2023 BMW XM – interior, exterior, launch control and drive

20BMW XM – interior, exterior, launch control and drive

2023 BMW XM
Vehicle Type: front-engine, front-motor, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door wagon

Base: $159,995

twin-turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 32-valve 4.4-liter V-8, 483 hp, 479 lb-ft + AC motor, 194 hp, 207 lb-ft (combined output: 644 hp, 590 lb-ft; 19.2-kWh lithium-ion battery pack; 7.4-kW onboard charger)
Transmission: 8-speed automatic

Wheelbase: 122.2 in
Length: 201.2 in
Width: 78.9 in
Height: 69.1 in
Passenger Volume, F/R: 57/54 ft3
Cargo Volume, Behind F/R: 64/19 ft3
Curb Weight (C/D est): 6100 lb

60 mph: 3.8 sec
100 mph: 9.2 sec
1/4-Mile: 12.2 sec
Top Speed: 155–168 mph

Combined/City/Highway: 19/18/20 mpg
Combined Gasoline + Electricity: 45 MPGe
EV Range: 30 mi

The 2023 BMW XM takes some time to digest as a fusion of style, luxury, and speed garnished with electrification. It’s already an acquired taste as a plug-in hybrid SUV. However, as the new flagship of the company’s M performance division, as well as its first bespoke model since the M1 supercar of the 1970s, the XM has drawn attention since its debut as a concept in 2021, and not just because of its illuminated kidney grilles and dazzling body jewelry.

The base price for dining with the XM is $159,995. This is a fatty two-row SUV weighing in at around 6100 pounds, which is several hundred pounds heavier than the previous three-row X7.

Mechanically related to that model and the smaller X5 and X6, the XM shares its 122.2-inch wheelbase with its larger sibling yet is 2.4 inches shorter, a smidge wider, and with a roofline 3.1 inches lower. This is a big vehicle, though it manages its visual heft well, especially if you choose a darker color and forgo the no-cost NightGold Metallic exterior trim.

Despite its flashy photos and a variety of BMW Individual paint options, the XM can be stylishly understated if desired. Summer tires wrapped around massive 23-inch wheels, which can also be finished in gold, are standard, with 22-inchers available as an option. All-season tires are not available, as they are on other M models.

The XM, which is built in Spartanburg, South Carolina, currently comes in only one configuration: 644 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque, making it the most powerful BMW SUV available. Later this year, a more exclusive Label Red version with at least 735 horsepower and a starting price of $185,000 or more will be added. For the time being, the recipe includes 483 horsepower from a twin-turbo 4.4-liter V-8 engine and 194 horsepower from an electric motor sandwiched between the engine and the eight-speed automatic transmission. All of that power is channeled through a rear-biased all-wheel-drive system and an electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential. With the help of launch control, an estimated 3.8-second 60-mph time should put the XM on par with an X7 M60i.

An estimated 3.8-second 60-mph time with launch control should make the XM as quick as an X7 M60i, which has only 523 horsepower. As you’d expect from a modern BMW, you can customize the XM’s flavor by adjusting the powertrain, suspension, steering effort, and brake pedal response.

Though many performance SUVs are faster, few have the XM’s all-electric capability. Under the floor is a large (for a PHEV) lithium-ion battery with 19.2 kWh of usable capacity, which should provide around 30 miles of EV range. The EPA has yet to release figures, but depending on how you drive it, fuel economy will range from thirsty to thrifty.

The quoted top speed as an EV is 87 mph, compared to 155 or 168 mph at full throttle, depending on whether you opt for the $2500 M Driver’s package. There are two levels of regenerative braking: very little and some, with the majority of the energy recuperation neatly integrated into the pedal that controls the large six-piston front and single-piston rear brakes. Forget one-pedal driving, but the XM’s V-8 isn’t required for short trips around town. The 7.4-kW onboard charger can charge the battery from 0 to 100% in about three hours using a 240-volt outlet.

The XM follows in the footsteps of the M car on twisty mountain roads. We wish more new BMWs had such smooth, progressive steering with welcome feedback and a gradual increase in effort in corners. While the XM’s mass prevents it from feeling overly racy, adaptive dampers, 48-volt active anti-roll bars, and rear-axle steering assist in keeping it flat and poised around bends. Overall power delivery is strong in Sport mode, with the electric motor’s immediate assistance lending the XM extra thrust out of tight turns while helping to fill in the torque gaps between transmission shifts.

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