In early 2007, luxury SUV enthusiasts were thrilled about the release of the BMW E70 X5. This update to the original E53 X5 introduced many technological upgrades, a larger interior, and an optional third row seat, which raised the passenger capacity from four to seven—a first for BMW. Even though BMW just rolled out the new model (F15) in late 2013, the E70 X5’s strong production run from 2007-2013 still shows via its presence on the road. Occasionally, some E70 owners complain of bouncy or noisy suspensions.
The E70 X5 uses a type of independent suspension system known as “double wishbone suspension,” instead of the traditional MacPherson suspension. This is in order to install a third row of seating the engineers needed to toss the spare tire, which in turn required them to adopt run-flats (puncture-proof tires). Run-flats bring with them a harsher ride, so the engineers at BMW opted for the wishbone—a more costly, but more comfortable suspension than the MacPherson.
Most owners who experience a suspension problem find it occurring after 40,000 miles. Going over speed bumps may sound like driving through potholes, and the rear of the car may sag considerably. The once smooth ride becomes jerky and bouncy, with every flaw or patch on the road translated into the seats. Sometimes the warning light comes on, but often the car itself doesn’t show any indication of a problem.
There is no obvious solution to an issue like this. It could be that the front thrust arms, the bushings, or maybe the shocks themselves need replacing. Regardless, self-diagnosis can only lead so far, and it is always best to bring your E70 to an authorized local BMW service expert. They will get you back on the road in no time.
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