Moreover, the X5's unit-body has been design for maximum energy dissipation in heavy impacts. But don't think of the X3 as small. The strongest in the industry. It works well in foul weather and easily negotiates muddy trails. Well made and extremely reliable. I drive highways and some pretty rough areas, and this vehicle handles them all well.
Improvements for 2004 are more extensive than any since the X5 was introduced five years ago. It's quicker away from traffic lights than most cars, and capable of nearly 150 mph, though we certainly don't recommend driving a vehicle this tall that fast. For that reason, Park Distance Control is valuable. With large tinted glass panels over both rows of seats, all occupants get a premium view. The battery lives under the cargo floor, while the space-saver spare is located under the rear, truck-style. Now let's get back to logic. For 2004, the X5's look has been freshened, with a redesigned front end, new taillights and new wheel designs.
Another common issue with the 4. The automatic features a Steptronic mode, which allows a choice of automatic or semi-manual control. That's not to say the X5 is soft. More importantly, it now has 315 horsepower down from 325 in the 7 Series because of exhaust and intake plumbing. A simple, functional dash features easily-read instruments in a shaded pod in front of the driver, a thick-rimmed, leather-covered steering wheel with audio and cruise controls that is manually adjustable for tilt and reach, and a center stack with navigation, audio, and climate systems. Over all it is a beast compared to other sport utility vehicles. Massive tires contribute to impressive cornering grip and stopping power.
A six-speed manual transmission is now standard on the 3. The new six-speed automatic is standard on V-8 models. Armed with groceries, you'll more likely open the rear hatch with the keyless remote control, which works well. So we'd arrive at the back of the vehicle only to find that we had to walk back to the driver's seat and re-release the hatch. The system now almost seamlessly adjusts braking or power shutdown during understeer or oversteer situations.
Outstanding interior and superb performance. Passive safety was a major development goal for the X5, which can be ordered with no fewer than eight airbags. The X5 offers great performance. Each front-seat occupant gets a front airbag, a side thorax airbag and a curtain-style head protection airbag. A big V8 delivers the ultimate X5 thrill, but it's also available with an outstanding six-cylinder. Side by side with a 2003 X5, the changes for 2004 are noticeable.
Black plastic lower bumpers, wheel arch trim, and side sills contribute to the rough-and-ready look, and should keep body damage from minor brush or shopping cart incidents at bay. Oh yeah, leaks more oil than the Exxon Valdez. A six-speed manual transmission is now standard on the 3. Its steering is precise and it's exceptionally stable at supra-legal speeds. This unit-body construction provides a much stiffer structure, which improves handling, reduces noise and allows better fit and finish, though many consider the design less rugged and durable. The X5 offers nearly all the bells, whistles and high-tech gizmos that you'll find on the most expensive sedans in the world.
Hill-descent control also helps at that time, at low speeds. The motor was burning too much oil, lots of smoke come out of pipe if i idle. Interior volume is a mere cubic foot and a half less, and the X3 actually has two cubic feet more cargo space. It's a tall, chunky two-box design with the hood sculpting, twin-kidney grille, passenger cabin shape, and the rear brow spoiler familiar from the X5. The X5's cargo capacity is no better than a 5 Series wagon's.
In fact, the X5 is not capable off road, not when measured against sport-utilities that are capable. On the freeway, the X5 changes lanes with the lightest touch and total precision. The moment we opened the rear hatch, we were struck by the relative lack of space. Each front-seat occupant gets a front airbag, a side thorax airbag and a curtain-style head protection airbag. Needed a car that I enjoyed driving but was economical. A sturdy rollaway cargo cover can be removed for carrying larger items. From the outside, only the front and rear fascias are different, and even though the trademark kidney grille is larger and the front bumper has larger intake ducts, the 2004 is still very much the X5 we all recognize.
A Good Ride, If You Can Maintain It. While it has the same displacement as its predecessor, nearly everything else has changed. Heavy doors and great saftey features. The sports steering wheel has a frontal air bag inflator that may explode due to propellant degradation occurring after long-term exposure to high absolute humidity, temperature and temperature cycling. A big V8 delivers the ultimate X5 thrill, but it's also available with an outstanding six-cylinder.