At first sight the second generation X5 looks like it carries on with the main characteristics from its predecessor. The new model has been developed under the code-name E 70.

At first sight the second generation X5 looks like it carries on with the main characteristics from its predecessor. The new model has been developed under the code-name E 70.

However, looking closer, the main difference is that the newcomer is about 16 cm longer and 6 cm wider than the current model. As a result, there is enough room provided for a third row of seats much like all the other modern luxury off-roaders. The ability for the X5 to accommodate up to seven passengers has become a must-have feature to stay competitive. Also the dashboard of BMW’s biggest off-roader has been revised to incorporate all new technical gadgets like a radar governed cruise control and BMW’s first night vision. An evolution of BMW’s x-Drive AWD system is in place, plus advanced wheel-by-wheel traction control.

Power is expected to come from two revamped diesel engines, a 3.0 litre six cylinder with 231 HP and a 4.5 litre V8 with 330 HP and from gasoline engines starting with a 3.0 litre six cylinder producing 258 HP up to a new V8 5.0 litre with 367 HP.

The new X5’s release is scheduled for October 2006, an M-version could be in the pipeline for later on.

The photos are showing: BMW X5 prototypes photographed recently in the US Southwest

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