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Trailer Hitch, Wiring & Brake Controller for 2012 BMW X5


Hello - I have a 2012 BMW X5d. What would you recommend for a trailer and wiring harness? I dont plan on towing anything major, perhaps the 19ft Airstream and tow another car every now and again. Is the installation very difficult? Thank you.


Expert Reply:

Both of the 2-inch Class III hitches we have for your 2012 BMW X5, Draw-Tite # 75600 and Curt # 13077, are fairly involved installations as hitches go. The linked video illustrates the installation of the Draw-Tite hitch on a 2012 X5. This hitch is rated for a maximum towing capacity of 6000-lbs but you will want to check your BMW owner's manual to confirm the towing capacity for your particular X5d as equipped from the factory. Engine and transmission options can affect a vehicle's towing capacity and if the vehicle and hitch are rated for different capacities then the lower-rated item determines overall towing capacity.

For a 4-pole wiring harness you can use Tekonsha kit # 119190KIT. This hardwired harness, shown in the linked video, will require splicing into the car's wiring. If you prefer a no-splice option then you can consider the ZCI zero-contact harness # 119250KIT. This kit costs more because requires no cutting into the car's wiring and it can be removed and re-installed in almost any vehicle should that need arise. Ferrite sensors in the snap-on clamps detect signals in the vehicle wires; this avoids the need to cut into them.

Either of these 4-pole harnesses will provide trailer lighting functions but if you intend to tow a trailer with brakes, and/or pull another vehicle on a tow dolly like # RM-2050-1, you will need a 7-way trailer socket and a brake controller, the Curt Echo # C51180. To convert a 4-pole harness to the required 7-way type you will also need our 7-way kit # ETBC7L.

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