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When you want high-quality materials and performance satisfaction, the luxury midsize SUV segment delivers. The luxury SUV space is crowded with top-notch contenders, too. And one particular SUV earning heaps of praise this year is the 2021 BMW X5. The 2021 BMW X5 is getting attention from even the Mercedes-Benz enthusiasts and Cadillac fans alike.

And out of all the luxury brands with offerings in this space, some say the 2021 BMW X5 is unmatched. In fact, one critical review list suggests it comes in second only to one other luxury midsize SUV. 

The best luxury SUVs you can buy this year

MotorTrend teams inspect and experience each vehicle extensively, including the rigorous driving tests. This year’s best luxury SUVs earn their ranks based on performance, luxury, and value.

A few of the top contenders on this list of nine include the 2021 Genesis GV80, the 2021 Porsche Cayenne, and the 2020 Land Rover Range Rover Velar. And coming in at No. 2, outranking each of the aforementioned challengers, is the mighty yet elegant 2021 BMW X5.

Where the 2021 BMW X5 overachieves

The BMW X5 has been in production and on the stage since 1999. Over the years, the popular midsize SUV managed to maintain its midrange ranking too. But MotorTrend says the 2021 model appears to have gotten everything right, and it may just be the best X5 yet. The team compliments the SUV’s responsive and sharp handling. They say the transmission feels “fine-tuned” for smooth acceleration, as well.

The satisfying hum of the 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 also earns praise, harnessing up to 617 hp. But the other engine option isn’t too shabby either, with its 3.0-liter turbocharged I-6, capable of 335 hp. Finding your best version is easy, as well, with your choice of four trim levels: sDrive40i, xDrive40i, xDrive45e, and the X5 M50i. The base price range of $60,945 to $115,095, meaning you can get as much or as little of the X5 that your budget allows.

A few setbacks to consider before you buy

Not every vehicle can be perfect, even in the luxury categories. And while the 2021 BMW X5 ranks well, there are a few cons to weigh. MotorTrend calls some of the active safety tech overeager. The team wasn’t all too inspired about the exterior design either.

Another common criticism is that it can be a snug fit for people and things beyond the first row. And Edmunds says the wide roof pillars cause blind spots. Edmunds also cites the wide door sills make getting in and out of this SUV a tad cumbersome.

The BMW X5 is a top-two contender

The verdict on the 2021 BMW X5 is clear. It may not be as road-chomping as the Porsche Cayenne or as big as the Genesis GV80, but it certainly offers a perfect blend of luxury and driving dynamics. At least that’s what Car and Driver says about the X5. Only the MotorTrend SUV of the Year, the 2021 Land Rover Defender, ranks better. If practicality and performance satisfaction matter to you, the BMW X5 is worth a drive.

The 2021 BMW X5 can get pricey quickly, depending on the trim level and specs you select. But if luxury midsize SUVs are your preference, you likely won’t mind the associated MSRP. What these reviews suggest is that the X5 will deliver wherever you need it to, including luxury and performance. And for this year, it’s a better option than every other model except one.


BMW’s 2021 Luxury SUV Lineup Earned Plenty of Recommendations