BMW revamp the X5

One of Chelsea’s favourite tractors is finally getting a revamp, with BMW announcing a new X5 for 2007.

To be fair to the much-maligned soft-roader, the X5 defined an entirely new segment in the car market - the Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV).

While few have ever questioned its on-road abilities, it’s off-road stature is actually far better than many have given it credit for. But seeing as the X5 rarely sees action outside the school run between mater and pater’s house in Fulham and the local prep in Kensington, it’s never been that crucial.

Amazingly, it’s been around for 7 years, so its refresh is rather overdue. The new X5 will come with options such as a Top Gun-esque head-up display, active suspension, active steering, parking camera, run-flat tyres and - absolutely vitally - a third row of seats, which more than any other factor should see sales rocket to the ionosphere.

Despite all the changes, the new X5 doesn't look all that different to the old one, even though its 19cm longer.

Initially available in just three engine specs - 3.0 litre diesel, 3.0 litre petrol and the quite bonkers 4.8-litre V8 - BMW are promising better economy and lower emissions than the existing models, although small forests and little kittens may still perish every time you floor the V8.

Thankfully, all this green nonsense hasn’t affected power. The 3.0d from can hit 62mph in 8.3 seconds, the 3.0i in 8.1 seconds, and the V8 in just 6.5 seconds before going on to a top speed of 150mph (when fitted with the Dynamic Package) - that’s quicker than a Range Rover Sport or Merc ML500 Sport.

And that makes it one of the fastest living rooms on wheels.