Despite the current-gen BMW X5 still being quite fresh, having only debuted in 2014, BMW is currently working on a new one and is close to production on it. A lot of this has to do with BMW completely revamping the chassis in its model lineup. All of them are switching to BMW’s modular CLAR architecture, which debuted on the 7 Series. So the new BMW X5 may debut a bit ahead of schedule, evidenced by a BMW X5 M test mule being caught driving around in camouflage. (We don’t own the spy photos but they can be seen here)

The car we’re seeing in these spy photos is very clearly an X5, except with massive front air intakes and quad exhausts. These signify the mighty X5 M with tons of performance. The suspensions also seems a bit low for an X5. We don’t know for sure which engine will power the next X5 M but expect the same 4.4 liter twin-turbo V8 engine from the upcoming BMW M5. That will almost certainly be paired with a ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic and will most likely power an all-wheel drive system similar to the new M5’s. We don’t know if it will be able to be switched to rear-wheel drive but it could have the ‘4WD Sport’ mode the M5 will have.

BMW X5 prototype 

Looking at these spy photos closely reveals some other interesting design features. Take a look at the Hofmeister Kink, which seems to be almost non-existent. It’s significantly more rounded and has less of a ‘kink’. Though, maybe once the camo comes off, we’ll see more of BMW’s famous design cue. Also, if you take a look at the headlights closely, you can see that they don’t connect with the grille, like the current model does. It seems to follow the similar design language of the new X3.

Check the spy photos out for yourself and let us know what you think.

[Source: Motor Authority]