with 567Nm of torque at just 1750rpm. The X5 is a five-seater which offers high-rise seating, a spacious, luxury interior and an aggressively styled body that looks more at home in the leafy suburbs than the back of Bourke. But a brief test drive across some broken terrain at the back of the Calder Park Thunderdome, outside Melbourne, showed the X5 can tackle more arduous terrain than simply an unsealed road. Though ground clearance may be perceived to be limited, the X5 can climb banks and uses the Land Rover developed, BMW-finessed Hill Descent Control traction system which activates the anti-lock brake system in steep downhill gradients. All told, there are seven traction control mechanisms fitted as standard to the vehicle. These are anti-lock brakes, dynamic brake control, dynamic stability control, automatic stability control, automatic differential brake, hill descent control and corner braking control. The drive is permanently split 32 per cent to the front and 68 per cent to the rear wheels. Transmission is via the five-speed Steptronic three-mode automatic as fitted to most current BMW cars. BMW has pitched the X5 into what it calls a new niche of Sports Activity Vehicles but in essence the pricing pitches the car against Range Rover, Lexus LX470, Mercedes-Benz M430 and probably the Audi Allroad when it arrives late in 2001 or early 2002. Standard equipment includes eight airbags, 18-inch alloys (19-inch alloys and sports suspension will be available as an option), leather upholstery with electrically adjustable memory seats, 10-speaker sound system with multi-stack CD player, automatic climate control, self-levelling rear air-suspension, park distance control, on-board monitor with TV (SatNav is a cheaper option than ever before) and aluminium running boards with non-slip grommets. Roof rails and front fog lights complete the package and there is an option of Xenon headlamps to light up the Outback. The X5 can accelerate to 100km/h in 7.5 seconds and has a top speed of 207km/h. The first shipment of 200 vehicles is pre-sold and orders taken by BMW dealers now will result in delivery in January or February next year. The X5 comes with a choice of 11 exterior colours that can be matched with a choice of one of five leather hides, from pastel green to mahogany.

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