It may look like a regular BMW XM at first glance but the Toronto Red stripe across the SUV’s massive side profile indicates we’re dealing with the Label Red. The matching red contour for the rear badge is also a telltale sign it’s the high-performance version. This prototype painted in M Brooklyn Grey can be seen riding on the 21-inch wheels (918 M style), but you can step up to a 22-inch set or even massive 23-inch alloys.

BMW’s most powerful production car ever won’t enter series production at the Spartanburg plant in South Carolina until August, so this is definitely a pre-production prototype used for testing purposes. The XM Label Red packs a combined output of 738 hp and a colossal 738 lb-ft (1,000 Nm) from a twin-turbo V8 4.4-liter engine working together with an electric motor built into the eight-speed automatic transmission.

Priced from $185,995 in the United States before options (yes, there are still a few extras you can add), the spicy XM is a preview of what’s to come in terms of the new M5. The G90 Sedan and recently announced G99 Touring will use an adaptation of the PHEV V8 setup, dialed to somewhere between the regular XM and the Label Red. We’re hearing it’s going to have 718 hp in a presumably lighter vehicle than the SUV’s shocking curb weight of 2,720 kg (nearly 6,000 pounds).

Regardless of how much power the engineers throw at the XM, it’s impossible to make such a large and heavy vehicle as nimble and as fun to drive as an M2. Looking strictly at the performance numbers, the 2024 X5 M Competition should still be faster, but BMW believes people will buy the XM for other reasons. The striking design would be one of them, along with the exclusive touches on the inside. That said, the SUV didn’t get the special cabin we saw on the namesake concept.

By now, you’re probably wondering who is going to buy the XM. According to internal studies conducted by BMW, the United States will be the biggest single market for the M flagship, with 26% of all sales. China is projected to be right behind, at 23%. The Middle East is estimated to account for 8% of the demand, with Germany and South Korea up next at 7% each.

Source: Automotive Mike / YouTube