"No doubt about it, this is the best vehicle I have owned in 36 years of driving. Purchased off eBay with 53k miles, I have added 40k miles in the last year with few problems. Only unexpected expense was a blower relay for the AC.
Fuel mileage is amazing: 19.7 mpg in town and up to 25.6 mpg on the highway, even running 70 mph. Performance is more than acceptable from the 3.0 six cylinder. Towing our Waverunner is an easy task, and reduces fuel mileage about 10%. Very quiet as well, with almost no windnoise.
The handling and ride are just the right balance between comfort and control. Mine does not have the sport package, and from what I have read and heard, the sport package can make the X5 uncomfortably hard riding for some people. But I am extremely pleased with the base suspension setup, and will go from the stock 235/65R17 tires to a set of 255/60R17 on the next replacement to enhance the cornering just a bit.
New ones are a bit pricey, but they do hold their value very well. And you can't beat the free service under the warranty - but mine of course was used with an expired warranty - so how has it been?
I have had to replace the brake pads and rotors (went with ceramic pads - dust free!), but that is normal at 60k miles. I also had to replace the front axles because the previous owner didn't catch the cracked CV joint boots. Keep an eye on those things. The repair bill was $1100, but I don't think that was the fault of the vehicle.
I change the oil and filter every ten thousand miles (synthetic of course), even though the indicator looks like it would go about fourteen thousand. Surprisingly, the dealer only charges $80 for that service, and they alway do a quick check for any leaks, and inspect the belts and hoses, as well as top off the windshield cleaner and wash the vehicle.
There are two minor convenience items: sometimes the automatic climate control is a little slow to kick the fan speed back up when you're sitting in the sun, and I can't get rid of a slow speed rattle from the left side of the liftgate. The dealer knows about the rattle problem and the 2007 liftgate design has eliminated that one.
Overall, I am sure I will drive the wheels off this thing, on my way to another in the future!"
Pros: "Keeps value very well over the years, quiet, drives like a car."
Cons: "...can't think of any."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I couldn't ask more out of an SUV. The gas mileage is excellent on the 3.0 (18mpg combined), and it has been nothing but reliable over the past 3 years of my ownership. Don't let complaints of maintenance costs from others fool you. If you have general mechanic experience then you too can maintain this yourself quite cheaply - order parts online: autohausaz, pelican, etc."
"My husband and I have owned 5 BMW's and my 2001 X5 3.0 is my favorite. I have owned it almost 6 years and it just hit 100 k miles! I call it my "tank" and "snow beast'.I love everything about it except my passenger seat is not power which i think should be standard on a luxury suv in this price range. We have had to replace 2 window regulators and the power door locks were malfunctioning, both inexpensive fixes considering that's all we have had to fix on a car with that much milage! My husband and I have never had any major mechanical problems on ANY of our BMW's and his has 172 K! We have both been in wrecks that should have taken our lives and we walked away! We will always be loyal to BMW!"
"My hubby bought me my 2001 X5 and I have never been so impressed with a vehicle. I have had MANY vehicles and SUVs but this one is the greatest. It is incredible just like my Denali but small enough to whip around town in a flash and still have room for the kids and pets. We haven't had any problems with ours and it has just hit the 106k mile marker.
I would buy this kind of reliable luxury again and again!"