The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has tested two new BMWs, and one of them performed better than the other. The 2024 5 Series – seen here in the i5 M60 guise – managed to grab the highest award by qualifying for a Top Safety Pick+. As for the 2024 X5 facelift, it only scored a Top Safety Pick award because one of the two available headlight versions received a Marginal rating.
To qualify for a Top Safety Pick+ award, a car must receive a Good rating in the following categories: driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, original moderate overlap front, and updated side tests. In addition, the vehicles must have Acceptable or Good headlights as standard on the entry-level trim. Another criterion is that a front crash prevention system rated as either Advanced or Superior for driving both during the day and the night must be available.
Only the latest 5 Series ticked all these boxes. The SUV missed out on the Top Safety Pick+ because of the inferior headlights fitted as standard on the sDrive40i, xDrive40i, and xDrive50e. These lights got only a Marginal rating since the IIHS discovered the high beam didn’t provide suitable illumination on a straight road or in right-hand curves. The other LED headlights received an Acceptable rating.
To earn a Top Safety Pick (without the plus) award, a vehicle must get an Acceptable rating in the updated side test and either an Advanced or Superior rating in the daytime vehicle-to-pedestrian test.
Although the IIHS chose to show an image of the i5 M60, the car they tested was a 530i. Since the X5 is a facelift rather than a next-generation model, most of its ratings originate from a 2019 X5 xDrive40i. However, the IIHS did use a 2024 X5 M60i for the updated side test, scoring a Good rating. All of the SUV’s ratings apply to the X6, except for the updated side test.
IIHS’ new results come only a few days after the 5 Series received a five-star rating after being crash-tested by Euro NCAP. The team behind the European New Car Assessment Programme used a fully electric variant, the i5 eDrive40 with a single motor and rear-wheel drive.