When BMW launched the X6 in 2008, it was met with doubts from automotive critics. Its coupe-like roofline does not allow the large cargo space expected from a three-row SUV. Also not really driving like a sleek and low sport sedan. There are some who predict premature death. But a decade later, the 2018 BMW X6 still exist.
No doubt, there is a small group of buyers who want a luxury sedan but with a higher ground clearance and sitting position. The 2018 X6 sporty look is also a major appeal, and it’s powered by two powerful turbocharged engine options.
If you won’t transport five passengers or a lot of cargo, the 2018 BMW X6 can be a fun choice for an SUV. But you will pay the price for its exclusive looks and ability. It’s more expensive than the same equipped but more conventional brother, the 2018 X5. And with the X5, you get more interior space, better visibility and higher towing capability.
Trim and Features
The 2018 BMW X6 is a five-passenger midsize fastback crossover SUV that available in three main configurations: the sDrive35i, xDrive35i and xDrive50i.
The sDrive35i and xDrive35i come with essentially the same standard equipment. It includes 19-inch alloy wheels, automatic wipers, LED foglights, adaptive xenon headlights, front and rear parking sensors, a sunroof, a power liftgate, auto-dimming outside mirrors, a rearview camera, dual-zone automatic climate control, driver-seat memory settings, heated and power-adjustable front seats, a 40/20/40-split folding rear seat and leather upholstery.
Standard electronics features include BMW iDrive interface with a 10.2-inch touchscreen and a touchpad controller, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, navigation, the BMW ConnectedDrive services (including BMW Assist emergency communications) and integrated smartphone apps, a nine-speaker sound system with a CD player, HD radio, auxiliary audio and USB inputs and 20GB of personal music storage.
The 2018 BMW X6 xDrive50i adds blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warning, forward collision warning with low-speed automatic braking, keyless ignition and entry, hands-free hatch opening, four-zone automatic climate control, 20-way multicontour front seats with shoulder and thigh bolster adjustments, a surround-view camera system, a 16-speaker Harman Kardon surround-sound audio system and satellite radio.
Except for the V8 engine, all of these features are available as an option for the 35i models.
Every 2018 BMW X6 can be equipped with an Executive package, which adds adaptive LED headlights with automatic high beams, soft-close doors and a head-up display. The Dynamic Handling package adds adaptive suspension dampers with a rear air suspension and active roll stabilization. There’s also an M Sport package that gives the X6 sportier-looking bodywork and special interior trim.
Stand-alone options includes Apple CarPlay integration, a night-vision system, a rear-seat entertainment system and a premium Bang & Olufsen sound system.
The 2018 BMW X6 is available with two different engines. The sDrive35i and xDrive35i both get a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder that produces 300 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque. Rear-wheel drive is standard for the sDrive35i, and all-wheel drive with hill descent control is standard for the xDrive35i. An eight-speed automatic transmission with steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles is standard for both models.
In performance testing, the 2018 BMW X6 xDrive35i accelerates from zero to 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds, which is a quick time for the segment. EPA estimated fuel economy at 21 mpg combined (18 city/25 highway) for the sDrive35i and 20 mpg combined (18 city/24 highway) for the xDrive35i.
The 2018 BMW X6 xDrive50i gets a turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine that delivers 445 hp and 480 lb-ft of torque. This model comes standard all-wheel drive and also uses an eight-speed automatic transmission. BMW says the V8-powered X6 will reach 60 mph in 4.6 seconds. EPA fuel economy estimates are 17 mpg combined (15 city/21 highway).
Inside the 2018 BMW X6, you will find a very supportive and comfortable front seats, especially the 20-way multicontour seats in the xDrive50i model. The back seat is clearly narrow due to the lack of headroom caused by the sloping roofline. The center of the backseat is also not very useful, this is more than the uncomfortable hump between the two deeply contoured outboard seating positions. The rear seat also not reclining. Finally, getting in and out of the rear seat is more difficult because the door is not wide open and the low roofline requires passengers to duck their heads as they go in and out.
As for the atmosphere of the cabin itself, the 2018 BMW X6 offers stylish design with high-quality materials and trim. The iDrive 10.2-inch touchscreen system is a useful improvement, with the control knob and touchpad easier to use than previous versions. But it can still take a little longer to do daily tasks compared to infotainment systems found in competing models.
When it came time to transport the goods, the 208 BMW X6 only offered a 26.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats. Fold down the three sections of a 40/20/40-split rear seat and you have 59.7 cubic feet of storage space. To put this number into perspective, the Porsche Cayenne, which is not exactly a practical crossover, offering a total of 62.9 cubic feet.
Release Date and Price
Official price for the standard sDrive 35i starts at $63,695 (includes the $995 destination charge), while moving up to the xDrive adds an extra $2,300. The exclusively all-wheel drive xDrive 50i model starts at $78,445.