2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i Review

Introduced a few years back for the 2012 model year, the BMW X5 xDrive35i is an all-wheel drive SUV which offers owners a more engaging drive than most of the competition. Today it’s still one of the most technologically advanced SUV’s on the market, which also means that it’s one of the safest. Let’s take a look at exactly what BMW has to offer with the 35i.

Key Figures

3L Inline 6 Cylinder Engine producing 300HP @ 5,800RPM

Automatic Transmission

5 Door SUV Configuration

16MPG City, 23MPG Highway

Was Released in 12 Colors, with 7 Interior Color Options


If you’re familiar with any of BMW’s SUVs then you will immediately feel at home with the looks of the BMW X5 xDrive35i. It’s a fairly unassuming car, even for its size, and it keeps the traditional BMW grill design with subtle angles across the bodywork. This vehicle gives off the typical BMW sense of class but doesn’t offer anything dazzlingly flashy. If you’re looking for a head turning SUV, this might not be the vehicle for you, however if you want understated elegance then the X5 xDrive35i could be your perfect SUV.

Who’s it For?

If you’re looking for a car based on fuel economy alone then you could do far better than the X5. Fuel economy is a tradeoff with any SUV, simply because they all weigh in on the heavier side. In saying that, 23MPG on the highway and 16MPG is not too bad of a compromise for something this size.

If you have a large or growing family then the X5 would make a lot of sense. It’s an all-purpose car, meaning that you could easily make the morning school run, and then use the X5 for business meetings throughout the day. You could even head out for dinner or drinks later in the night and the xDrive35i will look the part in every situation. It’s a serious car for discerning owners, and it offers some real driving performance to complement the practicality of a 5 door SUV.

How does it Perform?

The 2012 BMW X5 xDrive35i will please owners who are used to sedans or even smaller sports cars. Taking some cues from the X5 M, the 35i gives real feedback and response. This is something that is going to be a selling point for many, and a turn off for others. SUV’s don’t typically try to offer a fully involved driving experience. The trend in the industry is to make these vehicles almost too easy to drive. Be warned that BMW hasn’t taken this approach.

You can have some fun driving it, and you will also have all of the benefits of state of the art technology like corner breaking, and even electronic torque vectoring. All of the electronics aim to keep the car firmly planted on the road in any driving condition, and they do a fantastic job.

All of the Extras

The interior follows typical BMW standards with plush and supportive seats, luxury trim, and high end electronics like the integrated Google search and social networking systems. Gadget lovers will be very pleased with all of the extra bells and whistles in the BMW X5 xDrive35i

Overall it’s an impressive SUV that is still as much of a worthwhile purchase in 2015 as it was when it was first released. Average MPG figures are compensated for with a fun and involved driving experience, advanced electronic safety features, and a luxurious and well equipped interior cabin.