A history lesson…
Released literally two minutes before the start of the recession in 2008, BMW’s X6 has done well to stay on the Bavarian’s model line-up. After all, the weird and yet somehow intriguing design has split critics, consumers and petrolheads the world over. Some love it, some hate it. One thing you can’t say about BMW is that they’re conservative. The company is always pushing boundary limits to see what we will buy, and while the X6 was a genre-busting experiment, it has probably worked.
It suits modern Britain perfectly, thanks to its 4x4 stance and Chelsea-tractor looks. The sporty, coupe-esque body has been damned by motoring journalists, but the fact is; people are buying them!
It’s sometimes hard for the general public to see what the point in the X6 is. Is it a sporty X5; is it a coupe with a big body? It’s hard to tell. Whatever it is, you’ll either love it or loathe it.
Bang for your buck
There’s no two ways about it: the BMW X6 is an expensive car. It’s especially expensive when you consider what type of climate we’re living in; where everyone is watching their pennies and trying to cut-down. But if you’ve got the financials to afford one, it can be a great buy.
First of all, you get those looks. Controversial as they may be, they are eye-catching, and rolling down any high street will get you plenty of looks and hatred. If looking good and posing is your bag, then the X6 can be your best friend and worst enemy all-in-one.
Along with the drug-dealer-style looks, the X6 also comes as standard with the usual BMW goodness. You get plenty of leather, switches to play with but not understand and the usual wood and well-made, German-feel.
What you’ll pay
New, an X6 would cost you anywhere from £40,000 to £70,000, but thanks to the recession and the fact that a lot of people can’t afford them, prices have dropped quite significantly. So much so, in fact, you can pick up a 57 plate xDrive35i model for around £30k.
The top-of-the-range X6 M is a rare car and will probably hold its value far better than it diesel of V8 petrol counterparts.
What to check
Most BMW X6s will still be under warranty, but if yours isn’t, best to check the usual bits of and pieces. The car has huge tyres, and as a result, new ones are unbelievably expensive. Make sure there is plenty of thread left, or you could be left with a bill of upwards of £600 for a full set.
A replacement clutch is around £150 for an X6, while front brake pads retail at around £50 and an alternator is roughly £250.
How it drives
This is where the X6 comes into play, as it drives very, very well. It’s a bloody big car, but you’d never know it once inside. Take it round a bend at speed and you’ll be stunned by the grip and lack of body roll. The X6 M is the ultimate speed king for 4x4s, as it features a nuclear bomb for an engine and boasts more power than Zeus.
Other than that, it’s mostly disappointing. The interior space is poor for such a big 4x4, due to the sloping rear-end, and the boot is anything but spacious. You really do expect more from what is marketed as a sports utility vehicle.
If all you care about is looking good then the X6 is an excellent car – as long as you actually like the sloping looks – but if you want a car that can take on a Range Rover Sport, this probably isn’t it.