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#17

in Luxury Midsize SUVs

MSRP: $60,800 - $93,900
Invoice: $55,935 - $86,390
MPG: 17 City / 24 Hwy
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BMW X6 Performance

Critics agree that the 2014 BMW X6 offers composed handling and a lineup of turbocharged engine choices that are powerful and refined.

  • "To say the 2014 BMW X6 has benefitted from years of BMW performance sedans and coupes would be an understatement. Big as it is, the X6 can take its rightful place next to the best 3, 5 or 6 Series car when the tarmac diverges from straight line to serpentine." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The weird but intimidating X6 continues to be a surprisingly delightful vehicle to drive, especially in extra-power M guise.” -- Car and Driver (2013)
  • "However, don't be fooled into thinking this is a sport coupe that simply has the height of an SUV. It's big and heavy, and it's hard to escape that feeling when a winding road narrows." -- Edmunds (2013)
  • "All of this makes for a fleet 4x4 that can't quite compete against BMW's other M cars for outright agility but otherwise makes a surprisingly entertaining case for itself.” -- Popular Mechanics (2013)

Acceleration and Power

The base BMW X6 xDrive35i comes standard with a 300-horsepower, turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine, while the xDrive50i comes with a 400-horsepower, twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine. The X6 M comes with a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 that’s tuned to produce 555 horsepower and 500 pound-feet of torque. Both the xDrive35i and xDrive50i come with an eight-speed automatic transmission, while the X6 M comes with a six-speed automatic. According to the EPA, the base 2014 X6 xDrive35i gets 17/24 mpg city/highway, which is typical for a six-cylinder luxury midsize SUV with all-wheel drive.

Reviewers say the base X6 xDrive35i has a refined powertrain that delivers strong acceleration. They note that the X6 xDrive50i is even more powerful, though many think that most drivers will be satisfied with the base X6’s ample power. Test drivers write that the standard eight-speed automatic transmission shifts quickly and smoothly.

  • "… its impressive engine lineup motivates the X6 forward in varying degrees of hyper acceleration." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Acceleration is brisk with either of the available engines." -- Edmunds (2013)
  • "It's a smooth engine and the eight-speed automatic cracks off both up- and downshifts smoothly. For a car like this, I don't think the V8 is necessary, but then again, this entire X6 isn't necessary." -- AutoWeek (2013 xDrive35i)
  • "The X6 M is a fire-breathing misfit that, despite its curb heft of 5324 pounds, can launch to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds." -- Popular Mechanics (2013)

Handling and Braking

Test drivers say the 2014 BMW X6 has strong brakes and controlled handling, though they write that steering effort is a bit heavier than they would like. All-wheel drive is standard on every X6 trim, and reviewers say it contributes to the X6’s handling prowess.

  • "The X6's all-independent suspension and xDrive AWD (all-wheel drive) keep its oh-so-obvious bulk in check. …" -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The X6 M's commendable handling would be even more impressive if its center of gravity were lower.” -- Popular Mechanics (2013)
  • "I will say that I've always thought the X6 handled itself fairly well for a near 4,800-pound vehicle with a higher center of gravity. Crank the wheel and you'll be greeted with a heavy feel that may get old in the long run." -- AutoWeek (2013)
  • "In Edmunds brake testing, an X6 xDrive35i came to a stop from 60 mph in a very short 111 feet." -- Edmunds (2013)
Review Last Updated: 1/17/14

Next Steps: BMW X6