- the bmw x5 protection vr6 is an armor-plated version of its x5 crossover designed to offer protection against violent attacks, kidnapping, and organized crime.
- the interior offers passengers an extremely high level of protection against attacks with firearms and/or explosive devices.
- bmw claims the x5's drivability with all this equipment is almost indistinguishable from the production model.
we know what you want out of your luxury crossover. you want comfort. you want performance. you want protection against anti-infantry hand grenades. well, bmw has the ride for you!
although it looks like the standard model, the new x5 protection vr6's armor-plated bodywork protects against attacks by handguns and firearms, including ak-47s. the armored passenger compartment withstands blasts of up to 15 kilograms of tnt from a distance of 13 feet, and its post blast protective technology protects against secondary attacks; even following a blast, all windows remain firmly in position.
the vehicle is fitted with high-strength steel panels in the doors, side frames, roof, and firewall. overlapping armor plating within the door gaps and bodywork joints prevent penetration by bullets or fragments. oh, and your suitcases will be safe as well, thanks to aluminum pieces guarding the underbody and luggage compartment.
still not convinced this brawny bimmer will keep you from harm? consider that the armor-plated floor offers protection against hand grenades, and an extensively armored roof—available as a special option—will keep you safe from drone attacks. (it's 2019, so, yes, drone attacks.) run-flat tires with reinforced sidewalls keep you moving even if there’s a total loss of pressure, and a special sheathing closes the fuel tank automatically after an attack to prevent fuel spillage.
bmw claims that, even this beefed up, the armored crossover will still drive like a bmw, thanks to its specially calibrated suspension and brakes that take into account the increased weight compared with that of the production model. bmw's 4.4-liter twin-turbo v-8, with 523 horsepower and 553 lb-ft of torque, should provide enough power for a quick getaway. the x5 protection vr6 has a claimed zero-to-62-mph time of 5.9 seconds and a top speed electronically limited to 131 mph.
the armored x5 will be built in spartanburg, south carolina, alongside the other x5 models. how much will it cost? bmw hasn't released pricing. but for rough-comparison purposes, a similarly equipped vehicle, the addarmor cadillac executive escalade b6, goes for $350,000.
so, who is this thing for, exactly? anyone who needs protection against violent attacks, kidnapping, and organized crime, says bmw. if you fall into that category, give the x5 protection vr6—and perhaps your life—a good, hard look.