BMW Malaysia has officially introduced the F15 BMW X5 xDrive40e in the country, and the locally-assembled plug-in hybrid SUV makes its debut here in M Sport form, rolling in at RM388,800 on-the-road without insurance, making it RM25k cheaper than the recently-launched CKD Volvo XC90 T8.
It’s also the cheapest of the X5 variants in the country (the xDrive35i goes for RM573,800, while the xDrive30d is priced at RM533,800). Import and excise duty reductions brought about by government hybrid incentives lop off RM194,000 off the car’s original RM582,800 price.
The X5 xDrive40e, which becomes the 11th model to be locally-assembled at BMW Group Malaysia’s Assembly Facilities at the Kulim Hi-Tech Park, made its global debut last March, with the international press drive for the car taking place in Munich last July.
The hybrid X5 – the first BMW core brand PHEV – looks very much like its regular sibling; the biggest giveaway that it isn’t comes from a small cutout panel sitting above the front fender on the left side of the vehicle, which is the flap cover of the charging port. Aside from this, model badging at the front of the vehicle’s flanks and an “eDrive” logo on the tailgate provides the other exterior visual clues.
Other bits are tucked away – under the bonnet, there’s a blue eDrive strip on the engine cover, and inside the cabin the only cue is a small eDrive badge on the console sliding cover (the scuff plates are M versions instead of eDrive units). There’s also an eDrive button, which is located down by the gear selector, and this provides selection of the three different operating modes for the hybrid powertrain.
The Malaysian X5 xDrive40e comes dressed with a BMW Individual exterior line aluminium satin trim as well as an M Sport aerodynamic package as standard, and rides on 19-inch M Double-spoke light alloy wheels with 255/50 front and 285/45 rear staggered tyres. Kit also includes adaptive LED headlights with automatic high beam control and LED fog lights.
The petrol-electric system in this one consists of a N20 2.0 litre turbocharged four petrol mill offering 242 hp at 5,000 to 6,500 rpm and 350 Nm of torque from 1,250 to 4,800 rpm and a synchronous electric motor offering a maximum output of 111 hp at 3,170 rpm (rated output is 73 hp) and 250 Nm of twist from zero rpm.
Combined system output is 313 hp and 450 Nm of torque, delivered by an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission to all four wheels via the automaker’s xDrive system, regardless of the propulsion source. Incidentally, the electric motor sits before both transmission and transfer case, so the X5 can theoretically be taken off-road in EV mode. Speaking of electric-only operation, the xDrive40e can operate up to 120 km/h in EV mode, and can cover up to around 30 km on electric power alone.
Other performance figures include a 0-100 km/h time of 6.8 seconds and an electronically-limited 210 km/h top speed. As for claimed rated consumption, it’s 3.3 litres per 100 km combined, but that’s according to a NEDC cycle rating, so a more realistic figure is that of 6.5 litres per 100 km for daily commutes of between 50 to 60 km, with the battery fully charged and the engine deployed. With the fuel tank capacity unchanged at 85 litres, the overall range of the X5 xDrive40e is around 830 km.
The battery pack for the vehicle is a 351 volt lithium-ion unit with a gross energy capacity of 9.0 kWh – the high-voltage 96-cell unit, which also supplies power to the battery for the 12V electrical system via a voltage transformer, is housed underneath the luggage compartment floor and adds another 150 kg or so to the vehicle, which weighs in at 2,305 kg.
The battery takes away some boot space, with 500 litres available in the variant (1,720 litres with rear seats folded), and it also omits the extra seating – this X5 is only a five-seater.
As for charging times, the total recharging period for the lithium-ion battery is around two hours and 45 minutes via a BMW i Wallbox system at a charging rate of 3.5 kW (16A/230V line), and around three hours and 50 minutes via a conventional household outlet.
For our market, a normal socket charger is bundled with the vehicle, though a BMW i Wallbox is available for around RM6k, though there are installation costs, and these will depend on the complexity of the install. This could range from a few hundred to around RM5k, with the average being about RM3k.
Three drive operation modes are available, led by Auto eDrive, which is the default setting. This utilises both the combustion engine and electric motor for propulsion, with the motor alone used for setting off with normal power requirements, while the engine cuts in at around 70 km/h or when full acceleration is needed. In this mode, the operating strategy balances the workload of both power sources for optimal deployment.
With MAX eDrive, the car runs on pure electric power, the range being dependent on the available level of battery charge. Lastly, there’s SAVE Battery mode, which runs on engine power alone and enables the battery’s current level of charge to be kept constant or replenished for use later on in urban surroundings.
Also on, Driving Experience Control, which offers the usual selection of vehicle set-up modes (Comfort, Sport, Eco Pro). Aside from tailoring throttle mapping, steering characteristics and the response of the transmission, the system also alters the characteristics of the sports-tuned Adaptive M suspension specified in the local vehicle’s Dynamic Damper Control package. The hybrid also features a self-levelling rear air suspension as standard.
Standard equipment on the xDrive40e includes front sports seats, auto air-conditioning with four-zone control, a Navigation system Professional system with a 10.25-inch display monitor as well as a Harman Kardon surround sound system with 16 speakers and nine channels of amplification. The xDrive40e is also equipped with a rear seat entertainment system, made up of two 10.2-inch monitors.
The Driving Assistant system found on the local car only has Lane Departure Warning and City & Pedestrian Collision Warning under its umbrella. There’s also front and rear Park Distance Control (PDC) as well as Surround View, which comes with side and rear view cameras.
As for BMW ConnectedDrive Services, the X5 xDrive40e comes with Intelligent Emergency Call, BMW TeleServices, Concierge Services and eDrive Services.
Four exterior colours are available for the X5 xDrive40e, and these are Glacier Silver, Mineral White, Space Grey and Carbon Black, and these can be partnered with the two upholstery choices – Leather Dakota Terra or Leather Dakota Black – on call.
At the launch, the company also announced that the ChargeNow service will be offered with the X5 xDrive40e. The package comprises a ChargeNow card, which grants straightforward access to ChargEV charging stations, offered through BMW Group Malaysia’s partnership with Malaysian Green Technology Corporation (GreenTech Malaysia) – the usual charging costs apply. ChargEV stations are already operational in 19 strategic locations throughout Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Kedah, Melaka and Johor.
The ChargEV platform uses a floating cable system, which means it only has a socket at the charger and the owner of the car has to provide the Type 2 cable. The X5 doesn’t include a Type 2 cable, but one can be purchased for about RM1,200. However, as mentioned earlier, the regular household three-pin socket charger is provided, and being a plug-in hybrid, charging is actually completely optional for this car.
In terms of warranty, the X5 comes with a five year unlimited mileage warranty. A five year 100,000 km free service package is included. The battery has a six year warranty with a 100,000 km mileage cap. The battery is modular and divided into two sections. If anything goes wrong outside the warranty period you only need to replace the module that has the problem – that will cost you about RM5,000 (or about RM10,000 for both). Being able to replace just half the battery is a smart move.