There are not many car companies that can legitimately claim to be the masters of engine development. BMW however, doesn’t even need to claim, we are happy to give away that title.

Whether its producing 309kW from the M3′s 4.0-litre N/A V8 or providing endless torque from the “engine-of-the-year” 3.0-litre twin turbo six, the German powerhouse knows what makes a great engine. With that in mind, say hello to the latest incarnation, a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8.

To be used firstly in the new X6, xDrive50i, the BMW V8 twin turbo marks yet another stepping stone in engine development. Producing 300 kW and 600 Nm of torque from its 4.4-litres, the new engine sits at the very top of the BMW performance engine range. M cars excepted of course.

BMW X6 xDrive50i engine

It would be an educated guess to say the twin-turbo V8 is capable of slightly more power, but to keep the M cars supreme (rightly so), it has been slightly detuned.

The two turbochargers are arranged one per cylinder bank, and located within the engine vee. Using direct petrol injection, BMW says there is no such thing as turbo lag, not to mention the low inertia turbines spool up (rather quickly) to 175,000 rpm peak, which in turn uses the waste gases as additional thrust.

BMW X6 xDrive50i

0-100 km/h? 5.4 seconds. Impressive! No doubt this engine will soon find its way into the other models in the BMW range, perhaps even the 5-series.

The X6 xDrive50i comes with BMW’s intelligent xDrive which helps distribute all that power between the front and rear axle. The car also receives Dynamic Performance Control as standard. The system allows for variable distribution of drive forces between both rear wheels. We didn’t know what that meant either!

BMW X6 xDrive50i

Essentially, as we understand, when cornering on a trailing throttle, the computer can work out the correct amount of traction and torque to feed each wheel. Plus it also helps stabilise the car in all sorts of demanding conditions.

With all that power comes responsibility. Responsibility to be able to stop in time! Hence the BMW X6 xDrive50i gets its own set of unique brakes. Lightweight brakes with discs measuring 385 millimetres (only 5 mm smaller than the Aston Martin DBS!).

BMW X6 xDrive50i

Power and technology aside, standard equipment includes everything already available in the six-cylinder petrol and diesel X6 models plus: special 20-inch light alloy wheels, Adaptive Drive, Self-levelling Pneumatic Suspension, Comfort Access, electrically adjustable front Comfort Seats, Head-Up Display, four-zone Automatic Climate Control, 16-speaker Hi-Fi system, gear-shift paddles mounted on the steering wheel for the six-speed automatic gearbox and interior and exterior mirrors with automatic anti-dazzle function.

Out of the box a the interior is crafted in a premium “Nevada” leather upholstery with the option of a perforated finish in combination with seat heating and ventilation.

BMW X6 xDrive50i

Four interior trim finishes are available as well, ash or bamboo dark grain fine-wood, Aluminium, finely brushed lengthwise, and Aluminium Flywheel Black.

Telling the twin-turbo V8 apart from its smaller brothers isn’t that hard. If the 20 inch wheels don’t grab your attention, maybe the satin-finish window surrounds, Titanium-coloured kidney grilles and a satin chrome side strip, while two rectangular form chrome tailpipes might do the trick?

Prices start from $145,000 plus dealer delivery and on road costs. The X6 xDrive50i will be available from December 2008 from BMW dealers Australia-wide.



    Seen one parked next to a Rextona by SSangyong, you know what, THE BMW DESIGN TEAM COPIED THE KOREANS!




  • Liam

    Even though Tom Ford reckons the X6 drives really well, I still can’t see the point in this travesty. Cracking engine, though!

  • Iz

    Anyone else hate how “xDrive” sounds as a badge name?

    If I ever get one (dream on), I’d tick the model designation delete option, cant stand the sound of it.

    What was wrong with the simple designations like 3.0sd and 4.8i etc? (Or better yet, who hired the 10yr old to name things..)

    Sure its BMW’s attempt to promote their x-Drive AWD system, but still, you dont see Toyota naming their Prius the HYBRID SYNERGY DRIVE Prius do you? It just says Prius. With a little badge saying “Hybrid Synergy Drive” underneath it.

  • B///M3

    Fantastic car!!!!! Although for $145,000 the E90 ///M3 is a lot more tempting though.

  • Devil666

    Anyone else a little underwhelmed by those figures for a TTV8? I can imagine the torque curve is flat enough to serve a banquet on but 9kw off the M3′s NA 4.0? Something is not right.

  • GTRmon

    I agree devil. Classic case of undertuning. Give it a new map, pumps and injectors, redo IHE, you’ve got yourself surely an easy 350-400. Hell, with larger turbos, thing should pull way over the 400 mark, with a bit of lag as a trade off.

    Still hate this car though. No SUV will ever be a performance car. Full stop. Put this engine in the M3 and I’ll start saving now.

  • victory

    I agree Iz. Not a fan of the badge name. I went to the launch of the X6 at Adelaide Motors and seeing that badge on the door kind of cheapens the car. keep it simple BMW. nice car though, no doubt.

  • Twilight

    i’d buy one…

    the fact is, YES the engine statistics may dissapoint some, but read the article, it has intentionally been de-tuned.

    this is because BMW take pride in there ‘M’ vehicles, and if this power output where to surpass or be better than an ‘M’ variant, then whats the point? (only new M car i can think of with less power would be the Z4-M, but thats a small roadster with better 0-100 times etc..)

    just wait for the X6-M, that thing is gonna absolutely hammer! *can’t wait*

  • http://deleted Alex

    Ahhh, BMW trying to go green with a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8. Emphasize the word “trying”. GTRmon, dont say no SUV will ever be a performance car because no doubt one day youll look stupid for it. I dont like performance SUVs but they will get there.

  • ChopstaR87

    Yes the NA V8 of the M3 does have more Kws – 309Kw to the 300Kw in the X6… but the M3 only has 400Nm and the X6 actually has 600Nm so it does have more power

  • GTRmon

    Alex, there are these crazy things called “centre of mass” and “body roll”. That’s why you can’t make a performance SUV.
    Plus the design philosophy is all wrong. A performance car is about minimal compromises. An SUV is about space and convenience. You can’t mix the two, ever.

    Take a high performance “family sedan” like a HSV GTS, it’s still not as fast as a Corvette. Compromise, it’s all about compromise.

  • Captain Mainwaring

    The more you see of this pig, it doesn’t get any prettier.

  • Alex

    GTRmon, I disagree because we didn’t have stability control 15 years ago and that changed things alot so maybe they’ll invent something else. I suppose we’ll find out.

  • Ty

    Whoever suggested putting bigger tubos on this thing is kidding themselves. They are quick spool like the 3 litre TT. Very hard engine to remap as well but the experts will get around that as they did the 3 litre. Don’t take as gospel what BMW quote the figures as, they are only for the glossy brochures. There have been many who have driven 335i’s straight off the showroom floor in the states to their mates dyno machines and ran numbers 10-15 % higher than what BMW have claimed. I think you will find thay have undertstated the power of this car as well.

    Being turbo charged it will also be heavily affected by altitude and temperature.

  • Reckless1

    Saw three of these while driving through Toorak last week.

    Hideous in the flesh.

  • icejagans

    doesn’t go off road does it?

  • someone

    you aussies you never learn something about hot and nice cars,, damn you all who say that x6 is bad car,, you go and drive ur cheap ford and holden which is really crappy and full of plastic and never ever compare german car with ur shitty bad quality cars and you all cant even ride luxury can and stick ur asses in old japanese cars which you think its nice which are rubbish..

  • Perth

    I borrowed one of these for a weekend. Could not fault the handling and drive. I just wish they were built in Germany and not USA. Generally, the quality of US made BMWs are much more inferior compared to the Germans. I have an X5 and a new 325i coupe. They are miles apart in quality. But X6 is an amazing vehicle. Get one before oil runs out!.

  • andre

    the ultimate wanker machine….

  • Angus

    “andre Says:
    September 29th, 2008 at 8:12 pm
    the ultimate wanker machine….”

    Who needs a wanker machine when you can just write in forums for nothing?

    Andre, you’ve demonstrated just how effective it can be!!

  • George

    awesome engine. dont like the look of it. basically a sedan put on a 4×4 suspension, looks strange. we have the twin turbo diesel x5 which i think is so much better, especially with such awesome fuel economy while still nearly being as quick as the v8 x5

  • Saan_89


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