BMW is set to light up the luxury SUV world with an all new X6 which comes with a new, bolder variation of the Munich maker's traditional kidney-shaped grille that can be fitted with built-in illumination.
The X6 has been around for almost a decade now and it's fair to says that it was a pacesetter, blending the signature attributes of a 4x4 with the DNA of a classical coupe. In an instant it created a new category of car - the Sports Activity Coupe.
Combining the benefits of a high-riding, all-wheel-drive off-roader with a slick, edgy design, it could never be described as good looking, but it captured the imagination of those who just wanted something a bit different and, with sales of 443,000 units worldwide across two model generations, its success has been undeniable.
Now, with a refreshed and blatantly more aggressive design, advanced powertrain and chassis technology, top-class equipment features, dynamic handling, innovative new operating tech and driver assistance systems, the third generation X6 looks set to deliver once again.
It will be premiered at the Frankfurt international motor show in September. The market launch will follow in December with UK prices starting from £59,340.
It's slightly longer and wider than before with a wider front track and longer wheelbase and sits lower on the road with a lower centre of gravity than its predecessor.
Three trim levels are available - Sport, M Sport and M Performance - while the engine line-up includes two petrol units and a pair of diesel variants.
Topping the X6 range is the X6 M50i powered by a newly developed petrol V8, while the X6 M50d features a six-cylinder in-line diesel engine and four turbochargers. The X6 xDrive40i and X6 xDrive30d are powered by a straight six petrol and straight-six diesel respectively, while all models come as standard with an eight-speed Steptronic transmission, dynamic damper control and the BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system.
Standard equipment from the Sport version upwards includes adaptive two-axle air suspension, a leather steering wheel and aluminium detailing, LED headlights, leather upholstery, electrically adjustable and heated sports seats, 2.5-zone automatic climate control, ambient lighting,
The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant is included as standard along with Live Cockpit Professional as part of a new operating system which includes 12.3 inch high-resolution instrument and infotainment screens.
The system's features include a built-in SIM card, an adaptive navigation system with a hard-drive-based multimedia system, along with two USB ports plus Bluetooth and WiFi.
Additionally, there's a raft of driver assistance and convenience features including cruise control with braking function as well as collision and pedestrian warning with city braking function that alerts the driver when a cyclist is detected.
Park distance control is also fitted as standard and incorporates a rear-view camera, front and rear sensors and a parking assistance system for automatically selecting and manoeuvring into spaces parallel to the road.
As usual there's a whole catalogue of options and extras, not least of which is that novel, illuminated BMW kidney grille which gives that new, mean looking front end an even more distinct look. It forms part of the daylight running light system and is activated by opening or closing the car and functions whilst the vehicle is moving. The driver can switch off the illumination function from the iDrive Menu.