BMW X5 M Buyers Guide

For the sake of “hacking” we are going to be talking about the BMW X5 M in the F85 era from 2014-2018.

Evolved from the 2009-2013 X5 chassis, this F85 predecessor is something that we in the ECH community consider a fan favorite. The BMW X5 M is a great choice for a mid-size SUV that is enjoyable to drive, usable for everyday usage, and holds value well for being a BMW. 

The X5 M is a clear representation of BMW taking their models up a notch with certain trims and defining them as M’s by nature instead of granting them an “M-Power” Option Pack. So yes there is a BMW X5, but it is significantly lacking in the power and edge department with both a more basic exterior and interior as well as a more docile engine and suspension. 

The 4.4-liter V8 engine of the X5M is tuned up with TwinPower Turbo and Valvetronic technologies to give it an output of 575 horsepower, 553 pounds of torque, and able to go 0-60 in just 4.2 seconds, making it one of the most powerful engines ever developed for an all-wheel-drive BMW.

In addition to this feat of engineering for the german brand, the dollar that these BMW X5 M’s currently sit at are not able to be ignored in terms of hacking, which is why we are going to be talking about them now.

Driving Experience

BMWs have a reputation for being incredibly easy to drive, their functionality is on par with Mercedes-Benz, however, I will say that the BMW interiors do feel cheaper than MB.

The entire cabin of the X5 M is very spacious, able to fit the whole family with a large trunk space in the back to be able to carry all the groceries or and of course your golf clubs for a Saturday out at the links.

Everything tech-wise is generally easy to use so Navi, Radio, Media are all accessible at the touch of your fingertips via the control center at the center console. 

There is a lot of power and pick up to the X5 M thanks to it being the sporty trim, but it isn’t intimidating, meaning if you need your grandma to take the truck to pick up the kids from school, she won’t be at a risk for putting the SUV into a tree.

BMW X5 M Common Problems

If you don’t know by now, there is a common theme of issues that plagues all BMWs regardless of model or trim, electronics. They always seem to go at the worst times in the glitchiest of manners. But while it can be annoying as we live in a world centered around technology convenience, these are typically simple fixes that most third-party shops with experience on newer BMWs can solve.

With the BMW X5 M being around for as long as it has, there are of course bound to be issues that arise across the board, luckily though, there are only 8 active recalls for all BMW X5 M models, which is shockingly low in retrospect. Be sure to check out the list HERE and investigate your potential BMW X5 M to ensure that any active recalls have been performed and if they have not, get with the current owner to see what can be done to rectify this.

BMW X5 M Cost of Ownership/Maintenance

One of the best things about owning a BMW is that the ability to have maintenance performed upon your make is much easier than for instance a McLaren or a Ferrari. But just because it is easier to find licensed mechanics doesn’t mean that you should trust just anyone to do the repairs and maintenance for your X5M. 

Oil changes will be around $300-$400 depending on where you live and the type of shop you bring your BMW to. I also encourage you to not take your BMW X5 M to a dealer in order to do any recommended maintenance as they will charge you an arm and a leg for things third-party shops could do just as well and perhaps even quicker. 

These are great cars to utilize to form relationships with shops in your area and that way when you rotate out, the shop will be happy to work on your next vehicles to come because you forged a relationship with a vehicle that is already easy to work with and reliable.

BMW X5 M Year Changes

The X5 M has been around for longer than you might realize. With 2009 being the launch year and going all the way until 2021 with an expected 2022 model as well. 

2009-2013: The original launch year absorbs the E70 generation, so this is the first rollout of the X5 sports line “M” edition

2015-2018: Is the facelifted both inside and out version of the X5M with an uptick in engine output as well as updated tech inside the SUV. As for the exterior, BMW updated the bumpers, fenders, headlights, taillights, almost a complete overhaul to make the mid-size SUV more modernized.

2020-present: BMW decided to take their entire brand one step into the future with a massive overhaul on the technology inside as well as the entire exterior, perhaps the most notable change would be the dual kidney grille that the newer year models all seem to boast, but whether you love them or not, they are here to stay it seems. 

BMW X5 M Options

The BMW X5 M Options are more derived from packages rather than just ala carte singular options. 

Stickers don’t range wildly on BMWs as they would on a Ferrari, but nonetheless, you will want to ensure that you are looking at a BMW X5 M that has a strong option list. 

If you need to know what options hold more weight than others, be sure to check out the link HERE as it will show the monetary value that certain packages and stand-alone options provide to the resale value of your X5 M. 

Best BMW X5 M To Buy

A great hack is going to be a 2015-2017 BMW X5 M that is loaded to the teeth with options such as the executive package, the driver’s assistance package, and of course the M drivers package. Other options to have are premium colored leather such as Mugello Red, Silverstone Full Merino Aragon Brown, Black Full Merino, etc. But also ensure you are looking for the Bang & Olufsen Sound System and carbon-fiber interior trim.

For those years, you want to ensure you are keeping the miles less than 30,000-35,000 miles that way you give yourself the ability to utilize the SUV and put the miles on it that you’d like to. Regardless of the year and the miles, always be sure to send your BMW X5 M to a PPI before pulling the trigger to ensure everything is up to par and you aren’t incurring someone else’s $15,000 problem.


We all love a good SUV that also has some power to its punch. There are a lot of luxury sports SUVs out there but not all of them are created equally. If you are looking for a fun SUV that has great reliability, usable features, and is easy to maneuver on a daily basis, then the BMW X5 M might be right for you. 

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