By Otsile Kadiege
In recent times, the design team at BMW has been coming up with some of the boldest designs we’ve ever seen in the automaker’s history and the all-new XM is no different. The latest addition to the BMW M line up is the automaker’s first-ever model – a blank canvas – as such we believe it can get away with its daring looks.
Sinister exterior design
On the outside, the new BMW XM exudes supreme presence thanks to its sinister and bold exterior design accentuated by an illuminated large grille with horizontal slats and ‘XM’ badging. The gaping grille is flanked by split slim headlights, which are similar to those found on the new 7 Series and the facelifted X7.
Its side profile features M exterior mirrors, a coupe-like roofline and slim window graphics. As standard, the XM is fitted with 21-inch light alloy wheels. Customers can opt for bigger 22- or 23-inch light alloy wheels. The XM’s bold and edgy exterior design is continued at its rear end where it sports vertical quad exhaust trims (two on each end), ultra-slim LED taillights with sculpted design and accentuated width.
Other noteworthy features include a flat, near seamlessly fitted rear window with BMW logos engraved into the rear window recalling the legendary BMW M1. The exterior dimensions of the new BMW XM are as follows: 5110mm length, 2005 mm width, 1755 mm height and a wheelbase of 3105 mm.
Luxurious M lounge
Much of the new XM’s interior design has been carried over from the Concept XM. The cockpit and front seats are designed entirely around an active driving experience. Standard specification includes M multifunction seats, knee pads and a model-specific M leather steering wheel, along with M-specific graphics including shift lights for the BMW Curved Display formed by a 12.3-inch information display and a control display with a screen diagonal of 14.9 inches, BMW iDrive 8 operating system and BMW Head-Up Display.
At the rear, the XM features heated backrests extending well into the sides of the rear compartment and specially designed cushions are said to offer passengers luxurious levels of comfort. Its sculptural headliner is quite unique with its three-dimensional prism structure, photo mount-style border and 100 LED units for illumination.
There’s a choice of four different trims for customising the interior, as well as a new Vintage leather for the upper sections of the instrument panel and door panels. Other noteworthy features include ambient lighting, four-zone automatic climate control, the Harman Kardon Surround Sound System and the Travel & Comfort System are all standard features too, while the options list includes the Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround Sound System with 1,500-watt amplifier and four additional speakers in the roof area.
First-ever V8 plug-in hybrid
The M Hybrid drive system in the BMW XM delivers an overall output of 480kW (generated by the combination of the combustion engine with up to 360kW and the electric drive system with up to 145kW). It is underpinned by a newly developed, high-revving V8 engine with cutting-edge M TwinPower Turbo technology. The 4.4-litre unit features a cross-bank exhaust manifold and an optimised oil separation process.
The eight-cylinder engine is assisted in its task by an electric motor integrated into the eight-speed M Steptronic transmission. According to BMW, the motor’s propulsive power is instantly on tap when pulling away and is said to deliver unhesitating response to every movement of the accelerator. The M Hybrid drive system produces maximum overall torque of 800Nm (engine with up to 650Nm combined with electric motor developing up to 280Nm). The new XM is equipped with a pre-gearing stage which is said to increase the electric motor’s effective maximum torque to 450Nm (332 lb-ft) at the transmission input. The BMW XM Label Red will be added to the model range in autumn 2023. The most powerful road-legal series-produced car in the history of BMW M GmbH will summon up system output of 550kW (generated by the combination of the combustion engine with up to 430kW and the electric drive system with up to 145kW) and maximum system torque of 1,000Nm (generated by the combination of the combustion engine with up to 750Nm and the electric drive system with up to 280Nm.
BMW claims the XM sprints from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.3 seconds, accompanied by an energy-charged soundtrack of rare emotional appeal for an eight-cylinder unit. This originates from its sports exhaust system featuring electronically controlled, continuously adjustable flaps and hexagonal dual tailpipes arranged one above the other for the first time on a BMW M model.
The M Hybrid button on the centre console is used to select one of three operating modes, including an Electric setting for cruising with zero local emissions at speeds of up to 140 km/h and over a maximum distance of 82 – 88 km in the WLTP cycle. This is thanks to the lithium-ion high-voltage battery mounted in the car’s underbody and the 25.7kWh of usable energy it provides. The Combined Charging Unit in the BMW XM enables AC charging at up to 7.4kW.
The power generated by the drive duo is channeled to the road via the all-wheel-drive system M xDrive, whose rear-biased setup is said to be particularly noticeable in 4WD Sport mode. Drivers can also select 4WD Sand mode, which has been conceived specifically for driving over dunes and similar surfaces. Operation of the M Sport differential in the rear axle is also fully variable.
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