BMW touts its 30-year-plus history of building factory armored vehicles, and the X5 Security is said to be indistinguishable on the outside from a standard X5, all the better to transport dignitaries and secret agents incognito. All controls for the X5 Security's extra functionality are said to be integrated artfully into its luxurious cabin.
The extra protection, claims BMW, is aimed at threats posed by robbery, kidnapping, or carjacking. To protect its occupants from these criminal activities, the X5 Security offers "extensive protection from such attacks." The armored passenger compartment is bulletproof, withstanding assaults from handguns up to .44 caliber, including .357 Magnum or 9mm Luger. The vehicle complies with requirements of the VR4 ballistic protection level, and BMW specified ballistic tests that went beyond conventional requirements for armored vehicles.
Materials for the passenger compartment include high-performance fiber-reinforced material as well as reinforced bulletproof steel in key areas. Windows are reinforced with a polycarbonate layer that protects passengers from shattered glass, and the trunk area has extra reinforcement and is barred by a fully armored two-part trunk lid. An intercom system and assault alarm allow communication with individuals outside the vehicle without opening doors or windows. Upon activation of the assault alarm, all windows and doors are locked, and both audio and visual alarms are engaged.