It looks like BMW’s M division is doing something it said it never would: building an SUV. The BMW X6 M will use tuned versions of the X6’s 400 HP V8 and torque vectoring differentials.
It’s the latter, called Dynamic Performance Control that we’re most interested in. The system is capable of parsing torque both front to rear and side-to-side, directing it to an individual tire even. When we tested the X6 we found that it worked like stability control, but enhanced, rather than reduced performance. For the X6 M, it’s been tweaked to “reduce understeer” which we can only assume increased oversteer. That’s a good thing, we found the V8-engined BMW X6 to be considerably more nose heavy than its 6-cylinder sibling, resulting in a slightly ponderous driving experience.
The other big addition is a high-power version of the 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8. No power figures yet, but figure on a healthy increase over the stock unit’s 400 HP, 450 Lb-Ft rating. We don’t think it’s optimistic to expect both numbers to be over 500. It’s also rumored that this engine could be used in the next M5.
It’s fun to watch the ways in which different manufacturers are learning to manipulate the scary new world of the Internet. Porsche’s attempt to build buzz around the Porsche Panamera resulted in a fleet of lightly disguised cars being driven around city centers in the hopes of fan boy photos. BMW seems to want to take the content directly to viewers, using BMW Web TV to promote carefully formulated pieces of propaganda in advance of new product launches. Both are certainly more fun than paying spy photographers to take shots of “secret” prototypes. [via BMW Web TV]