BMW M’s first-ever bespoke, from-the-ground-up production car (excluding the homologation-special M1 that was made before the M Division made production vehicles) is about to debut — the BMW XM. The concept car was recently released and showed off the most radical, controversial design in BMW’s history. While we’re confident that the production car will look similar to the concept car, we’re not quite sure just how similar. In these new spy photos, we can see a BMW XM test mule that’s shed some camo, which allows us to see how close the production car will be to the concept. (We don’t own the photos but you can see them here)
One of the first things you can notice that’s different from the concept are the headlights. On the XM Concept, the bottom portion of the split headlight design was sort of hidden behind a black plastic panel. However, on the test mule in these spy photos, you can actually see the bottom lights, which don’t seem as they do on the concept. Obviously, the top half of the headlights aren’t the cartoon vampire teeth of the concept.
The kidney grilles look smaller than those on the concept, too. The concept car’s grilles were enormous, taking up almost the entirety of the front end. This test mule’s grilles are large but not as comically large as the concept’s. Interestingly, the funny little trim strip that runs the shoulder line of the concept seems to be present on the BMW XM test mule. It’s an unusual detail that seemed a bit odd on the concept but it seems to have made production.
Out back, the quad stacked exhaust pipes remain from the concept. Again, this is an unusual design, one that’s never been featured on any other BMW, but it’s one of the designs that remains from the concept. The taillights also look similar to the concept but it’s difficult to tell with the camouflage.
The BMW XM should look a lot like the concept car when it finally debuts, as evidenced by these spy photos, but there will be some differences. Hopefully, those differences improve on the concept’s looks a bit and make it a bit less extravagant looking.