Part SUV and part sports coupe, the 2019 BMW X6 defies categorization while standing out from the crowd. Although it’s based on the X5 luxury SUV and has sacrificed some practicality in the name of a sloping roof, the X6 has been a styling success, even spawning similar designs such as the pricier Mercedes-AMG GLE Coupe.
You'll Like The 2019 BMW X6 If...
Looking for a sport-utility vehicle that’s more sport than utility? Consider the 2019 BMW X6. It boasts BMW’s proven luxury and performance credentials, but it’s also blessed with 8.3 inches of ground clearance and optional all-wheel drive, making the X6 your foul-weather friend.
You May Not Like The 2019 BMW X6 If...
If you firmly believe that form should follow function, stay away from the X6. While the sloping roof of the X6 looks cool, it cuts into rear headroom and cargo volume. What’s more, sightlines to the rear aren’t great. The X6 also does not have an optional 3rd-row seat.
We’re happy to report that Apple CarPlay is now standard on the X6, as is Blind Spot Detection. Also added as standard equipment on the new 2019 X6 is BMW’s Active Driving Assistant, which includes Lane Departure Warning, Frontal Collision Warning and Pedestrian Warning with City Mitigation and braking.
Yes, the X6’s exterior lines are a departure from other BMWs, but the interior will feel very familiar to BMW buyers. As in the X5, the X6 has front seats that are roomy and elevated, providing the driver and front passenger with a great forward view. A wide armrest/stowage bin separates the driver and passenger seat, and centered prominently in the dash is a 10.2-inch screen that controls navigation, audio and other functions via touch or a rotary dial and surrounding keys. Although the X5 can seat up to seven with an optional third row, the X6 is capped at five passengers in two rows. And those folks in back will feel a bit cramped by the reduced headroom. With its hatch and folding rear seat, the 2019 BMW X6 does offer some cargo-carrying practicality, but not as much as the conventionally shaped X5.
With the 2019 BMW X6, you either like its looks or you don’t. When it was introduced in 2009, the X6 was a bona fide head-scratcher, a coupe-like 4-door with a rear liftgate, in a package raised high off the ground like an SUV. For its 2nd-generation revamp four years ago, the basic contours remained but the skin got nipped and tucked, resulting in even more style. The X6’s most distinctive feature is its sloped roof. Whereas the X5 has the blocky profile of a traditional SUV, the X6 has a tapered top that evokes a stylish coupe. Some could argue the X6 lets you have your cake and eat it, too, by marrying a vehicle with the design of a grand touring coupe and the utility of an SUV.
The 2019 BMW X6, as big and heavy as it is (4,585 pounds), is a dynamic performer. First, it’s fast. The 6-cylinder models hit 60 mph in six seconds flat. But the V8-powered xDrive50i is considerably quicker, able to reach 60 in only 4.6 seconds, which makes it competitive with high-powered sports cars. Second, the X6 takes corners with surprising aplomb. Also worth noting: The 2019 BMW X6, unlike the Mercedes-AMG GLE Coupe, is available in rear-wheel-drive (RWD) form, which is preferred by some sports-car purists. On everyday roads in the daily routine, the X6 impresses us with its comfort, its opulence and its overall refinement. Still, there are a couple of problem areas. The massive blind spots to the rear aren’t something that can be fixed. But the engine’s coarse start/stop system, which is designed to save fuel by shutting down the engine at stoplights and the like, can be disabled with the simple press of a button.
Factoring in the destination fee of $995, the 2019 BMW X6 has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $63,545. The all-wheel-drive X6 xDrive35i starts at $66,845, while the V8-powered X6 xDrive50i lists for $79,295. When options are ordered, these figures can swell by thousands. A 2019 BMW X6, fully kitted, can top the $100,000 mark. At its starting price, the X6 begins several thousand dollars higher than its X5 sibling but still below the Mercedes-AMG GLE Coupe, which starts at over $71,000. The Porsche Cayenne, meanwhile, is priced similarly to the X6, and it too nails the performance/utility equation. Before buying, check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their X6. The BMW X6’s resale value has held up well historically.
The 2019 BMW X6 comes in two major forms: the sDrive35i/xDrive35i and the xDrive50i. The first two are 6-cylinder models with either rear- or all-wheel drive, while the 50 comes with a V8 and AWD. The 35s comes with Dakota leather upholstery, power tailgate, 14-way-power front seats, rearview camera with front and rear parking sensors, 3-stage heated front seats, universal garage-door opener, dual-zone climate control, and a power-adjustable steering column. For 2019, Active Driving Assistant has been made standard on all X6s. It includes Lane Departure Warning, Frontal Collision Warning, and Pedestrian Warning with City Mitigation and braking. Apple CarPlay also has been made standard on the 2019 BMW X6.
BMW’s Driver Assistance Package no longer includes Active Driving Assistant, Blind Spot Detection and Speed Limit Info, because all have been made standard equipment on the new X6. A $1,150 Convenience Package brings 4-zone climate control to the 6-cylinder models, while the $1,700 Premium Package includes Parking Assistant, Surround View Cameras, a Head Up Display, Wireless Charging and a Wi-Fi Hotspot. The Executive Package includes soft-close doors, rear sunshades, adaptive LED headlights and auto high-beam headlights, all for $2,050. Also optional: dynamic damper control and rear air suspension, for improved handling.
The X6 is a trendsetter, a muscular crossover SUV that is wholly part of the BMW brand portfolio. Not only has it spawned the smaller X4 and X2, but also rivals from other brands.
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Under the Hood
Two engines are available in the 2019 X6. The sDrive35i and xDrive35i use a turbocharged inline 6-cylinder, with “sDrive” designating rear-wheel drive (RWD) and “xDrive” meaning all-wheel drive (AWD). If you want the turbocharged V8, step up to the xDrive50i. All models use an excellent 8-speed automatic transmission, and all feature an auto stop/start function that shuts off the engine at traffic lights to save fuel. Repeated start-ups, not the smoothest, can get annoying, so we’re pleased the start/stop system can be disabled via a button. Also, as with other BMWs and many other luxury cars, premium fuel is required.
3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 (sDrive35i, xDrive35i)
300 horsepower @ 5,800-6,400 rpm
300 lb-ft of torque @ 1,200-5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/24 mpg (RWD), 18/24 mpg (AWD)
4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V8 (xDrive50i)
445 horsepower @ 5,500-6,000 rpm
480 lb-ft of torque @ 2,000-4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/22 mpg
The 2019 BMW X6 is the more vivacious but less practical version of the X5. The X5, a midsize-luxury SUV, excels at hauling people and gear. The X6, with its coupe-like styling and sloped roof, has a sportier nature. While blending a high-riding premium-crossover SUV with a sports coupe may seem a bit odd at first, the X6 has met with some success as it competes with the likes of the Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe. The X6 packs a turbocharged 6-cylinder or V8 engine, and is also available as the much more powerful X6 M (reviewed separately). The 2019 BMW X6 sDrive35i, powered by the 6-cylinder engine, starts at $63,545 (including a $995 destination charge). If you want a V8-powered X6, the xDrive50i, priced at $79,295 (with destination), is available.