Two of BMW’s SUVs have been given new hearts and M badges, to create the 2019 BMW X5 M50i and BMW X7 M50i.
With a new development of BMW’s 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8, the M50i variants of each make the same 390kW of peak power between 5500 and 6000rpm, while a maximum of 750Nm of torque is available from 1800rpm right up to 4600rpm.
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Power is put to all four wheels in both models, via BMW’s xDrive AWD system, after being transmitted through an 8-speed Steptronic gearbox.
BMW says this allows for acceleration from 0-100km/h in 4.3 seconds for the X5 M50i, and in 4.7sec for the X7.
While still primarily the same 4.4-litre engine as seen in previous BMW models, the V8 has copped a few tweaks which have allowed the engine to “respond with great sensitivity” to driver’s right-foot-input.
BMW explains that “these include the crankcase, cylinder barrels, pistons, crankshaft and cylinder head, and above all the freshly updated BMW TwinPower turbo technology.
“The turbochargers positioned between the cylinder banks in the V compartment have been enlarged, while the direct petrol injection performs at a new maximum pressure level of 350 bar.”
The engine’s upgrades and impressive power outputs are necessary for pulling an estimated approximate 2300kg and 2500kg in the X5 and X7 respectively, though BMW hasn’t confirmed weights for either model.
Carrying this weight in the X5 M50i is an adaptive M suspension setup, with two settings in the form of Comfort and Sport. The X7 M50i, on the other hand, receives more sophisticated (as a higher class of SUV demands) ‘adaptive dual-axle air suspension’ which can be optioned to the X5 for extra cost.
This allows the X7 to lower its ride height by 20mm in Sport, or raise it by 40mm for traversing off-road environments. It can be paired with ‘integral active steering’, or all-wheel steering, for each model, which turns the rear wheels slightly against the fronts for sharper turns at low speed, or with the fronts for more stability at highway speeds.
Each model is expected to arrive in SUV-hungry Australia later this year, with BMW Australia confirming it has expressed interest in both. Pricing has yet to be confirmed.