When I got the email letting me know my last-minute assignment for the week would be to go pick up, drive, shoot and review the 2015 BMW X6 xDrive50i, I had to slap myself in the face for a second. Why, you ask? Well, even if you didn’t ask, I’ll tell you. I’ve never driven an X6. I’ve driven all sorts of BMWs, almost all of them, I think – except for the X6. Yet when I was given the X6 news I was pretty unexcited about the idea. That’s when I had to slap myself in the face as I realized my disappointment heralded my descent into the slippery slope of ungrateful, spoiled, prima dona auto journalist. So post-face slap, I pulled up my britches, reminded myself that even though the idea of a tank-sized SUV isn’t my cup of tea, it’s a BMW after all, and BMW makes fantastic driving machines and the X6 with its 260,000 buyers should be no different to all the other BMWs I’ve known and loved, right? If that wasn’t motivation enough to get excited at the prospect of reviewing the X6, I reminded myself I’d soon be picking up, driving, shooting and reviewing a McLaren 650S…. That did the trick and off I went to BMW with the usual spring in my step to pick up my very own 445-hp Bavarian tank.
What was your first reaction to the X6?
You’d be hard pressed to find anyone who doesn’t find the majority of BMWs, from the very first generations all the way up to the present day [Right up until the 5 Series GT… –Ed.], to be aesthetically pleasing vehicles. Even if you’re not overcome with lust on sight, you’d still have to admit they’re sharp-looking automobiles. In the case of the X6, if I were to poll a room full of car enthusiasts and people who use cars just like they would any other device and ask them what they thought of the X6’s styling, I’d probably hear a wide range of answers. In fact, I did ask a few people in my circle of friends – both enthusiasts and ‘devicers’. Some of the answers I received (in no particular order) were:
“I love it!”
“What and why is it?”
“It’s. So. Big.”
“Is it good on gas?”
“I don’t know what that thing is, but I want one!”
“That’s a BMW?”
“Do you think we can fit 20 people in that thing?”
“Can I drive it?”
“How fast is it?”
“That’s a biiiiiiiiiiig bitc…”
As you can see from the highly scientific poll, the size of the X6 was what struck most people.
When I arrived to collect my steed for the week, I was immediately struck by its presence. It was a clear spring day with nary a cloud in the sky and sitting in BMW’s ample lot, wearing its Space Grey coat of paint, it was sparkling in the sun. Its M Sport Package split 5-spoke 20-inch wheels, wrapped in 275/40-20 up front and 315/35-20 Dunlop summer tires showing off the X6’s large brake rotors and giving me the impression that this tank may just be able to handle the way I would want to drive it.