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BMW demonstrates the prowess of its xDrive all-wheel drive system across its SUV range with the BMW Destination X Bromo Driving Experience 2017.

18 May 2017

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The last time we visited Mount Bromo with BMW back in 2014, we discovered how the then-new BMW X5 proved to be a capable all-rounder for tackling the challenges that this scenic Indonesian volcano posed.

2017 marks the third edition of the BMW Destination X Mount Bromo Driving Experience, after a one year hiatus
How about the rest of the range though? BMW's full complement of Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs), from the X1 to the X6, all feature BMW's xDrive all-wheel drive technology, to ensure optimum road-holding ability in the toughest of conditions, on and off the road. But to find out how well they cope in the real world, we head back to Mount Bromo for the BMW Destination X Bromo Driving Experience 2017.

This is the third edition of the Mount Bromo experience that BMW has organised since 2014, with the event skipping one year in 2016 due to the volcano erupting then. This particular event saw six groups, comprising of BMW staff, regional journalists and customers, descending in Surabaya over two weeks, in one of the biggest such events BMW has ever held.

The event is as much a technical one, where we get to discover the abilities of the BMW X cars, as it is a cultural one, with BMW Asia hoping that driveaway events such as these will allow its partners, media friends and customers experience even more of Asia and its vast cultural heritage.

Navigating Indonesian traffic in the X5 proved to be a hectic experience, even with the presence of a police escort
Hustling out

The adventure started with a leisurely drive out of Surabaya, Indonesia's second biggest city and capital of the East Java province where Mount Bromo is located. Our chosen ride for this section of the police convoy-led drive was the X5 xDrive35i, BMW's full-size SUV that seemed ideal for a long road trip like these.

While the X5 ferried us in comfort and opulence, thanks to its excellent ride and all-round luxury, tackling the hectic Indonesian city traffic was quite the challenge, even with a police escort leading the way. For those who are used to the orderly business in more organised cities, driving in Indonesia can be an eye-opening experience, filled with constant dodging of motorcycles and driving against traffic flow.

Despite the X5's car-like driving demeanour, its sizeable footprint meant that it demanded full focus from the driver in order to navigate out of the chaos and avoid running over the local population.

The narrow and winding roads leading up to Mount Bromo were a real test of driver skill in the full-sized BMW X5 and X6
Tight and twisty

Midway through the four-hour drive from Surabaya to the Mount Bromo resort where we would be staying at, we hopped out of the X5 to the equally large X6 xDrive35i. The second part of the drive involved tackling the narrow and winding mountain roads leading up to the resort, which posed yet more challenges for BMW's flagship sports SUV.

Some of the country lanes were barely wide enough for one car, and yet it was still two-way traffic, resulting in some very tense and nervous manoeuvres along the treacherous mountain roads when faced with oncoming cars. Still, the X6 managed to make it through, though with some very close shaves, and we all breathed a sigh of relief when we finally made it to our resort.
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bmw  xdrive  mount bromo  bmw destination x  x3  x4  x5  x6  bromo driving experience