We first saw the 2024 BMW X5 facelift back in February before it embarked on a world tour as the Bavarian brand sells the luxury SUV in all corners of the world. Its latest stop was in Bulgaria where several versions of the Mercedes GLE and Audi Q7 competitor were photographed in the countryside for the model’s local launch.

The one that caught our attention would have to be the xDrive50e in Tanzanite Blue Metallic and equipped with the optional M Sport Package. It may not be an M60i let alone the X5 M but this plug-in hybrid derivative is packing some serious punch, especially if we compare it to the xDrive45e before it. The PHEV variant now belts out 489 hp and 700 Nm (516 lb-ft) for a 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) run in 4.8 seconds. It also happens to have a much bigger battery with a usable capacity of 25.7 kWh to deliver an electric range of up to 68 miles (110 kilometers) in the WLTP cycle.

Some would argue the xDrive50e is the perfect compromise by offering a mélange of efficiency and performance while significantly undercutting the M Performance and M models. Many won’t find it as desirable as the truly sporty derivatives but few PHEVs out there can match its power and performance. As before, only the X5 gets the electrified powertrain as the sleeker X6 can’t be had in the xDrive50e specification.

Some of us had concerns the Life Cycle Impulse would bring the controversial split headlights of the larger X7 but that wasn’t the case. BMW did make changes to the front lights but these slimmer clusters with matrix adaptive LED technology are still a one-piece setup. Gone are the laser headlights of the pre-LCI model as the German luxury brand seems to be gradually moving away after using the tech for many years.

While the exterior hasn’t been changed in a significant way, the cabin has been thoroughly updated to accommodate the iDrive 8. There’s less switchgear on the center console while the gear selector is a lot smaller. In addition, the passenger side of the dashboard now incorporates an “X” graphic part of the ambient lighting. On the M60i and M models, there’s an “M” instead.

Sources say BMW will continue to produce the G05-generation X5 until mid-2026 before replacing the model with a yet-to-be-confirmed G65 rumored to spawn a fully electric iX5 on the same CLAR platform.

Source: BMW