The 2023 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb event, also known as The Race to the Clouds, takes place this Sunday, June 25. The XM Label Red, BMW’s most powerful but also heaviest production vehicle will be there in an attempt to demonstrate it’s worthy of the M badge despite weighing just under 6,000 pounds (a little over 2,700 kilograms).
In the build-up to the big event, BMW USA has taken to social media to share a video and images of the contender. It appears to be painted in Brooklyn Grey with a giant XM white decal and rides on 22-inch wheels (Style 922M) with a two-tone design. The first dedicated M model since the golden days of the iconic mid-engined M1 supercar is certainly not going to be the most athletic vehicle to tackle the 156 turns of the challenging 12.42-mile-long course.
As to who will be behind the wheel of the plug-in hybrid colossus, it’s none other than BMW Performance Chief Driving Instructor Matt Mullins. His job will be to control all those 738 electrified horses delivered by the twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 working in conjunction with an electric motor. Together, the two deliver an astounding total torque of 738 lb-ft (1,000 Nm) in a huge vehicle that stretches at 5110-mm (201.2-inch) long and is 2005-mm (78.9-inch) wide.
Could Matt Mullins try and take down the record for the fastest production SUV at Pikes Peak? If that’s the case, he will have to complete the course quicker than the 10 minutes and 32 seconds the Lamborghini Urus needed last year to finish the hill climb event. Drivers start the race at 9,400 feet (2,865 meters) above sea level and must reach the summit located at 14,120 feet (4,303 meters), therefore having to climb a whopping 4,720 feet (1,440 meters).
We’ll remind you the XM Label Red costs an eye-watering $185,995 in the United States, and that’s before options, or an extra $26,000 over the regular model. In some parts of the world, BMW has also introduced a lesser 50e model with a plug-in hybrid inline-six, but that specification is not coming to the US.
Source: BMW USA / Instagram