2009 BMW X6 Performance
This performance review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.
The 2009 BMW X6's trump card is its sports car-like performance, which is especially unique considering that it's an SUV. All trims come standard with BMW's xDrive all-wheel-drive system.
- "It will come as little surprise that the X6 is a very good driver. It has much more in common with a sport sedan than with any SUV, with typically BMW traits: direct steering, strong brakes, firm damping, and superb body control." -- Automobile Magazine
- "What separates the X6 from others of its ilk is that it really backs up the claim to be what BMW likes to call a Sport Activity Vehicle, with performance numbers well beyond the realm of reasonable for ordinary SUVs. Looking at the data, you can see that the X6 matches up with the much-lauded 335i." -- Road and Track
- "Underway, the X6 is an opulent experience for four adults. Power is fluid and seamless, while handling and control is more like a precision tool in the grasp of an experienced craftsman. Spirited cornering is virtually flat at even elevated speeds." -- Minneapolis Star Tribune
Acceleration and Power
The base xDrive35i model features a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine, while the xDrive50i comes with a 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V8. Test drivers offered praise for both engines. According to the EPA, the X6 xDrive35i should net 15/20 mpg city/highway, while the xDrive50i nets 12/18 mpg.
- "Six-cylinder or V8, any X6 has strong acceleration from a stop and in highway passing and merging. Neither engine shows any noticeable turbo lag. BMW estimates for 0-60 mph acceleration are 6.5 seconds for the xDrive35i and 5.3 seconds for the xDrive50i." -- Consumer Guide
- "The six-speed transmission is a slick shifter, either as an automatic or manually shifted with paddles on the steering wheel." -- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
- "This twin-turbo 6 is such a smooth, delectable source of motivation that it could be used to power a dentist's drill and you'd be happy to climb into that chair and pry open your mouth." -- The New York Times
- "The X6 xDrive 50i is smooth and stealthy fast. Triple-digit speeds come so easily, the X6 could be citation machine for the lead-footed. On highways, the X6 cossets you in such style and comfort, it feels, well, kind of slow. Then you look down and find you're doing double the speed limit." -- Motor Trend
- "When I say the X6 drives like I car, I don't mean that it's car-like -- I mean it drives almost exactly like a car. I drove the X6 on highways, back roads, and wet and dry racetracks, and aside from a slight on-center numb spot in the steering, the X6 feels like a very tall BMW 3-series. Amazing." -- About.com
Handling and Braking
The 2009 X6 features a double wishbone front suspension, lightweight multi-link integral rear suspension, engine-speed-sensitive power steering and four-wheel anti-lock ventilated disc brakes -- all contributing to a fun, sporty ride, according to critics.
- "The X6 is quiet and rock-steady at high speed, with nicely tuned speed-variable power steering and big, capable brakes. The SUV delivers the fun and feel of a sport coupe through twisting mountain roads and absorbs bumps admirably in city construction zones." -- Detroit Free Press
- "Despite a curb weight past 5200 pounds, the X6 xDrive 50i often handles like a much smaller vehicle. Ride is a combination of traditional BMW firmness with a bit of the roll you get with tall vehicles." -- Motor Trend
- "I can't help comparing it to a modern fighter jet that is so unstable that a computer is required to keep it flying straight. The X6 goes straight just fine, but throw it into a corner and a bunch of computers finesse the car's attitude to make sure you hit your apex. The result is a truly precise and dynamic ride that doesn't fail to impress." -- Road and Track
- "[W]hile its incredibly fast and has ridiculous levels of grip, the steering is almost totally numb, so it takes time to develop faith in the chassis' ability." -- Jalopnik