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BMW iX xDrive50 2023

BMW iX xDrive50 – winter test in the true north

Electric cars in winter tests tease out their true inner values. This year, winter in the true north is already on its way at the end of November. Constant snow over several days and icy temperatures are the challenges for the BMW iX. Get out into the cold and see how the large-format BMW with all-wheel drive and lots of extras performs in the winter endurance test.

The iX is the legitimate electric successor to the popular X series. Anyone who gets in for the first time will be pleased with the generous amount of space. The center tunnel is eliminated and creates more space. This guarantees plenty of space for all occupants. In addition, the interior is peppered with a very appealing sound system, massage seats and an anti-reflective display band with a very clearly arranged menu control. All control elements can be operated using the touchscreen, via the control unit in the center console and largely via voice commands or gesture control. After a few rides, every BMW driver will find their own optimal controls here.

BMW iX xDrive50 - Striking BMW kidney grille
BMW iX xDrive50 – Striking BMW kidney grille

Entertainment

The digital treats are continuously expanded with each new generation of electric cars. High-resolution displays open up new worlds, especially in the area of ​​entertainment. Some highlights can be found in BMW's repertoire. While the focus used to be on the technical finesse of the driving modes, the visual representations are now individually sophisticated and, depending on the mode that can be selected, are highlighted from the red-dominated sport mode to the cool shade of blue in the efficient mode. In the “Augmented Reality” area, the navigation instructions can be enhanced with a camera image. The head-up display with detailed navigation instructions and the display of all driving-relevant information including traffic light status is a feast for the eyes.

Large format appearance

With the iX 50, BMW definitely aims to set an example in the premium segment. A striking kidney grille, 21-inch aerodynamic rims with Pirelli tires and a bright mineral white metallic paintwork serve as the basis for a striking appearance. For the 2,6 ton weight, two Syncron electric motors with 523 hp and 765 Nm of torque ensure sufficient propulsion on all terrains. In terms of performance and dynamics, they overshadow the traditional BMW combustion engines and diesel engines. One step on the power pedal and the iX50 sprints from zero to 5 km/h in under 100 seconds without CO2 emissions.

BMW iX xDrive50 - Driving mode selection menu
BMW iX xDrive50 – driving mode selection menu

Anyone who has previously listened to the roaring exhaust sound will be lifted into higher spheres with a sound from the composer Hans Zimmer. In addition, individually adjustable driving components in the “modes” can be used to create driving profiles tailored to your own taste. The entertainment paired with the above-average driving performance revitalizes BMW's own slogan “The joy of driving”.

The battery, which weighs a good 600 kg and has a net capacity of 108,8 kWh, is intended to guarantee a distance of over 600 kilometers under optimal conditions. In the real winter in the north, with crisp frosts and a thick layer of snow, we of course drive through the winter landscapes with all the comfort features. Anyone who invests a good 107.900 euros (basic price) in the iX 50 will certainly not be constantly in “efficient mode”. This pushes the range in these extreme conditions to a real 350 kilometers with the best driving pleasure and a very safe driving feeling.

Emergency braking on a snowy road

On snowy and icy roads, permanent all-wheel drive is the panacea for safe and stable propulsion. During over 1.000 test kilometers under winter conditions, we particularly noticed the directional stability during emergency braking. What's also striking is the very well-designed autonomous driving system, which ensures that you stay in your lane, keep the distance to the vehicle in front and maintain your speed. It is activated very simply by activating it with the left thumb via touch. However, after a short time the hands on the steering wheel have to take over the controls again. Autonomous driving at level 2024 from BMW is expected to be implemented in the first vehicles in spring 3. When driving at speeds of up to 60 km/h, you should sometimes drive hands-free.

BMW iX xDrive50 - safe performance in winter
BMW iX xDrive50 – safe performance in winter

You can really enjoy autonomous driving on long distances and vacation trips. By switching between the driving modes, the selection of excellent sound elements and the massage functions, relaxed and luxurious driving is guaranteed. However, we had to accept some longer waiting times than expected at the various superchargers from different providers in winter. Despite active preconditioning of the battery for the charging stations, charging up to 80% SoC of the large-volume battery took a good 50 to 60 minutes. Maybe this can be improved with the next software updates.

Conclusion

With a base price of 107.900 euros for the version we drove, the iX50 is in the elite environment of luxury SUVs and has to compete with the competition from Tesla, Mercedes-Benz and Audi. In comparison, it performs above average in our test, especially in the areas of interior and operating comfort, driving safety and dynamics.

Addendum

Vehicle test winter 2023/24

How do you like the BMW iX?

N. Hawthorn
Last article by N. Hagedorn (Show All)

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