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E53 X5 Series II

1 Jan 2004

BMW changed to the lighter and more efficient electronic X-drive 4WD system that promised better off-road traction when it came to facelift time for its phenomenally successful X5.

The exterior changes were subtle – new headlights, bonnet, grille, bumpers, tail-lights and cabin trim.

The base X5 3.0i retained its 170kW/300Nm 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine and five-speed automatic transmission, but gained a six-speed manual gearbox – as did the all-new 3.0-litre turbo-diesel 3.0d, the star of the revised X5.

Now it offered 150kW and 480Nm of power and torque, as well as a six-speed automatic gearbox courtesy of ZF.

This transmission, in turn, was shared with the double-VANOS Valvetronic 4.4-litre V8 in the 4.4i, making the most of the 235kW and 440Nm on offer.

BMW said the X5 4.4i managed to go from rest to 100km/h in 7.0 seconds, on the way to a 210km/h maximum.

By comparison the 3.0d achieved the same top speed and the 0-100km/h sprint in 8.8s thanks to the vast torque on offer – all the while with an 8.6L/100km capability (V8: 13.1L/100km).

Meanwhile the 4.6is was replaced by the 4.8is from August ’03, powered by a 265kW/490Nm 4.8-litre V8 tied to a six-speed automatic gearbox.

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