$48,716 - $81,462

2017 BMW X6 Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2017 BMW X6 was new.


Performance: 8.9

The 2017 BMW X6 features excellent performance for the class, with a solid combination of engines and driving dynamics. A standard V6 engine provides ample power, and an optional V8 is extremely formidable. The ride quality is comfortable even over rough roads. The X6 handles with agility, direct steering, and an even more powerful V8.

  • "Despite its hulky, oddly proportioned exterior, the 2017 BMW X6 SUV is an impressive performer." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Even the entry-level inline six-cylinder engine provides brisk acceleration. Meanwhile, the V8 engine in the xDrive50i gathers speed with such smoothness and civility that you might actually prefer it to the hot-rod version in the high-performance X6 M model. Beyond that, the X6 delivers a nicely composed and surprisingly serene ride." -- Edmunds (2016)
  • "When paired with a ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic transmission, the X6 doesn't lack for anything, performance-wise. It has great acceleration, precise steering, good balance, excellent cornering and a pretty decent turning radius." -- Yahoo Autos (2015)

Acceleration and Power

The 2017 X6 comes standard with a turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine that produces 300 horsepower. An eight-speed automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive are also standard. All-wheel drive is optional, as is a twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine that produces 445 horsepower. The X6 M comes with all-wheel drive and a 567-horsepower twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine.

According to EPA estimates, the base X6 gets 18 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway, which are about average estimates for the class. The optional V8 engine returns 15 mpg in the city and 21 on the highway. The X6 M gets 14/19 mpg city/highway.

The standard engine delivers strong and refined acceleration, while the eight-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly and pairs well with the engine. The available V8 engine is even more thrilling, moving briskly from a standstill and providing excellent power at speed. Some reviewers even compare this engine's performance favorably to the high-performance X6 M model.

  • "The all-wheel-drive grip and 445-horsepower twin-turbocharged V8 in the xDrive50i is particularly alluring, especially in light of its 4.6-second zero-to-60-mph run." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "By far the most memorable aspect of driving the 2016 BMW X6 is the rush of acceleration when you mat the gas pedal. Most drivers will be delighted with the vigor and refinement of the six-cylinder engine in the 35i models. The eight-speed automatic transmission serves up smooth shifts, too. Still, there's a lot to be said for the V8 engine in the X6 xDrive50i if you don't mind the steep premium. The 445-hp V8 not only sounds glorious, it moves the 2.5-ton SUV away from a stoplight with such thrust that it feels like a much smaller vehicle. In everyday driving situations you only need to toe into the accelerator pedal a small amount to maintain a brisk pace. It's an impressive combination of power and civility that the chronically amped-up X6 M would be hard-pressed to match." -- Edmunds (2016)
  • "We're also big fans of the xDrive50i's otherworldly twin-turbo V8, which yanks the X6 to 60 miles per hour in a mere 4.6 seconds; it feels right to have a profoundly powerful engine in such a heavy vehicle. Still, the standard inline-6 is no slouch, and it gets significantly better fuel economy." -- Autotrader (2015)

Handling and Braking

The X6 delivers impressive handling, especially considering its large size. Steering is precise, and the car moves athletically through turns while staying planted to the ground. It is also easy to maneuver in close spaces. Ride quality is good, and the X6 travels comfortably over uneven surfaces.

  • "In town, the X6 behaves very much like a BMW sedan, which is to say comfortable and responsive." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The X6 is inescapably large, although BMW's engineers have worked their usual magic with the steering and suspension. For a vehicle weighing between 4,600 and 5,200 pounds, it feels astonishingly nimble, with precise handling and excellent body control. Even though the ride is reasonably supple with the standard suspension, the optional adaptive dampers bring an excellent blend of comfort and sporty composure." -- Autotrader (2016)
  • "Ride comfort is also a strength for the BMW X6. It delivers a smooth, serene ride over bumpy surfaces, especially if you select the Comfort mode on an X6 equipped with the adjustable shock absorbers. Switching to Sport mode provides a firmer ride that helps the X6 feel more controlled around tight turns. Nevertheless, this is a large, heavy vehicle that sits high off the ground. Though the X6 handles well for its size, it's nowhere near as involving to drive as a proper luxury sport sedan. Likewise, the steering is precise but doesn't offer much feedback. If these details are important to you, a Porsche Cayenne might be more to your liking." -- Edmunds (2016)

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