The BMW X6 M occupies its own category. Although the list of sporty crossover SUVs continues to grow, there's still nothing quite like it. So the question: Is it an overgrown sedan or an undergrown SUV? Since its performance proves more impressive than its utility, I consider "overgown sedan" the more accurate description.
The X6 M isn't for those who value practicality -- it's not very practical. Nor, with a base price of $92.900, is it cheap. But there's something that it is: A fire-breathing fun machine. Powered by BMW's M V8, the X6 has an impressive 555 horsepower and 500 pound-feet of torque. Power reaches all four wheels through a 6-speed automatic transmission, and launches the car from 0 to 60 in 4.5 seconds.
Thanks to the Adaptive Drive with Electronic Damper Control, the X6 M has very little body roll, especially for a vehicle with 5324 pounds of heft. Steering feel and braking are amazingly sharp, and handling capabilties set standards for the class.
The widescreen navigation system comes standard, as does BMW's iDrive system and heated leather front seats. Rear-seat headroom is a major X6 M deficiency, however -- due to the car's quirky sloped roofline, tall passengers will not enjoy riding in the back. Trunk space is also tight. You'll find more cargo room in a Range Rover Sport or Porsche Cayenne.
Like other high-performance crossovers, the X6 M would be hopeless in serious off-road conditions. Don't make any plans to go up that muddy trail to your uncle's cabin for the weekend, because you might not make it.