really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
44,251 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2011 BMW X5 steering problems

steering problem

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2011 BMW X5 Owner Comments

problem #8

Jan 112016


  • 60,000 miles


The contact owns a 2011 BMW X5. The contact stated that while driving at approximately 40 mph, the steering wheel became difficult to turn after the engine and battery warning indicators illuminated. The contact restarted the vehicle however the failure persisted. The vehicle was towed to the contacts residence and was examined by an independent mechanic, who diagnosed that the idler pulley bolt had fractured and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The contact referenced NHTSA campaign number: 12V550000 (engine and engine cooling, steering) however, the VIN was not included. The approximate failure mileage was 60,000.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #7

Aug 102015


  • miles
The contact owns a 2011 BMW X5. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, the steering wheel was difficult to turn. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The VIN was not included in the NHTSA campaign number: 11V332000 (engine, engine cooling). The failure mileage was unknown.

- Greenville , SC, USA

problem #6

Jun 142015


  • 63,000 miles
Traveling South on inside lane of 121 near grapevine, my X5 suddenly made a really loud noises from the front left side, started losing power, liquid was spewing behind me and smoke coming out from underneath. I pulled over and saw oil gushing from the bottom of my 2011 X5. I had my 8 month old infant and my wife in the car, had to rush them out of the infant seat to ensure car does not catch on fire. Spend 2 hours waiting for tow and in the end it ended up being an front driveshaft breaking puncturing an oil pan and cutting few hoses and lines. There is an active recall on that BMW for that exact issue...updated 07/30/15

- Lewisvlle, TX, USA

problem #5

Feb 242015


  • 74,450 miles


It feel like the car was vibrating while I was driving on the highway I took the exit so I can pull over and it started making clanking sound under the driver seat...when checked under the car drive shaft is missing screw as it came off and hitting the ground and car is not driveable...not sure what causes it. It could've killed us if I didn't exit as the highway was very busy and I am glad I pulled over. Reading on internet hong kong and europe have recall on this but I didn't see any recalls for this us...updated 06/01/16

- Puyallup, WA, USA

problem #4

Nov 152014


  • 52,560 miles
The contact owns a 2011 BMW X5. While driving 55 mph, the steering wheel became difficult to turn and the engine stalled. The check engine and brake warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic. The technician diagnosed that the idle pulley bar and belt needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 52,560.

- Glenview, IL, USA

problem #3

Dec 312013


  • 30,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 BMW X5. The contact stated that the steering wheel would sporadically become difficult to turn. Additionally, there was an electrical failure within the instrument panel. The failure was recurring. The check engine warning light was also illuminated whenever the contact reversed from his driveway. The contact also stated that the vehicle could not be shifted from park to reverse or drive. The vehicle was towed twice to an authorized dealer, who diagnosed that the idle pulley bolt needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired however, the failure recurred twice. The authorized dealer replaced the idler pulley belt a third time and the vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 30,000.

- Charlottesville, VA, USA

problem #2

Jun 122012

X5 6-cyl Diesel

  • 15,000 miles
Our 2011 BMW X5D (diesel) started having steering issues in Jun of 2012. Multiple repair attempts have been unsuccessful. Later it was involved in a low speed crash, injuring the driver in Dec 2012 due to a sudden loss of power steering. This was just months before issuing a recall for the identical problem although BMW identified problems before the initial problem was noticed. The vehicle still to this day has a problem with the sudden loss of power steering, difficult low speed maneuvers and unusual tire wear. We do have a recording of a BMW of North America master technician admitting to the problem that BMW refuses to correct. In fact BMW refuses to even perform work on our vehicle even though it's advertised as "no maintenance for 4years/50,000 miles" this is at any dealership we have gone to due to a note in the database from BMW of North America. Also vehicle service history has been fraudulently erased from their database and BMW refuses to further investigate the safety of this vehicle which was purchased new in 2010 and is still under full factory warranty. They insist the vehicle is safe to drive officially, while unofficially admitting that it is dangerous.

- Merritt Island, FL, USA

problem #1

Jun 162013


  • 59,000 miles
While driving my engine suddenly shut off along with power steering and power brakes. It started again and I took it to a BMW dealer that said I needed a $325 software update. I asked if that meant my engine would shut off while driving should by software ever go out of date. They said yes, it happens but not on all software updates. They also said software update come out about every 3 to 4 months meaning my engine could be shut off again at any time. I felt I had no choice but to pay the money so my car would run again. I am concerned now about driving at any higher rate of speed considering I could lose my steering and brakes anytime someone decides I need to update software that I was never informed was out of date.

- Sunset Hills, MO, USA

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