WATCH: Car of the week - BMW X6 M

Sport360 staff 19:06 22/12/2016
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Sport360 took the BMW X6 M for a spin.

Overall, this fully loaded X6 M is a stunning SUV, or Sports Activity Coupe, as BMW puts it, that demands your attention.

Whether you like the shape of the BMW X6 or not, and let’s face it, it’s not everybody’s cup of tea, you have to admit this vehicle has always had charisma.

Add a bit of M performance, a carbon-fibre body kit including an AC Schnitzer rear spoiler, an Akrapovic titanium, carbon-fibre tipped exhaust system, carbon diffusers, black kidney grille, and aerodynamic pack and you get one of the most menacing looking vehicles on the planet which looks like it is spoiling for a fight with Mad Max.

Okay, the red 22-inch Vorsteiner light alloy wheels are questionable – they would be much better in dark graphite I reckon – but overall this fully loaded X6 M is a stunning SUV, or Sports Activity Coupe, as BMW puts it, that demands your attention.

And it’s not just the way it looks that is impressive about this machine because sitting underneath that gorgeous bonnet beats the heart of a 4.4-litre twin turbo V8 engine which packs 575bhp and torque of 750nm, both of which are boosted a little by that Akrapovic exhaust system.

Fittingly, the word ‘dynamic’ features quite heavily in this vehicle and I am not just talking about the way it looks. The X6 M has Dynamic Performance Control which boosts the cars athleticism and makes it more precise. In a nutshell, it monitors driving conditions and distributes more torque to the outer rear wheel when driving through bends. It also has Dynamic Drive suspension which again reacts to driving conditions and ensures there is minimal body roll going through corners at speed.

This works in conjunction with the Dynamic Damper control which ensures you get the best performance depending on which drive mode you are in. There are three drive modes, comfort when the dampers react softly, Sport and Sport Plus when everything tightens up for a more sporty ride. You can also use M-drive to set the car up the way you like it. The interior of the car is pretty impressive too. Our test drive model, courtesy of Abu Dhabi Motors, had beautiful red leather sports seats, leather and piano black trim a sports steering wheel, and a 10.25-inch infotainment screen.

I hated these screens when they were first introduced a few years ago but it’s surprising what you get used to and this one looks pretty cool and certainly adds to the prestigious feel of the cabin. The BMW ConnectedDrive system is first class with an excellent sat-nav system, and an impressive array of driver assists including surround view camera, an infra red night vision system which picks up animals or pedestrians in the dark up to 300 metres away, plus such things as lane departure and blind spot alerts that you find in many vehicles these days.

The interior is very spacious although the sloping roof design means anyone over six foot might find the headroom a little restricted. The rear view mirror view out of the back is also not the best, although it is not a deal breaker.

So we have a head-turning car that looks like it is built for a warzone, stunning interior, and a big turbo charged engine with plenty of grunt, so what is it like to drive? Well, it would be a massive disappointment if a vehicle that looks like this and carries the BMW M badge didn’t deliver when it comes to performance and so, inevitably, it blew me away and probably scared everyone else who saw this intimidating machine approaching in their rear view mirror In Sport Plus mode this X6 performs like a sports car.

A front on view.

It weighs over two tons but has a 0-100kmh time of just over four seconds and the noise that comes from those tasty exhaust pipes is spectacular. The power seems endless all the way up to a top speed of 250kmh. All that grunt is put down to the superb xDrive four wheel drive system via an eight-speed steptronic gearbox with quick smooth shifts.

You can switch the car into manual mode using the gear lever or the paddle shifts for a bit more fun but generally the vehicle operates perfectly in auto. This car handles so beautifully that it would be an amazing experience to push it to its limits on a racing circuit and it is track ready for those who want to burn a little rubber without the fear of losing their driving licence.

This is one of those cars which is virtually impossible to fault and as you might expect it comes at a hefty price. With all the extra bits on this X6 M it was the centre of attention wherever it went which meant taking it out for a blast was a real event. As mentioned, I don’t like the red wheels because they look a bit OTT but there are other options, and other than that this X6M is an awesome bit of kit.


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