To hear BMW tell it, the X6 combines the presence of an X5 with the sporty elegance of a coupe. The X6 does indeed have the presence of the X5, on which it is based. It is similarly sized, offers the same up-high seating position, and comes with four-wheel drive. As for sporty elegance, we'll leave that to you to decide. Undeniably, the X6 is heavily restyled compared to its more conventionally shaped sibling, with a lower roofline and a more sloped hatchback. Those changes make for reduced interior volume. The X6 was designed as a four-seater, although now it can be had with a fifth set of seatbelts. The squashed roofline and the high beltline make the X6 hard to see out of; the backup camera and available blind-spot assist are essentials. The X6 handles less like a tall, heavy SUV and more like a sport sedan; its sophisticated all-wheel-drive system can send power not only from front to rear but also from side to side to aid cornering. The downside is a fairly stiff ride. The base 300-hp, 3.0-liter six is turbocharged. The 4.4-liter V-8, also turbocharged, adds 100 horsepower and 150 lb-ft of torque. Then there's the X6 M, with a seven-speed automatic and an over-the-top 555 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque from its turbo V-8. The other X6 engines get a smooth eight-speed automatic. The rather puzzling and pricey ActiveHybrid model, which got virtually the same gas mileage as the six-cylinder but cost many thousands more, is now out of production.
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