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SAFETY | 9 out of 10
Though it's been on the market for a full model year, the BMW X6 still hasn't been crash tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
Ever known for its high-tech innovations, BMW doesn't skimp on safety features for the X6. With a full complement of front, side, and curtain airbags, plus a range of stability and performance-tuned traction control, the X6 provides both the protection you need and the confidence you want behind the wheel.
Since it's structurally similar to the BMW X5, which gets mostly five-star crash scores from NHTSA and is a Top Safety Pick over at the IIHS, the X6 may perform well too. On the other hand, the different roofline could significantly affect results, so test scores cannot be simply carried over to the 2010 X6.
Safety features aren't lacking, as the 2010 BMW X6 comes standard with front, side, and curtain airbags; anti-lock brakes; and traction and stability control. The X6 M adds to the package with a performance-minded M Dynamic mode that allows for higher slip angles while still maintaining safety.
BMW stability control takes advantage of the 2010 X6's four-wheel-drive system through Dynamic Performance Control. The ability to send power to individual wheels lets the BMW X6 have more direct impact on safety than stability control alone can. As Car and Driver puts it, "DPC weighs an additional 26 pounds, and we found it to be worth every ounce." Popular Mechanics feels that "in fast corners with abrupt steering maneuvers or when the driver suddenly lifts off the gas pedal, DPC simply improves stability." The M Dynamic mode does the same, but allows a little more driver aggression for on-track fun.
The 2010 BMW X6 hasn't been crash-tested yet, but it is chock-full of cutting-edge safety equipment.