Car of the Week - August 4, 2002

2002 BMW X5

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Even though this SUV from BMW is not meant for rock climbing - 7 inch ground clearance - it still "rocks." It prowls through the urban landscape with 340 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque that peaks at 3,700 rpm of the 4.4-liter V8 engine. How about 0 to 60 mph in 6.2 seconds. We tested the X5 on wide open stretches of highway and mountain twisted turns and were delighted with the silky transmission and quiet power of its massive disc brakes which calmly handled every situation presented to it.

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The well black leathered and wood grained interior includes a host of features: xenon headlamps, a power sunroof, a trunk-mounted, dealer-installed six-disc CD changer and a park distance control system for the front and rear. The audio system could use knobs and daylight-readable LEDs but we enjoyed the audio quality - its separation and effects. We loaded a bunch of video equipment into the back of the X5 - this is made easier when the lifting the hatch reveals a pair of buttons which casually lower the 2nd seats; then the very cool sliding rear floor makes organizing and loading a breeze. Good stuff.

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- Mark & Katie Fulmer

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