BMW iX xDrive50 2022 Review

The BMW iX is the company's biggest foray into the world of electric SUVs, with a cabin that's more luxurious, a badge that's more prestigious, and a look that's more divisive than anything else that's ever come out of Munich.

And it has certainly piqued the interest of the rest of the world. The iX's two oversized kidney grills were mocked when it first debuted, but in person, they blend in nicely with the overall design. They increase the car's height and emphasize its frontal silhouette, giving it a strong presence on the road. The back is particularly well-contoured, with slim lights that don't appear to carry or be inspired by BMW's history, but they look good, as do the rose-gold-like trim elements.

The interior is a different story, and we believe the iX truly leads the EV segment here. There's a lot going on, but there's also a lot going on. The layout is especially clean, colorful, and crisp in this red on red spec. The new dual screens are mounted beneath a piece of curved glass on the expansive dashboard, which effectively emphasizes the cabin's width. All of the high-traffic areas are lined with soft leather, and there's beautiful glass switchgear for the seat controls and infotainment dials, making the iX feel more expensive than it is. Brands like Bentley and Aston Martin are known for their high-quality materials.

The wood inlay on the center console is a lovely touch because it cleverly integrates the real buttons underneath, creating a flush and cleaner design. Though its odd tactile shape and grips take some getting used to, the moderately sized steering wheel looks great and is much slimmer than BMW's current examples. The airy cabin is enhanced by the passthrough tunnel between the front seats, which allows for a deep and spacious center console large enough to accommodate my Canon 6D SLR camera. Above the rotary dial, there's also a dedicated phone cubby. The back cabin is just as roomy, with its own climate controls and USB ports built into the front seatbacks. The sunroof isn't retractable, so headroom and legroom are excellent, on par with the X5. That means it won't take up any valuable overhead space.

This leads to a few minor quibbles. It's a shame there isn't a retractable sunroof, but it is electrochromatic, similar to the Mercedes SL, and changes from clear to frosted at the touch of a button. The rear windows only open about halfway, which is inconvenient for those who want to get some fresh air. There is no front trunk, just like the BMW i4. The seating position is also unusual and out of the ordinary for a BMW SUV. The iX makes you feel like you're sitting on top of the SUV rather than inside of it, but the steering wheel telescopes a long way towards the driver, ensuring a comfortable seating position for pilots of all sizes.

So, how does it fare in terms of range? BMW claims that the iX xDrive50 can travel 521 kilometers on a single charge. That's more than the Audi e-tron Sportback (351 km), Porsche Taycan 4S (320 km), Volvo C40 Recharge (334 km), Ford Mustang Mach-E AWD (435 km), and Tesla Model X (435 km), but only a few clicks short of the Tesla Model X. (536 km). Our own testing of the iX in a Canadian climate with temperatures below ten degrees Celsius yielded 466 kilometers. The cabin was also set to a constant 21 degrees Celsius, with the heated steering wheel and seats turned on.

A 105.2 kWh lithium-ion battery pack powers the iX, which drives two electric motors, one on each axle for all-wheel drive. The xDrive50 has a total output of 523 hp and 564 lb-ft of torque, and can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds. That's faster than a Golf R from Volkswagen. Not bad for a hulking SUV that's heavier than a Toyota Tundra. But if that's not enough, BMW offers an M60 version of the iX with 610 horsepower and a 0-100 km/h time of 3.8 seconds, which is faster than BMW's own M3. That should happen later this year.

With strong brakes and three levels of braking regeneration, the iX stops just as well. You can't adjust them with a dedicated button or paddle shifters, so you'll have to go into the display menu. Instead, BMW offers an Adaptive Mode, which detects obstacles in front of the vehicle and adjusts the amount of regen required on the fly. It performs admirably. When approaching a red light with cars in front of you, the iX will switch to maximum regen, whereas coasting at highway speeds will use the least amount of regen to keep rolling resistance to a minimum.

The handling is average. Even with its low center of gravity, we didn't expect much from this heavy SUV. While the iX's exit speed is always good thanks to the electric motors' instant torque, it never feels particularly agile when the road starts to snake. But, even with the optional 22-inch wheels, it's very maneuverable in small and tight spaces thanks to the rear wheel steering system, which reduces its footprint and adds a lot of high-speed stability and road comfort.

The iX, like the i4, emits artificial electric noises in the cabin, which vary depending on the driving mode selected. The sounds are quiet and subdued by default, but in Sport Mode, they ramp up to deep, heart-wrenching tones. If these sounds sound familiar, it's because Hans Zimmer created them for BMW.

The BMW iX is a fantastic vehicle that effectively places BMW in the competitive EV market. Its spacious cabin adds a lot of utility, as does its excellent driving range, which is right up there with Tesla's best. The iX may not be the agile corner carver that some would expect from a BMW, but its brisk acceleration and meticulously crafted interior more than compensate.


  • Model: 2022 BMW iX xDrive50
  • Paint Type: Aventurine Red Metallic III
  • Base Price: $89,990
  • Price as Tested: $117,690
  • Wheelbase(mm): 3,000
  • Length/Width/Height (mm): 4,953 / 1,967 / 1,696
  • Curb weight (kg): 2,567
  • Powertrain: 105.2 kWh lithium ion battery, two electric synchronous AC motors
  • Horsepower: 536 hp
  • Torque: 586 lb-ft
  • Transmission: Single-speed automatic
  • Engine & Drive Configuration: Front engine, AWD
  • Estimated Range: 521 km
  • Observed Range: 466 km

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