BMW presents updated X5 PHEV

BMW has unveiled model updates for its X5 and X6 SUV models, which will be launched worldwide in April 2023. In the course of the updates, the drive system for the plug-in hybrid variant of the X5 has also been renewed – the X6 will not be offered as a PHEV.

This now bears the designation X5 xDrive50e (previously it was code number 45) and combines the combustion engine (still an in-line six-cylinder) with a new e-machine, whose output increases by 62 kW to 145 kW compared to that in the predecessor. According to BMW, an “innovative pre-ratio”, which increases the effective torque applied to the engine-side transmission input to up to 450 Nm, should contribute “to a particularly spontaneous power delivery”. The petrol engine also increases by 20 to 230 kW. The system output of the plug-in hybrid climbs by 70 to 360 kW (with a temporary boost).

The battery has also been updated: the usable energy content has been increased by almost 25 per cent to 25.7 kWh compared to the predecessor. The electric range of the new X5 xDrive50e is 94 to 110 kilometres according to WLTP. Thanks to a new Combined Charging Unit, the charging power is doubled, but it remains at a manageable 7.4 kW. Even after the technology update, BMW does not offer AC charging with 11 kW or even DC charging like the plug-in hybrid Mercedes GLE, which was also recently revised.

For the sake of completeness, it should be mentioned that the other engine options are also all electrified. The six-cylinder diesel, six-cylinder petrol and also the V8 all use a 48-volt hybrid system. This provides an additional nine kilowatts of drive power.

BMW has not only used the model update for changes under the sheet metal, but the bodywork has also been adapted somewhat. Especially at the front, the X5 has been somewhat adapted to the larger X7, the kidney grille typical of the brand is visually more present (which is also optionally available with “waterfall lighting” called ‘Iconic Glow’). The headlights are now 35 millimetres flatter, the arrow-shaped LED daytime running lights also function as turn signals. However, BMW has dispensed with the two-part headlights of the X7 and the 7 Series.

There is probably a simple reason why the X6 SUV coupé is not also offered with the plug-in hybrid: With the XM Hybrid, BMW M offers a similarly sized SUV coupé, albeit with a different orientation and polarising design. The X5, X6 and XM are built at BMW’s Spartanburg plant in South Carolina. BMW has not yet published prices for the X5 xDrive50e.


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