With the unveiling of the 2021 plug-in hybrid model of the X5, BMW is all set to release the full 2021 line-up of the BMW X5. The 2021 BMW X5 is expected to offer minor revisions and updates. However, it shall continue to be the driver-focused car that it has always been. The addition of the hybrid model will only increase its appeal in the Electric vehicle market.

The world seems to have moved on from the days when SUVs were only about being big and brawny. Thanks to performance-oriented SUVs such as the BMW X5 which is rumored to receive some updates for the 2021 model year. Yes, the 2021 BMW X5 is expected to be out soon and will only spice up the segment with its new trims and updates. 

Introduced in 1999, the X5 was BMW’s first SUV and it offered BMW’s xDrive all-wheel-drive system. In 2009 the X5 joined BMW’s “M” trim line-up with its performance-based version. Also, it is no secret that the X5 shares its underpinnings with the BMW 5 Series performance luxury sedan. Hence BMW even went ahead and called it a Sports Activity Vehicle instead of a Sports Utility Vehicle. 

The 2021 BMW X5 is expected to come with minor changes


Fast forward to 2020, the 2021 BMW X5 is expected to bring much more to the table compared to its predecessor and rivals. Talking about rivals, the X5 goes up against luxury SUVs such as the Acura MDX, Land Rover Discovery, and Maserati Levante. BMW has already showcased and launched new plug-in hybrid trim which will keep it more up to date with the market trends. But there are more changes expected with the 2021 model, hence its time to have a look at what the 2021 BMW X5 might have in store for us.

Trims and prices

For the 2021 BMW X5, the trim line-up is more or less going to be the same. The base model shall remain the sDrive40i which is only offered in a rear-wheel-drive setup and hence is supposed to be used strictly under urban environments. In terms of performance, however, it remains at par with the other trims. The next trim is the xDriver40i which offers an all-wheel-drive system and is not very different in terms of features when compared to the base trim. 













Key Features

Auto Start-Stop

Adds/Upgrades to Sdrive40i

Adds/Upgrades to Xdrive40i


Adaptive LED Headlamps

All the Features in sDrive40i trim added and:

19" V Spoke light-alloy wheels, style 734 with all-season run-flat tires



Four Distinctive Driving modes

Servotronic Power Steering Assist

Vernasca leather upholstery



Dynamic Damper Control

xDrive All-Wheel Drive System

Harman Kardon 16-speaker system 


Remote Software Upgrade

16-way power front sport seats

Dynamic Cruise Control



Power Adjustable Steering Column

Adaptive LED Headlights


Automatic 4-zone climate control



Power Tailgate

Dynamic Damper Control


Satin Aluminum exterior trim



3-stage heated front seats

Servotronic power-steering assist


High-gloss black Aero Blades


The xDrive50i being the top of the line trim offered much more and provides a proper posh feel on the inside. Apart from these trims, BMW has introduced a new trim for the 2021 line-up which is the plug-in hybrid model called the xDrive45e. However, the official spec sheet is not available as yet from BMW.

Presently, the prices for the 2021 X5 trims are unavailable but are expected to remain the same as 2020 models. The MSRP of the sDrive40i, xDrive40i and xDrive50i will most likely remain $58,900, $61,200 and $76,150 respectively.

Engine and Performance

The 2021 BMW X5 will be getting the same engine options as of the 2020 line-up because of it being a carryover model. However, it is no bad news as all powertrain options are adequate enough to put a smile on your face one you jab on to that throttle pedal. 

Currently, the sDrive40i and the xDrive40i get a 335-hp turbocharged inline-six engine with the xDrive40 offering an AWD. On the other hand, the xDrive50i offers a mighty 456-hp twin-turbocharged V-8 mill. Talking about performance the sDrive40i can do 0-60 mph sprint in 5.2 seconds while the xDrive40i is just 0.1 seconds slower than the base model.

On the other hand, the X5 xDrive50i slams the 0-60 mph timing in just 4.6 seconds which is quite impressive for a car of its size. Both the engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission which offers slick and quick shifts in any given situation.


2021 BMW X5 sDrive40i

2020 Acura MDX SH-AWD

2020 Land Rover Discovery

2020 Maserati Levante







Turbo Inline-6 3.0-liter

Premium unleaded V6 3.5-liter

Supercharged V6 3.0-liter

Twin-turbo V6 3.0-liter







Automatic 8-speed

Automatic 9-speed

Automatic 8-speed

Automatic 8-speed

Horsepower (hp@rpm)










For the 2021 line-up, the newest addition is the plug-in hybrid version which is called the 45e xDrive PHEV.  It will get a 3.0-liter, six-cylinder gas-powered engine coupled to a 24-kWh battery pack. The combined power output of the setup is 389 hp and 443 pound-feet of torque. It will come mated to an eight-speed Steptronic AT and will be offered in AWD setup.

Since its major overhaul, the X5 offers quite a compliant ride and enjoyable handling especially compared to its previous-generation models. The steering feels well connected to the road and offers excellent feedback. Hence, taking the X5 on a winding section of a road will not turn out to be a disappointment like many other SUVs. The 2021 BMW X5 will offer the sportiest handling and driving dynamics.  

2021 BMW M5 will be one of the most engaging SUVs to drive

In comparison, it generates more power and torque than Acura MDX SH-AWD but less than the Land Rover Discovery and Maserati Levante. Also, the X5 offers the RWD trim at a higher price than the AWD trim of MDX SH and FWD trim of Land Rover Discovery. The performance of the X5 is at par and even better with some trims when compared to its rivals. We expect similar or better attributes from the 2021 trims of the model.

Fuel Economy

We are glad to report that BMW has not only taken care of the performance aspect with the X5 but also of your pocket. Hence, with the current model being one the most fuel-efficient car in our comparison, you will find nothing to complain with the 2021 BMW X5 as well. The RWD X5 provides a slightly better fuel economy at 23 mpg (combined) while the AWD versions offer 20 mpg in the city, 26 mpg on the highway, and 22 combined mpg. Hence, the only rival that comes close to the X5 in terms of fuel efficiency is the Acura MDX SH.


2021 BMW X5 sDrive40i

2020 Acura MDX SH-AWD

2020 Land Rover Discovery

2020 Maserati Levante

MPG (City)





MPG (Highway)





MPG (Combined)





Fuel Tank Capacity (Gal.)





With BMW also offering a hybrid version of the X5 now you can only expect it to report better fuel efficiency numbers. With its 24-kWh battery hybrid X5 has an electric-only range of 30 miles and an electric top speed of 84 mph. As Land Rovers have never been known for fuel efficiency, the Discovery offers the poorest numbers while the Maserati Levante trails it at 20.2 combined MPG. 


As the BMW X5 recently got a major overhaul in terms of its design and exteriors, 2021 is expected to receive the same design on the outside. However, in order to make it look a bit apart from the 2020 model, we do expect BMW to make a few changes on the outside.

2021 BMW X5 will come with the same physical proportions

The current generation offers sharp and sporty looks along with an aggressive stance with its enhanced iconic kidney grille at the front. On the side, it gets sharp and chiseled lines with straight cuts and creases. All this helps it look quite attractive on the road and its short overhangs and flared wheel arches offer a muscular look. BMW has designed the car to be as aerodynamic as possible with enhanced exterior mirrors and air blades at the rear that gets it the lowest drag coefficient value in this segment. 


2021 BMW X5 sDrive40i

2020 Acura MDX SH-AWD

2020 Land Rover Discovery

2020 Maserati Levante

Curb Weight (lbs.)





Length (in)





Width (in)





Height (in)





Ground Clearance (in)





Wheelbase (in)





Owners can make their X5 a more rugged-looking crossover by opting for the ‘xLine’ styling that includes faux bash-plate below the front bumper, an insert for the rear bumper, and dual rocker panels. Buyers can even replace the standard wheel size with 20-inch ones and add sporty body colors to both end bumpers and side body-colored sills by choosing the styling M Sport package. We can expect similar exterior dimensions and attributes from next year’s model. The current model of the X5 has the highest curb weight, wheelbase, and ground clearance compared to its rivals.

The key exterior features of the 2021 X5s might be:

  • Enlarged dual-kidney grille
  • Adaptive LED headlights
  • LED fog lights
  • Daytime running lights
  • 19-inch wheels
  • All-weather tires
  • Panoramic sunroof
  • Power liftgate

Interior Seating and Cargo

On the inside, the 2021 BMW X5 is expected to receive only minor updates and carry over the 2020 models cabin and its layout. The cabin of the X5 is spacious, and owners can add a third-row into the vehicle; however, the third row will remain cramped. It offers premium looking dashboard but it is cluttered with controls, and new users might take some time to understand the interactive features of the iDrive infotainment system.

The first two rows of the vehicle boast spaciousness and can comfortably accommodate average-sized adults. Features including a digital gauge with a 12.3-in screen, four-zone climate control, rearview mirror with auto-dimming capability, panoramic sunroof, and cruise control offer great comfort.

The interior of the 2021 BMW X5 shall largely remain the same

All seats are comfortable, and front row seats come with 16-way power adjustments. Owners can replace the standard seats with multi-contour in 50i trim to get more support. Unfortunately, the vehicle showcases a standard front view and chaotic rearview. Deep seats provide good headroom but become problematic while entering and exiting the car.

Vernasca leather upholstery is only available for 40i and 50i trims which makes the cabin feel even more upmarket and posh. With a cargo space of 33.9 cubic feet, the X5 is capable of accommodating 11 average-sized bags. The trunk space stands at a competitive edge with its rivals. Overall, the interior of the 2021 X5 will offer top-notch fit and finish as well as a healthy list of comfort and convenience features. 


2021 BMW X5 sDrive40i

2020 Acura MDX SH-AWD

2020 Land Rover Discovery

2020 Maserati Levante

Passenger Capacity





Front Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)





Second Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)





The seating capacity of the 2021 X5’s will be lowest among its 2020 rivals and similar to the Levante. Cabin space for both rows is either competitive or high in all three segments, namely, headroom, shoulder-, and legroom. The X5 and the Levante feel the most premium on the inside while the Acura still lacks behind in terms of cabin quality.

Infotainment System

The infotainment system of the 2021 BMW X5 will comprise of a 12.3-inch touchscreen along with rotary controls, a sound system with ten speakers, dual USB ports, and HD radio. It is compatible with Bluetooth, and Apple CarPlay and functional through touch, voice commands, and touchpad.

2021 BMW X5 will get the same infotainment screen

The 50i trim replaces the standard audio system with Harman Kardon 16-speaker audio system which sounds crisp and a great companion for the audiophiles. It will also get a wireless charging pad and provide options for a WiFi hotspot, Bowers & Wilkins 20-speaker sound system, CD player, and touchscreens for rear seats.

The critical interior features of the 2021 BMW X5 are as follows:

  • 12-3-inch touchscreen
  • Sound system with ten speakers
  • HD radio
  • USB ports
  • Bluetooth and Apple CarPlay compatibility
  • Two-zone climate control
  • Rearview mirror with an auto-dimming capability
  • Panoramic sunroof
  • Cruise control
  • 4-way adjustable lumbar support
  • 16-way power-adjustable heated front seats
  • Voice, touch, and touchpad infotainment system receptiveness

Safety Features and Ratings

The 2019 BMW X5 was a part of the top safety pick of IIHS. It has not been tested after that which is a common thing for luxury cars. The 2021 model will offer BMW's Active Protection System which can predict accidents and prepares the car for it by automatically pre-tensioning safety belts, closing windows and moon roof, and activating post-crash braking. It will offer all advanced features which a customer expects in its price segment. 

It will get many other safety features such as:

  • Adaptive cruise control
  • Lane-keeping assist
  • Automated emergency braking
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Rear cross-traffic alert
  • Forward collision warning
  • Automatic high beams

Final Verdict

As of now there no official release date set for the 2021 BMW X5. However, it was to be released soon after the release of the plug-in hybrid trim which the BMW revealed in July. The 2021 BMW X5 will have many significant changes in its line-up and become even more competitive in the Hybrid, and EV segments. It is a car that showcases luxuriousness, athleticism, and sportiness. But we expect no major changes in the interior or exterior of the vehicle since it was recently redesigned in 2019.

Also Read:

This is why the Maserati Levante is the most expensive car in its segment

Does the BMW X5 offer the best driving pleasure for its price?

2021 BMW X5 FAQs

Is the BMW X5 a good car?

Absolutely, the BMW X5 manages to get most things right. If you love driving or are a driving enthusiast, it is the best car in its segment that you can buy. While offering the best performance it also takes care of your pocket by offering excellent fuel economy and hence is a car that does not disappoint at any front.

What is the warranty on offer with the BMW X5?

BMW currently offers a 4-year/50,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty for Passenger Cars and Light Trucks 2020 Models in the US market. It also offers 12-year Unlimited Mileage Rust Perforation Limited Warranty and a 4-year Unlimited Mileage Roadside Assistance Program

Is the BMW X5 a value-for-money package?

The X5 is not really the cheapest option in its class. But it is due to the sheer quality and performance it has on offer. Considering the segment there are better value for money options available in the segment. However, none of them offer the level of German engineering and driver-focused characteristics in its class.