really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
34,720 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.

2012 BMW X5 steering problems

steering problem

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2012 BMW X5 Owner Comments

problem #8

Dec 162016


  • 78,311 miles


In 2012 a recall was issued for this car and the work was performed at the dealer. On 12/16/2016 the steering failed wile the car was in operation. It was returned to the dealership for repair on the same part as before. My investigation showed there were more than one steering failure in that time period concerning the same model, engine and everything but a 2011 model. I paid out of pocket to have the repairs completed because I need transportation, however BMW is claiming that once the work is completed and after time of warranty they are no longer responsible. I feel this is a serious safety concern and BMW will bill customers for the work even if they are replacing the equipment with faulty parts. I was fortunate that I wasn't driving fast and the weather was nice or I could have had a serious accident with no steering..

- Dover, DE, USA

problem #7

May 012016

X5 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
Shudder or vibration felt on steering with front wheels turned to right or left. Vibration felt when moving forward from a stop position or backing up with front wheels turn to either side. I initially thought it was the tires but it is getting worst even with the new tires.

- San Bruno, CA, USA

problem #6

Aug 162016


  • miles
The contact owns a 2012 BMW X5. The contact stated that the check engine, brake light, and tire pressure warning indicators illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the oil pan gasket and power steering pump had leaked and needed to be replaced. The contact had the software updated; however, the power steering pump and oil pan gasket were not replaced. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was not provided.

- Acworth, GA, USA

problem #5

Aug 182015


  • 61,000 miles


The contact owns a 2012 BMW X5. While driving at 15 mph, the instrument panel lights illuminated and the vehicle stalled. The vehicle was towed to the contact's residence. The contact also mentioned that the power steering belt failed. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 61,000.

- Hidden Valley Lake , CA, USA

problem #4

Jun 092015


  • 48,000 miles
Tried to complete a 3-point turn into a parking space when placing vehicle from reverse into drive, the vehicle unassisted it acceleration and would not brake nor steer; thus causing myself to crash head on into a concrete barrier.

- Chicago , IL, USA

problem #3

Sep 202014

X5 6-cyl

  • 30,296 miles
While idling in the middle of the night, a roaring noise all of a sudden started underneath the car. As I started moving, the noise seemed to follow the engine acceleration and got louder. The steering wheel started getting harder to manipulate and the noise got louder at each steer. I was in a different state, about 40 miles from my house. By the time I got to my house, the steering wheel was almost impossible to maneuver. I parked the car to take it to the dealer the next morning. That morning, when I started the car for the dealer, the noise was like a cracking noise and the steering wheel was stuck. I called roadside assistance to tow the car to the BMW of manhattan dealer. Among other things, they found: Power steering reservoir empty, connections on pressure return lines leaking, gaskets seals leaking. After they fixed the car, I started having steering issues. The steering wheel now has an extremely wide play, the car is rocking at the slightest bump, pulling left or right when braking. Moreover, when on a highway at about 55mph, any rough or path hole would throw the car on a zig zag and I have to fight with the steering wheel to keep the car from veering onto other cars running by. I returned the car 3 times to the same dealer, 10/07 and 10/23 and after keeping the car for days, they say cannot replicate my complaint. In the meantime, I sent them countless of explicative emails and copied BMW customer service to no avail. I had to go to open road BMW of Edison NJ on 12/0314, 2/13/15 and at the 3rd time on 3/31/15 and at 34,500 miles, they found out this: Excessive play inside steering rack, dropped subframe, bled the system, replaced steering rack. On 4/3/- 4/5/15, I am still having sudden pulls on braking and uneven roads I learned BMW recalled 2009- 2012 X5D sav vehicles for steering wheels issues. My car is Jan 2012. It has never been recalled.

- Plainfield, NJ, USA

problem #2

Dec 192012

X5 6-cyl

  • 150 miles
While driving the front wheels will automatically follow a rut in the road causing the vehicle to swerve unexpectedly to the left or right. My wife had rheumatoid arthritis in her hands and cannot drive the vehicle for fear of an accident. When we test drove the vehicle the dealer gave us a different model without the aggressive suspension - the vehicle drive beautifully. When we arrived back at the dealership the dealer had this model on the floor and offered us a "deal" to purchase it. However, they did not make us aware of the profound difference in the handling. Now at 7000 miles the front tires need to be replaced. Dealer says we may have hit a curb. I searched online and found another owner who complained about the same problem. According to his letter he was on the way home after purchasing the vehicle and it "took off all over the road." He drove back to the dealership to advise them that the vehicle was dangerous. He finally, with approximately 5000 miles traded the vehicle in. We asked the dealer if they would trade it for the model we test drove. They said because it was registered they would only give us $45K. We had just paid $62K for it. My daughter recently borrowed the car, and decided it was too unsafe to drive. There is something terribly wrong with the steering/suspension on the X5 sport activity. Please look into to it. We fear that when driving on the freeway, we will eventually collide with a passing vehicle due the problem. My wife simply refuses to drive the car citing it is simply too dangerous - she is right! on the website "tire rack" there is a disproportionate number of X5 owners who are fuming about tire wear on the subject vehicle. Most seem to achieve no more than 10K miles.

- Cottonwood Heights, UT, USA

problem #1

Jan 042012

X5 8-cyl

  • miles
The vehicle sporadically suffers from engine failure when executing a sharp turn. This has happened so far on three separate and distinct instances during its first 1,000 miles of service, under the operation of two different drivers, with several passenger witnesses on one occasion. When these failures happen, the vehicle engine stalls or otherwise shuts itself off, which leads to loss of power steering in mid-turn and loss of braking. The only way to recover control of the vehicle is to let it coast to a stop, then put the vehicle in park, then push the ignition button to re-start the car.

- Sugar Land, TX, USA

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