BMW has been toying with us, showing off various plug-in hybrid electric vehicles at the auto shows, but could the BMW X5 eDrive be the first to make it off the production lines?
The BMW X5 eDrive was revealed at last year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. The plug-in hybrid SUV borrows heavily from the BMW i3 and i8, which have been in development alongside it. Given that BMW says the X5 eDrive accelerates from zero to sixty miles per hour in under seven seconds, it’s clear that the BMW i8‘s supercar-style power systems have had a lot to show in the X5’s electric powertrain.
The BMW X5 eDrive, which should be showing again, in November, at the Los Angeles Auto Show, uses a slightly-modified version of an existing 2.0ℓ turbocharged i4 engines, paired with a 70 kW electric motor. Total output of the hybrid powertrain is estimated at 270 hp and 332 lb•ft. For comparison, the current BMW X5 xDrive35i uses a 3.0ℓ turbocharged i6, which generates 32 hp more, but 37 lb•ft less torque.
In spite of its weight, better than 5,000 lb, and performance characteristics, the BMW X5 eDrive drives as a BMW should. Acceleration is powerful and smooth, especially in eDrive mode, and the car is equipped with all the luxury technology and comfort features you’d expect. With up to 18 miles pure electric range, this could be attractive to drivers with short commutes, especially the up-and-coming city executive. Despite the short EV-only range, fuel economy for this 5,000+ lb SUV is estimated at an astonishing 62 mpg (miles per gallon) combined!