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High-performance crossover SUVs often seem like exercises in wretched excess, but the 2014 BMW X6 M is the rare example that actually makes perfect sense. After all, the regular X6, a high-riding hatchback based on the X5 crossover, is already absurd. Why not give it 555 horsepower for good measure?

It says something about the wonderful lunacy of BMW’s M Division that it thought the regular X6 needed speed. To wit, the X6 xDrive50i packs 400 hp into its 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V8, which would seem to be more than adequate for anyone. Nonetheless, the X6 M goes in for the full Motorsport treatment, so its similar 4.4-liter V8 yields the aforesaid 555 hp and an astounding 500 lb-ft of torque. If the “ordinary” V8-powered X6 is bonkers fast, the X6 M is just bonkers, period.

The madness continues underneath, where the all-wheel-drive X6′s already massively capable suspension has been reworked to M specifications. In short, we’ve quite simply never had this much fun in a 2.5-ton vehicle. It just doesn’t make sense how quickly and confidently the X6 M gets through tight corners. Somehow this brute manages to drive like a nimble hot hatch despite weighing nearly twice as much and being much taller to boot.

We’ll spare you the common kvetching about the X6′s value and versatility, because especially in M trim, this thing is a rolling middle finger to conventional wisdom. If that’s what you’re after, the 2014 X6 M is one of the most sensible vehicles on the market.


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