BMW's entry into the SUV market. The X5 was dubbed a Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) which the marketing people defined as a "high-performance vehicle built to enhance high-performance lifestyles". What the meant was that instead of being utility-based, the X5 was built to deliver the same BMW-quality driving criteria as their popular sports sedans.

The X5 has the same 4.4 litre V8 engine as the 540i and 740i with an option for a 3.0 litre engine. The former accelerates 0-100 km/h in about 8.3 seconds and the latter does the same in 7.9 seconds.

X5 3.0i Specs

Engine: 3.0 litre DOHC, I-6, 24V with Double VANOS
Horsepower: 225 @ 5900
Torque: 214 @ 3500
Wheelbase: 2820 nm
Overall Length: 4667 mm
Curb Weight: 2050 kg

Standard features include Dynamic Stability Control, heated leather seats, Xenon headlights, automatic climate control, 17" 5 spoke style alloy wheels, all-wheel drive, Dynamic Brake Control, Hill Descent Control.

X5 4.4i Specs

Engine: 4.4 litre DOHC, V8, 32V with VANOS
Horsepower: 282 @ 5400
Torque: 324 @ 3600
Wheelbase: 2820 mm
Overall Length: 4667 mm
Curb Weight: 2175 kg

Standard features as above and also including glass sunroof, 18" 5 spoke style alloy wheels, wood trim.

Apparently, this vehicle was selected by the Institute for Highway Safety as the "Best Pick" over the competition in crash tests.

You may realize now that I'm a big fan of BMW...I've got a Z3 and a 528i myself and I love them!