Comparing it with the E53 and the E70 would be like measuring the ferocity of an angry chicken to that of a Velociraptor, so I'm not going to do that. Instead, I decided to make a step-by-step comparison between the F15, the X5 that directly precedes the recently unveiled G05.
This decision may seem unethical from some points of view, primarily since the previous X5 was in itself an evolution of the E70, with different engines and technology features engulfed in a nearly identical body. All-New Architecture
That's right, although BMW calls the 2019 BMW X5 (G05) “a fourth generation,” the carmaker is somewhat wrong because the third generation of the X5 was more like a second and a half.
The latest X5 is therefore all-new from the ground up, using BMW's new Cluster Architecture (CLAR), which is shared with other modern models like the 7 Series (G11), 5 Series (G30) and even its smaller brother, the X3 (G01).
The new platform is obviously modular and thus can accommodate a higher range of propulsions methods, including a much improved plug-in hybrid, twin-turbo V8s or a quad-turbo inline-six. Although the car is much bigger on all sides, the car's mass has decreased considerably.All-Wheel Steering
Called Integral Active Steering in BMW speak, the system uses a control device that measures factors like wheel speed, vehicle speed and steering angle to make the rear wheels turn up to a maximum of three degrees.
At up to 60 kph (37 mph), the rear wheels wheel steer in opposing directions to the front ones to reduce the car's turning circle with up to a meter, despite an increased wheelbase. At speeds over 60 kph, the rear wheels will turn in the same direction as the front ones to improve the X5's highway stability, for example, since the car will effectively glide from one lane to another instead of swerving. Three Choices of Suspension
A steel coil springs suspension is offered as standard, but those who want more comfort can opt for the Adaptive M Suspension, which lets you pick the harshness of the vertical movement of the wheels by simply choosing a driving mode.
Those who want the best in terms of driving comfort will be happy to find out that a 2-axle air suspension is finally available for the mid-size SUV. Since the X5 was the last car in its segment to stubbornly refuse to offer this type of technology, the G05 will definitely appeal to a much wider range of clients for this reason alone. First BMW Available with 22-inch Wheels… or Studded Tires
Considering the tire and wheel combo, with minuscule side walls, and also the fact that the car was only equipped with the Adaptive Suspension, not the one with air struts, the comfort levels were actually more than decent. Plus, the biggest wheels also fill the wheel arches perfectly, so, despite the way 22-inch sounds, I'd actually recommend them for exclusive on-road use.
On the other hand, the new X5 can also be equipped for off-road use for the first time in history, and I'm not even talking about unpaved roads and sidewalk curbs but real off-road situations. If you go for the 2-axle air suspension and the xOffroad Package, BMW will gladly sell you 20-inch wheels with all-terrain tires. Don't tell anyone I said it since it's not exactly official yet, but studded tires may also be fitted.Panoramic Glass Roof with Integrated LED Lighting
Apart from opening and closing and/or letting the sun in from above, the Sky Lounge thingy makes a world of difference at night, especially if your car is filled with passengers. Thanks to a graphic imprinted directly on the glass roof itself, light emitted from side-mounted LED modules is directed onto the roof's interior surface, mimicking a starry sky even when there are clouds outside. M-Sport Differential from the M5
You see, this is no run-of-the-mill LSD, but one taken straight out of the mighty M5 (F90), which as many of you know can play with 625 horsepower and 750 Nm (553 lb-ft) sent to either all four or just the rear tires.
On the new X5, the M Sport Differential can vary up to 1,500 Nm (1,106 lb-ft) of torque without going up in smoke and can distribute all the engine's torque to one single rear wheel if needed. Combined with the Integral Active Steering system, you can guess that we're talking about serious sideways G numbers when the situations demands. BMW Live Cockpit and iDrive 7.0
A humongous center display is almost connected from the design point of view to the one behind the steering wheel, and it's much more customizable. Up to ten pages in the main menu of iDrive 7.0 can be configured individually, and page layouts with two, three or four widgets can be displayed at the same time. You can check the current weather in real time and even the latest news apart from the navigation map or various driving information data.
Apart from the iDrive controller, you can now use touch, gesture controls and voice commands to control the infotainment system. By far the coolest part is that you can configure the “Hey BMW” voice command to something completely different, such as, for example, “Hey Mercedes” if you feel like it.Swarovski Crystal Gear Shifter and Buttons
During the day it looks a bit kitschy if you ask me, especially since there is no objective reason to use Swarovski crystals instead of any other translucent material, but once the sun goes down it starts looking like it's worth every penny.
The gear shifter is illuminated from the interior, and together with the LED ambient lighting, it can create a rather post atmosphere that is totally antithetic with the butch character of the new X5.Reversing Assistant
Say, for example, that you decide to not trust your navigation system and proceed to drive in an unknown European town filled with sinuous one way streets that are packed with parked cars on either side. After you find yourself face to face with an oncoming car, you suddenly realize why all the cars on the sides of the road were parked with their front ends toward the direction you were coming from.
Congratulations, you've now realized that the Reversing Assistant is not just a gimmick to impress friends and SOs for the first week after you buy the car, but will actually get you out of a very tight spot, literally and figuratively.
As it happens, the X5 (G05) always records the last 50 meters (55 yards) driven at speeds under 35 kph (22 mph). Now all you have to do is get the car into reverse, select the Reverse Assistant by pressing on the corresponding option in the central display and off you go. By that, I mean that you'll only need to take care of the brakes, because the car will automatically drive in reverse on its own, mirroring the exact route that you drove forward. It's almost magical to experience it for the first time.