2013 BMW X6 Preview

Jeff Youngs | Jul 26, 2013
  • 4-door sports activity coupe
  • Up to 555 horsepower
  • EPA-estimated to achieve up to 23 mpg on the highway
  • 3 available trim levels
  • All-wheel drive (AWD)
  • Free scheduled maintenance for 4 years/50,000 miles


To some it's a crossover, to others it's an SUV, but to BMW, it's a sports activity coupe. Classification aside, the unique 4-door X6 returns for 2013 with revised front styling, LED taillights, and upgraded performance features.

Exterior Features

From the outside, the 2013 BMW X6 xDrive35i and xDrive50i look much like a widened hatchback version of the more mainstream X5, accented by 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in run-flat tires, adaptive and auto-leveling automatic HID headlights, fog lights, and auto-dimming power-folding outside mirrors with reverse auto tilt down. Rain-sensing wipers are also standard, as are heated windshield washer nozzles, dual tailpipes, power tilt/slide moonroof, and a power liftgate.

BMW differentiates the X6 M with revised bumpers and rocker panels, 20-inch alloy wheels fitted with performance tires, quad tailpipes, and a more aggressive hood design.

Interior Features

Inside, the 2013 BMW X6 xDrive35i is equipped with heated 10-way power front seats, memory settings for the driver, leather upholstery, split-folding rear seat, wood trim, push-button start, dual-zone climate control, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The assortment of standard amenities also includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel with integrated audio controls, Bluetooth connectivity, intelligent cruise control, iDrive infotainment system, and a 205-watt 10-speaker sound system featuring HD Radio service and a USB port.

Buyers of the xDrive50i get all of that plus 20-way power front seats, memory settings for two drivers, digital compass, universal garage door opener, and a voice-activated navigation system offering real-time traffic information.

BMW takes the X6 M up a few notches from there by adding more leather inside the cabin, aluminum trim, unique sport steering wheel, and a 600-watt 16-speaker audio system.

Optional Features

BMW offers a wide variety of options for the 2013 X6, each delivering a greater degree of comfort, performance, or safety. Highlights include the xDrive35i and xDrive50i's Technology package featuring automatic high-beam headlights, side-view exterior cameras, and a head-up display; BMW Individual Composition package with 20-way power front seats (standard on the xDrive50i), upgraded leather upholstery and trim, high-gloss accents, and unique door sills; and a Premium package comprised of 4-zone climate control, rear sunshades, bird's-eye view camera, and a navigation system (standard on the xDrive50i). The X6 is also available with a Cold Weather package that adds items such as heated rear seats, and an M Performance package with 20-inch alloy wheels, performance tires, sport steering wheel, stainless steel foot pedals, and black chrome exhaust tips.

Most of these upgrades are shared with the X6 M. An optional 825-watt audio system is reserved exclusively for this top-of-the-line variant.

Under the Hood

In xDrive35i form, the 2013 BMW X6 features a turbocharged and direct-injection 3.0-liter 6-cylinder engine that generates 300 horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque, while the X6 xDrive50i is equipped with a direct-injecton, 4.4-liter V-8 engine boasting twin turbochargers that help produce 400 horsepower and 450 lb.-ft. of torque. Both models offer standard AWD capability, hill-descent control, torque-vectoring control, hill-start assist, and an 8-speed automatic transmission with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters as well as sport and manual modes.

For the 2013 X6 M, BMW utilizes the xDrive50i's 4.4-liter V-8, though, in this case, output is increased to 555 horsepower and 500 lb.-ft. of torque. This sportiest of X6 variants includes a 6-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, in addition to sport and manual modes. According to BMW, the 2013 X6 M can sprint from 0-60 mph in only 4.5 seconds.

Complementing the M's more powerful engine are upgraded braking and steering systems, performance-tuned AWD, electronic dampers and rear air suspension, and a dynamic mode with more liberal traction control settings.

Fuel Economy

EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2013 BMW X6 are:
  • X6 xDrive35i: 16/23/19 mpg (city/highway/combined)
  • X6 xDrive50i: 14/20/16 mpg
  • X6 M: 12/17/14 mpg


The 2013 BMW X6's standard safety components include 6 air bags, adaptive LED brake lights, front and rear park-assist sensors, traction control, 4 years of BMW Assist with emergency response services, and 4-wheel anti-lock ventilated disc brakes featuring brake drying, brake stand-by, and brake-fade compensation systems.

As this preview is written, neither the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) nor the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has rated the crashworthiness of the 2013 BMW X6.


The BMW X6's iDrive system employs a dial on the center console linked to a large display screen above the instrument panel, and is designed to provide intuitive control of the audio, telephone, and navigation features, among others.
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