Slight rear-end redesign enables big-rig hauling capability for BMW
Engineers have added a great deal more credibility to the ‘utility’ aspect of BMW’s SUVs, by announcing a 30% increase in towing capacity for the brand’s luxury gravel travel vehicles.
All three of BMW’s new large SUVs – X5, X6 and X7 – have been technically reinforced to meet Australia’s increasingly stringent design rule requirements.
Some of the most stringent homologation requirements in the world are found in the Australian automotive market. BMW realised that its hugely powerful engines available in the X5, X6 and X7 were being underutilised by customers who wanted to tow horseboxes or watercraft.
Responding to the Australian towing regulation challenge was not a momentary decision. Engineers at BMW have been working for nearly five years to find a solution for boosting the tow-capacity of its CLAR platform SUVs.
Customers Down Under will now have the choice to option a strengthened aft section for their X5, X6 or X7, which supports a tow ball and wiring harness unique to the design. The entire upgrade increases tow capacity from 2.7t to 3.5t and positions BMW’s large SUVs as serious heavy hauling alternatives to some very robust legacy off-road SUVs.
Other vehicles which feature 3.5t towing capacity are Toyota’s Land Cruiser 200 and Range Rover’s Vogue, both of which are traditional luxury SUVs with proven off-road exploration pedigree and low-range gearing.
Although the upgraded tow-capacity X5, X6 and X7 are only being launch for the Australian market at first, it would make a very appropriate South African product evolution too – consider the similar road conditions and towing requirements of customers in both markets. And of course, the convergences in both markets being right-hand drive.