The reviews for the all new BMW X6 are starting to come out. This week, it was Jalopnik's turn to test drive the X6 and share the details with us.
"The 2009 BMW X6 isn't great on a racetrack. This thought occurs during my third lap when I realize — the throttle wide open, exiting a corner at 100mph — this may not be the best sports car out there. My next thought is "But this is a 4,993lbs SUV." And that's the point where you realize what we have here is something entirely new.
BMW calls the X6 a Sports Activity Coupe. That seems preposterous given both their constant assertion that their best selling SUVs, the X3 and X5, be referred to as SAVs and the X6's four doors, which is 2 more than the unofficial definition of a coupe allows. The BMW X6 is based on that X5, its main difference, aside from the obvious low roof, swoopy bodywork and huge ass, is firm suspension and the addition of Dynamic Performance Control.
It's the latter that makes the X6 so special. Basically the cleverest rear differential in the world, DPC apportions power to the rear wheels independently to improve agility, stability and traction at all times. This matters to you and me because it makes the X6 handle incredibly well and incredibly safely in any condition without cutting power or hitting the brakes to interfere.
Combine DPC with Adaptive Drive, which eliminates roll and dive, and two incredibly powerful engines and you have a car that performs better than even the wildest imagination allows.
The first indication of the X6's genre-creating genius came with a tearing sound from the back end. Getting on the power in the middle of a wet and foggy hairpin in the Appalachian Mountains that sound suddenly joined the twin-turbo inline-six's deep growl as the level of grip began to beggar belief. It's the sound of the rear differential working hard to keep the X6 accelerating rather than spinning. Its function is otherwise undetectable, except through the scarcely unbelievable speed with which it allowed me to attack that windy mountain road in the middle of a thunderstorm.
You can read the full review here