We already got a chance to drive the BMW XM in prototype form, but the automaker is still a few months away from unveiling it. The new crossover will debut later this year as the company celebrates 50 years of the BMW M division, but in the meantime, BMW will continue testing it. A new video from the Carspotter Jeroen YouTube channel captures the crossover back at the Nurburgring race track.
The new XM will arrive with a potent plug-in hybrid powertrain that delivers 644 bhp (474 kilowatts) and 650 pound-feet (881 Newton-metres) of torque. It pairs the new twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre S68 V8 engine that’s paired with an electric motor inside the XM-specific ZF 8HP gearbox. That’s below the concept’s 750 bhp (559 kW) and 737 lb-ft (1,000 Nm) figures, but that high-powered model will arrive sometime next year.
Gallery: 2023 BMW XM Prototype: First Drive
The new video shows the large SUV hustling around the German track. BMW continues to hide the design under a camouflage wrap, but we know the SUV will adopt a split-headlight design. BMW’s design boss Domagoj Dukec explained earlier this year that the split-headlight layout gives designers more freedom in styling the front end. Headlights have to meet certain legal standards, so designers have less leeway in their appearance.
While the prototype we drove last month wasn’t a production model, it was about 90-percent complete. Inside, BMW put its new iDrive 8 infotainment system and the Live Virtual Cockpit, giving passengers access to the company’s latest and greatest features.
The BMW XM is only the M brand’s second car ever. It’s not as sleek or as alluring as the M1 supercar, but BMW was quite honest about why the XM is a crossover – SUVs are popular now. The crossover and SUV segment continues to grow, and the XM is a bold product in that space that makes a statement for the brand. As more automakers cater to that segment, others will have to find new ways to stand out.
We’ll get all the details about the crossover when it debuts sometime later this year, which, hopefully, won’t be long. BMW hasn’t provided all of the details just yet. The plug-in hybrid powertrain will allow for pure-electric driving, but BMW hasn’t specified how far the XM will go on just electricity.