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by Tim Beissmann

The 2015 BMW X6 has been officially revealed, marking the start of a new chapter for the car that created the luxury crossover coupe niche six years ago.

The second-generation X6, revealed inside and out in leaked images just hours ago, will make its public debut in August before launching overseas and in Australia towards the end of 2014.

The new BMW X6 will look to build on the success of the original ‘sports activity coupe’, which has notched up almost 250,000 global sales despite being widely dubbed ‘the answer to the question nobody asked’ by much of the industry early in its life.

The second-gen X6 shares much of its chassis and powertrain hardware, technology, and design with the third iteration of the BMW X5 – the two having been developed alongside each other.

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The new model is almost identical in size to its predecessor, measuring 4909mm long (up 32mm), 1989mm wide (up 6mm) and 1702mm tall (up 3mm), and riding on a matching 2933mm wheelbase.

Its 580-litre boot is 10L larger than before, while folding its new 40:20:40 split rear seats forward opens up 1525L of load space (up 75L over the old model).

The second-generation BMW X6 will launch with three engines, two diesels and one petrol.

The X6 xDrive30d is powered by a turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder turbo diesel engine with 190kW of power (up 10kW) and 560Nm of torque (up 20Nm), the latter produced between 1500-3000rpm. BMW claims a 0.8-second improvement in the xDrive30d’s 0-100km/h time, now rated at 6.7sec, along with a 19 per cent improvement in fuel consumption, now 6.0 litres per 100km.

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The X6 M50d carries over its triple-turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder diesel engine. Power and torque are unchanged at 280kW and 740Nm, though its claimed sprint time dips one-tenth to 5.2 seconds and fuel consumption improves 14 per cent to 6.6L/100km.

The sole petrol variant, the X6 xDrive50i, now produces 330kW and 650Nm from its twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8, up 30kW and 50Nm from before. The extra grunt helps it sprint from 0-100km/h 0.6 seconds quicker, now 4.8sec, yet fuel consumption is down more than 22 per cent to 9.7L/100km.

BMW has also confirmed plans to expand the line-up with 225kW xDrive35i petrol and 230kW xDrive40d diesel variants in 2015.

All-wheel drive is standard across the range, as is an eight-speed automatic transmission with steering wheel-mounted paddleshifters and a launch control function.

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Chassis and steering packages allow customers to individualise the response of their X6. The Comfort adaptive suspension package includes dynamic damper control and air suspension with automatic self-levelling for the rear axle – the electronic control system adapting the car’s damping to the road conditions.

The Dynamic adaptive suspension package claims to introduce sportier handling characteristics, with dynamic performance control and the dynamic drive active roll stabilisation intended to optimise directional stability and reduce body roll.

Drivers can also opt for the Professional adaptive suspension package, which combines the features of the Comfort and Dynamic packages, aiming to deliver the best of both worlds.

Adaptive M suspension, which is standard in the M50d and part of the M Sport package for all other variants, offers the same functionality, with Sport and Sport+ modes delivering firmer spring and damper characteristics.

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Customers can also opt for active steering , which adjusts the steering ratio to the car’s current speed, reducing effort for low-speed manoeuvring and providing sharper response at higher speeds.

Standard driver assist systems include lane departure warning and pedestrian and collision warning system with braking function. Optional features include active cruise control with stop and go function, traffic jam assistant, speed limit info, lane change warning and auto parking.

Interior tech includes a 10.25-inch central display, full-colour head-up display, night vision with dynamic light spot functionality, intelligent emergency call system, and BMW’s full suite of ConnectedDrive services, including satellite navigation with real-time traffic information, a dictating function to turn spoken notes into texts and emails, and applications for accessing internet radio and social media sites like Facebook and Twitter.




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