BMW is a company that seems to be transitioning a bit. It’s creating models that no one ever thought it would make, like front-wheel drive people carriers and electric hatchbacks. BMW is most definitely taking fans of the brand out of their comfort zone. This new direction has been met with much criticism. Whether fair or unfair, people seem to dislike leaving the comfortable place where BMW only makes small, rear-wheel drive performance sedans. But the naysayers fail to realize that BMW has done this sort of thing before and it knows what it’s doing. The original BMW X5 is the most recent example of this.


When the first generation X5 debuted, it was blasphemy. “BMW is making an SUV? What next, flying pigs?” people would say (I assume). The idea of BMW creating a luxury SUV, instead of the performance coupes and sedans it was so well known for, bothered many loyal fans. But as soon as it debuted, it was an instant success. The idea of a luxury SUV from one of Germany’s premium brands spread like wildfire. Admittedly, BMW wasn’t the first to do this, Mercedes-Benz was with the original M-Class. But the X5 perfected the idea and brought it more mainstream.


The X5 then gained a second generation and then a third, each one more successful than the next. Now the BMW X5 is a staple of the Bavarian’s lineup and one of the key vehicles on its sales charts. It’s also one of the most popular luxury SUVs in the world. And it all started by BMW having the courage to make a vehicle that it knew its fans would hate at first. But now, it seems, its fans can’t live without it.

Related: History of the BMW X series


BMW knew exactly what it was doing. The Bavarian brand has taken customers, and the industry, to new heights before and it will do it again. Hell, the original 2002 was an idea most customers, especially American ones, didn’t understand until they tried it. The original M5 was the exact same way. So when BMW created the X5, it was just another stepping stone in the history of BMW’s innovation. And the very same thing is happening with the 2 Series Tourers and the i Division.

BMW knows that to be a truly successful and innovated automaker, it must take its fans and customers to places they’ve never been before. This trailblazing is often met with backlash, but BMW understands that it’s worth it in the long run. All successful companies understand this, whether it be in the auto industry or any other. But it’s the mark of a truly great company, when it can take you out of your comfort zone and show you something new because it knows that you’ll like it eventually. The original BMW X5 did that, the M5 and 2002 did that before it and the 2 Series Tourers as well as the i Division are doing it now. So it’s okay to get uncomfortable, as that’s how change happens.