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BMW sDrive vs. xDrive: What's the Difference?

2021 BMW X2

Comparing BMW sDrive vs. xDrive can help you get more enjoyment out of every adventure, but which configuration is right for you? BMW xDrive AWD offers more control and faster acceleration in exchange for slightly lower fuel economy, and many drivers feel that the trade-off is more than fair. Compare the two drivelines in detail and find out which systems are available on your favorite new BMW models today.

BMW sDrive: 2WD with Torque Vectoring Technology

BMW sDrive is the brand’s unique take on traditional two-wheel drive systems. Here’s what you should know before you take an sDrive model out on the roads of St Paul or Minneapolis:

  • Like other two-wheel drive systems, sDrive transmits power to two of your four wheels.
  • Unlike traditional 2WD, it prepares you to conquer curves and sharp turns with its torque vectoring capability.
  • Most sDrive models utilize rear-wheel drive, which is generally preferred by performance enthusiasts. However, certain models, including the BMW X2, offer sDrive with front-wheel drive instead.
  • Since only two of your wheels will receive power at any given moment, models with sDrive tend to offer higher fuel economy than models with BMW xDrive.

BMW xDrive: Adaptive Symmetric AWD

Curious about BMW AWD technology? BMW xDrive can direct power to all four wheels, and the system adapts instantly to a loss of traction or changes in road conditions. Here’s a closer look at the features that set it apart from BMW sDrive and make it superior to all-wheel drive systems from other manufacturers:

  • The inclusion of torque vectoring technology and an electronically-actuated clutch pack differential allow xDrive to direct its power wherever it’s most needed. 
  • In contrast to BMW sDrive, BMW xDrive can immediately direct excess power to the front or the rear of the vehicle, compensating for a loss of traction before you ever notice the difference. 
  • The system works in concert with Dynamic Stability Control, which moves power toward the left or the right of the vehicle in order to keep you in command.

BMW xDrive AWD is just one of the exciting features that are exclusive to the BMW lineup. Learn more about the brand to get a better sense of what sets these vehicles apart.

Which Models are Available with BMW xDrive and BMW sDrive?

xDrive is either standard or optional on almost every model in the lineup. sDrive is standard on certain models, but some vehicles (including most BMW coupes and sedans) deliver a simpler 2WD system as standard. Those shopping for a BMW SAV® will be glad that they compared BMW sDrive vs. xDrive in detail, since most models in the X Series lineup offer both technologies. 

  • 2 Series – Available xDrive
  • 3 Series – Available xDrive
  • 4 Series – Available xDrive
  • 5 Series – Available xDrive
  • 7 Series – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • 8 Series – Available xDrive
  • Z4 Roadster – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • I8 – Standard xDrive
  • M5 – Standard xDrive
  • M8 – Standard xDrive
  • X1 – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • X2 – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • X3 – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • X4 – Standard xDrive
  • X5 – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • X6 – Standard sDrive, available xDrive
  • X7 – Standard xDrive
  • X3 M – Standard xDrive
  • X4 M – Standard xDrive
  • X5 M – Standard xDrive
  • X6 M – Standard xDrive

Compare BMW sDrive vs. xDrive with a Test Drive!

Reading about the advantages offered by BMW xDrive is one thing. Experiencing them for yourself is another! Find out how to shop and buy online or explore our new vehicle specials today. It’s easy to take the next steps from your home in Bloomington or Richfield.

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