Top Gear’s BMW X6 Off-Road Review

BMW X6 | March 17th, 2010 by 12
2015 bmw x6 images 129 750x500

TopGear brings us on their off-road expedition aboard the BMW X6, the same very controversial and little appreciated Sports Activity Coupe by Jeremy Clarkson. The …

TopGear brings us on their off-road expedition aboard the BMW X6, the same very controversial and little appreciated Sports Activity Coupe by Jeremy Clarkson.

The X6 was never meant to be a true off-road vehicle, that job remains partially for the X5, or ….for a vehicle like the Range Rover, but can the X6 still do the job?

We shall find out.

“When BMW called the X6 a ‘Sports Activity Vehicle’, it never said what sports, or specified what activities… though one suspects that BMW probably regards the designation as involving over-aerobicised lifestyle droids rollerblading followed by a stint of vigorous casual posing.

Something picturesque and over-clean that means you can’t see the bovine glaze in the model’s eyes, or the ribbons of silvery drool from the corners of their vacant mouths. Photographer Justin Leighton and I, on the other hand, regarded it as an open door for imaginative interpretation. Which is why we are now stood – woefully underprepared – in a 60,000-hectare Polish wilderness trying to lure wolves from their hidey holes with half-eaten ham sandwiches. In the middle of the night.

A sport? No. But you’ll be hard pressed not to class it as an activity.



Of course, with no real idea of how deep we can wade, we go for brute force and ignorance. Bizarrely, the X6 is so duck’s bum watertight that it floats across deep bits. Hit the shallower parts at speed and the car will also use its very flat undertray to skip across water. Possibly not what BMW engineers had in mind, but effective and undeniably spectacular. And it might have sent 30-foot jets of spray into the air, but a quick look inside the engine bay revealed not a drop under the bonnet. Seals that good usually come on the Space Shuttle.

The local beavers undermine the causeways so they collapse and leave several inches of wading water. Not a problem until you realise that the ‘fen’ off the causeway is actually three-metres deep, so there’s no chance of driving around the obstacle. Enough to swallow the X6 before you can get a towrope out. If there was anything to attach a towrope to. Which there isn’t.

Continued here

12 responses to “Top Gear’s BMW X6 Off-Road Review”

  1. J.T. says:

    That is awesome

  2. John says:

    Where’s the video??

  3. brassneck says:


  4. Shawn says:

    As we suspected, it just needed proper tires to do off-road duty. Even the tires shown in the photos look too low profile – smaller wheels and BF Goodrich T/A KMs should see this X6 half way up K2.

    So much for that silly review where they complained they couldn’t take the X6 up a steep, wet, grassy hill wearing summer performance tires.

  5. Laszlo says:

    anything with 4 wheel drive, enough power and a full renter insurance will go well in the mud/dirt.
    I used to rent Jeep Cherokee’s for this purpose. Back in the good ol’ 90’s 34.99 plus the mandatory 16.99 insurance per day could get you a Jeep Cherokee 4×4. What loads of fun we had in those… never worry about repair or long term effect.
    No wonder Alamo went bankrupt :-)
    The X6 will do just fine with proper tires and proper attitude. as long as you are not afraid to take it off road, it will be decent.

  6. Giom says:

    Jeremy Clarkson should drop his head in shame for calling himself a journalist.

    I must admit, though, that even I’m surprised by the X6s’ off road abilities. This article is sure to shut the nay sayers up for good. And if they argue about the looks, in my eyes, this is one of the most beautifull cars in existence.

  7. brassneck says:

    Agreed :D

  8. BMW X6 says:

    X6 is awesome

  9. DJ says:

    This is a video of the X6 filmed at the BMW Welt Museum in Munich Germany:

  10. Andrey says:

    bmw x6 off road good

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