When it comes to large size coolers, there are plenty to choose from. One of our favorites is the BMX 52 Quart cooler from Igloo.
A cooler this size (around 50 quarts) is great for an extended road trip or a few days away camping. Or simply a big party in your yard! The Igloo brand is well known for its cooler products and has a range of hard and soft-sided models, with the BMX range being very popular (ranging from the smallest BMX 25 cooler to the larger BMX 72).
Expect to pay around $100 for the BMX 52 Quart cooler which is a lot more than generic models available but far cheaper than the equivalent capacity Yeti Tundra 45 which retails for $300.
So how does the Igloo BMX 52 cooler compare?
Last update on 2024-01-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
The BMX 52 is pretty similar to the larger Igloo BMX 72, both in terms of looks and specification. Even though the 52 is a lower-priced model it is still a great specified cooler. We are real fans of this tough-look style of cooler, and the BMX 52 backs up its heavy-duty styling with heavy-duty blow moulded construction and thick insulated walls (although not as thick as the more expensive Yeti models).
Igloo quotes an ice retention time for the BMX 52 of 5 days, so if you take your items straight out of the freezer and into the cooler, then you’ll likely achieve this.
Like the larger BMX 72, the BMX 52 has a hinged lid which is both sturdy and aids single-handed operation. The hinges are also designed to work hard, but if you do manage to break them then a range of spare parts are available from the Igloo website.
Capacity, dimensions and weight
At 52 quarts, this BMX model has a generous capacity that is equivalent to 83 12oz cans. Plenty of space then for a few days away.
Externally, the BMX 52 measures 26″ (length) and approximately 16″ in both depth and height. So although it’s shorter in length than the BMX 72, it’s only an inch shorter in height and width.
Weight is 16lbs unloaded, which is only 3 pounds less than the large 72 model. As the BMX 52 is more compact, your more likely be able to fit in in the trunk of a smaller car. Those with larger cars and trucks will have no issues with loading.
At a push, this cooler can be handled (safely) by one person. The BMX 52 has neat swing-up handles with rubber groups that provide extra protection when carrying. As with the larger BMX 72 model, the handles have steel reinforcement to save them giving way when lugging heavier loads.
It’s good to see that Igloo has carried a lot of the features over from the BMX 72 to its smaller and cheaper cousin. The T-latch rubber catches add to the tough appearance (and make it look like a cheaper Yeti), there are tie-down loops to keep it secure in your trunk and plenty of patterned stainless steel to provide both style and more importantly, protection.
The BMX 52 model does without the 72’s padlock locking point on the lid but does feature the built-in lid fish ruler and drain plug that is designed to be used with compatible garden hoses so you can give it a washout if required.
We are fans of the more rugged-looking coolers (although we appreciate that these might not appeal to all) and the BMX 52 from Igloo is no exception. It’s great that they have carried over a lot of the styling from the larger BMX 72 along with its useful features.
The Igloo BMX 52 is a great value model when compared to more generic-looking coolers of this size and it should definitely be one that you add to your cooler shopping list.