Should your new BMW SUV have 2WD or 4WD?

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Since the BMW X5 first debuted in the year 2000, BMW SUVs have always had standard four wheel drive. This changed with the 2013 model year when BMW began offering its smallest SUV, the X1, in two (BMW calls it sDrive) or four (xDrive) wheel drive configurations. BMW is now pursuing this two or four wheel drive strategy with its larger SUVs—the X5 added an sDrive variant with the 2014 model year, and the middle-sized X3 added it for the 2015 model year. In all cases, the sDrive option is only available with the smaller engine choice. So how are Cartelligent clients configuring their BMW SUVs?


X1: The X1 wasted no time at all and instantly became a popular choice for Cartelligent clients. People love its higher seating position than the popular 3 Series, and the fact that it’s small on the outside but big on the inside.

Here’s how they’re selling:

  • sDrive28i: 40% of clients choose two wheel drive. They save money and get better fuel economy. Starts at $30,900; 23 city/34 highway mpg.
  • xDrive28i: 60% of clients go for the added benefits of four wheel drive. Starts at $32,700; 22 city/32 highway mpg. 




X5: The X5 was completely redesigned for 2014, and continues to outsell its smaller X3 and X1 siblings amongst Cartelligent clients. With a long list of luxury features, family friendly size and top safety results, it’s easy to see why it remains so popular.

Here’s how the two vs. four wheel drive decision is being made:

  • sDrive35i: Just 8% of clients are selecting two wheel drive so far. Since the X5 is usually the family car pressed into service for vacations, most clients elect to spend the extra money for four wheel drive. Starts at $52,800; 19 city/27 highway mpg.
  • xDrive35i: 92% of clients opt for four wheel drive. They only give up 1 mpg in the city, with no penalty on the highway. Starts at $55,100; 18 city/27 highway mpg. 



X3: The X3 last underwent a major redesign in 2011, and while the same design soldiers on in 2015, the X3 now offers a two wheel drive option. It’s too early to tell how they’re selling to Cartelligent clients, so we’ll report back once we have some solid data to share.

Whether or not a new BMW SUV is the car for you, Cartelligent can help you get a great deal on exactly what you want. Call our team of car-buying experts at 888.427.4270 or get started today.