If you look at the BMW XM objectively, it’s a good idea. Fans might be annoyed that the first from-the-ground-up M car since the original M1 is a plug-in hybrid SUV but that’s not actually what it is. Instead, the BMW XM is a three-ton, plug-in hybrid printing press. It essentially allows BMW M to print money, because it’s incredibly expensive and will mostly be sold in markets that are going to buy the most optioned up versions: the U.S. and China.
U.S. – The largest market
According to a recent powerpoint presentation by BMW M, the Bavarians expect the XM to be sold primarily in those two markets. Of course, these are just projections and not concrete sales figures but BMW knows its markets, it does its research, it has a pretty good grasp on who’s going to buy what. So these projections are likely pretty accurate.
The U.S. will be the BMW XM’s biggest market with projected market share of 26 percent. Surprise, I know. The country that loves big, obnoxious, luxury SUVs is naturally going to be the market for the XM. I can already see them rolling around Beverly Hills at four mph, using none of its monstrous power, just like every other Lamborghini Urus, Aston Martin DBX, and Bentley Bentayga. And in places like that, they’re not getting base model XMs. They’re getting fully loaded ones with Individual colors, so price tags are going to be high and BMW is going to make lots of money.
After the U.S., China will be the next largest market, with a projected market share of 24 percent. China is right behind the U.S. in its love for obnoxious luxury cars. China is a bit more into luxury limos than the U.S., which is likely the reason for its slightly lower projection, but it’s still a big SUV-buying country. China also likes big, bold styling, so the XM will fit in well.
The rest of the projected market share is cleaned up by the Middle East (8 percent), Germany (7 percent), and Korea (7 percent). That sounds about right, unless Germany as a country suddenly falls in love with enormous SUVs, something we don’t see happening any time soon.
BMW isn’t dumb and, we must remember, isn’t in the business of making cars. It’s in the business of making money, cars is just how it does that. So the XM was made because BMW knows it will make money. Hopefully, much of that money can be funneled into making some smaller, more exciting standalone M cars that are more faithful to the brand name.