- Daring shape
- Imposing look
- Impressive performance
- Available V-8 power
- Light-up grille? You sure?
- Very expensive
- Not practical
- The X5 and X7 are very good
The 2020 BMW X6 is the crossover coupe that "nose" how to turn heads.
The BMW X6 crossover coupe’s always been ahead of the styling curve, now it leads by a nose.
The redesigned 2020 BMW X6 sports the automaker’s big grille from its other models—including an optional light-up snout this time—that fronts the curvaceous four-door crossover with a bevy of tech inside. The X6 is just as brash as its always been, defying convention and most practical sense when it comes to the way most people use their crossovers. The X6 is available in November 2019 in rear-drive sDrive40i, all-wheel-drive xDrive40i, and V-8-powered M50i configurations, and costs at least $65,295. Top trims can brush past $90,000 with multiple options—a high-powered X6M version due later may thumb its profound nose at six figures.
Style and performance
The X6’s all about outward appearances. The 2020 version is longer, lower and wider than before, with a sharper nose and can’t-miss gate this time around. BMW’s recent trend toward bigger grilles is evident; the X6 may be the lost Cash Money Millionaire rapper we never knew.
The body sides don’t deviate far from the X6’s formula: the descending roofline meets a small kickup in the windows toward the rear deck. Along the bottom of the doors, a sharper crease lowers the car’s visual weight and frames the wide and tall 20-inch wheels that are standard on all versions.
Around back, the X6’s curviness changes to horizontal shelves with the decklid spoiler, rear taillights, and bottom liftgate, which all make distinct horizontal lines. The quad-tipped exhausts feature prominently at the rear end—the X6 has never been about efficiency anyway.
Inside, the X6 is similar to the related X5 and X7 crossovers with strong horizontal themes and a wide 12.3-inch touchscreen for infotainment. A 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster is standard too, although it’s not the “wall of screens” found in rivals from Mercedes-Benz.
Under the hood of the X6 will be a 3.0-liter turbo-6 or a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8, depending on the model, shifted through a standard 8-speed automatic.
The X6 sDrive40i and xDrive40i are powered by a 335-horsepower inline-6 to drive the rear or all four wheels, respectively. BMW says both models will accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in about 5 seconds; the xDrive40i takes just 0.1-second longer because it’s heavier by about 200 pounds.
The M50i is powered by a 523-hp 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8 that’s new for BMW and propels the X6 M50i from 0 to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds, half a second faster than the outgoing version. The M50i is all-wheel-drive only and tips the scales at more than 2.5 tons.
All X6 models use adaptive dampers to vary the stiffness of the suspension, although some models can be equipped with an air suspension that will raise or lower the car by 3 inches for more ground clearance or better road-holding.
This year, the X6 can be equipped with rear-axle steering that can virtually shorten the wheelbase of the car or carve a tighter line through corners, or an off-road package that adds underbody protection and an electronically controlled rear differential.
Comfort, safety, and features
The 2020 X6 is 1 inch longer than the model it replaces, including 1.6 inches added between the wheels. It’s fractionally wider and lower too, reportedly for better aerodynamics in the big, heavy crossover.
The front seats have more leg room than the outgoing model but less head room. Rear-seat passengers get 35.7 inches of leg room—up incrementally over the outgoing version—but even less head room than before, too.
Cargo room is up slightly this year; 27.6 cubic feet with the seats up, 59.6 cubes with the second row folded. The X6 isn’t as practical as the X5 from which it’s based, although buyers don’t seem to much notice anymore.
Every X6 is equipped with automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitors, parking sensors, and lane-departure warnings. Spend-up safety extras include active driving assistants with adaptive cruise control, active lane control, and lane change assist. A surround-view camera system is optional and a parking helper that remembers how drivers maneuver into a parking space is available, too.
All X6s are equipped with 20-inch wheels, leather upholstery, a 12.3-inch touchscreen for infotainment with Apple CarPlay compatibility, heated front seats, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, parking sensors, LED headlights, Bluetooth connectivity, automatic emergency braking, and blind-spot monitors.
Softer leather upholstery, deeper sport buckets, driving assistants, a head-up display, 21- or 22-inch wheels, light-up grille, glass controls, cooled front seats, heated rear seats, premium audio, and a night-vision camera are all on the options list.
The X6 will go on sale in November 2019.