The BMW X5 E53 series is the base model for all models built from 1999 to 2006. The E53 is the first Sports Activity Vehicle or SAV produced by the German vehicle manufacturer BMW, or as the BMW abreviation stands for; Bavarian Motor Works.

The E53 was replaced by the BMW E70 series of vehicles which was then called the BMW SAV line up of vehicles named, Sports Activity Vehicle or SAV. The E53 line of SAV’s was developed when BMW still owned Land Rover and therefore the vehicles share many components and designs with both the Range Rover L322 model and the BMW E39 5-series which amounts to the engines and electronic on-board systems found in these vehicles today.

Although BMW has many different designs of vehicles on the market today the company must be credited for ingenuity for developing cars such as these and especially for interchanging parts the way they periodically do. The entire in-car entertainment system i.e the radio function, navigation system and television systems are shared with other BMW’s and the Range Rover L322.

As a result the E53 X5 model and the Range rover L322 can be easily upgraded with the newest BMW technologies available. These parts can be found at automotive scrap yards and BMW spares suppliers around the country. A qualified BMW shop should be able to map systems such as these if the system can be located and purchased at a good price.

The history of the X5 began in 1994, when ideas began on a BMW sports utility vehicle after the acquisition of Land Rover. In August 1996, BMW sent a group of designers headed by Chris Bangle to Malibu, California to gather and research the possibility of such a vehicle for production. After 5 months of design work, and by February 1997 design work was completed and the design basis for the BMW X5 (E53) was signed off for production and the takeover of Rover proved to be very beneficial for BMW. The development of the X5 was largely inspired by Rover and now BMW engineers were able to look to the implementation of Rang Rover technology and parts in the X5’s development.

In many respects, the design of the X5 was influenced by its English counterpart as the X5 got the two-piece tailgate from the Range Rover and many electronics and other important parts pertinent to the development of the X5 were also taken directly from the BMW E39 to save costs.

the X5 was designed much on the drive-lines of the range rover as an all-wheel-drive vehicle. BMW chose from the start to route 62% of the engine's power to the rear wheels, making it feel as close as possible to the company's rear-wheel drive sedans.

BMW X5 E53 engine variations included 4.4 and 4.6 litre VANOS engines.


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