Parkers overall rating: 4.4 out of 5 4.4

Verdict Should you buy a BMW X5?

Yes, as it’s the most complete large SUV on the market. Some might be more comfortable or offer more room, but as an overall package for families as well as the keen driver, this is the one to have compared with all of its rivals.

It really is good to drive and unlike earlier X5s, is surprisingly capable off-road. For the most part, though, it plays the part of luxurious, comfortable and effortless SUV very well indeed – just avoid going for the largest wheels if you’re after the smoothest ride.

Inside, it feels a more special place than an equivalent Mercedes-Benz GLE thanks to plush leather seats and plenty of pleasant materials, while the space on offer is impressive and more than enough for a family. Going for a seven-seat version might not be worth it – it’ll be a bit of a squeeze and the boot is small with them in place. But then that’s what the X7 is for.

The good news is the best all-round version of the X5 is the one with the cheapest engine – the xDrive30d. It’s smooth and responsive, while remaining the most economical option in the range. Go for it in M Sport specification – that’s what most X5s on the road will be, and will be popular when you come to get rid of it later on.

We’ll give the X5 45e plug-in hybrid an honourable mention, as its 50-60-mile electric range feels like a bit of a game-changer for a vehicle of this size and type. But beyond that, it’s near silent and so refined in daily use that the potential fuel economy (if you don’t drive it too far and keep it topped up with electricity) and taxation benefitsare almost outweighed by the sheer luxury of the thing.

Whether or not a large estate would suit your lifestyle better is up to you, but the downsides to picking an SUV like the BMW X5 have lessened with each generation. If you do prefer the sound of an estate, read our BMW 5 Series Touring review, or if you like the sound of something bigger, read about the BMW X7 SUV

Further reading

BMW X5 (2020) rear view