BMW XM – Future U.S.-made hybrid SUV set for release this year

After nearly five years of rumors and speculations of an SUV above the X7, BMW Group has confirmed that it will launch the BMW XM this year. The company unveiled the BMW Concept XM to give an idea of the car and its features. However, the production version is already undergoing road-testing on the public roads, and car-spotters have filmed prototypes on numerous occasions.

Take a look at what we know so far about BMW’s future performance SUV flagship.

Exterior

The BMW XM is a new and stunning departure from the traditional BMW SUV. The car is designed for customers who are bold, outgoing, and wish to go down a road less traveled.

The giant kidney grille, split headlights, boldly sculpted hood with huge power bulges, aggressive bumpers, super-slim and boldly L-shaped rear lights, and the dual-branch, vertically arranged, hexagonal-shaped, quad tailpipes give a monstrous appearance to the BMW XM concept. The sloping roofline and the sleek window graphic that narrows towards the rear lend it the highly aerodynamic styling of an SUV-coupe.

Compared to the concept, the showroom version of the BMW XM will be less of a drama but still have a clear offbeat style. The designers would need to modify the exterior to ensure everyday usability and safety. Expect larger headlights and rear lights, a smaller kidney grille, and cleaner body panels. The LED searchlights on the roof are unlikely to appear on the production version.

Interior

BMW Concept XM interior dashboard
The BMW XM’s interior will look similar to that of the Concept XM (pictured) with special touches. Image Source: BMW Group

Going by the concept, the interior is rather conventional in the BMW XM. Still, the design somehow has its own suave to set its image as the best upper-class BMW. The dashboard will feature the sleek-looking BMW Curved Display and distinctively designed three vertical AC vents in the center. A passenger grab handle would connect this panel with the center console. Expect plenty of premium trim finishes, including a carbon-fiber option.

Powertrain & Performance

The XM will be the first electrified BMW M high-performance model, and it will be available exclusively as an M Hybrid (electrified) vehicle. The BMW Concept XM sports a newly developed M Hybrid plug-in hybrid powertrain that clubs a V8 engine with an electric motor for a system power of 550 kW (737 hp) and a system torque of 1,000 Nm (737 lb.-ft.). It can travel up to 80 km solely on electric power.

A report from BMW Blog had said that the XM will come in a standard sub-variant and a Competition sub-variant. The XM Competition may have the said plug-in hybrid system that delivers a system output of up to 552 kW (750 PS/740 hp). Considering the hybrid BMW SUV’s flagship status, the xDrive AWD system will be standard, while the transmission should be the 8-speed automatic borrowed from the X7. With such a powerhouse under the skin, calling it the BMW XM is befitting.

Features

From the BMW Laserlight headlights that provide visibility of about half a mile to the BMW iDrive 8 (BMW iDrive with BMW Operating System 8) that offers a whole new user experience and design, the XM should pack the best of best features BMW has to offer. According to a report from BMWBlog, the wheel sizes will range from 21 to 23 inches, a rear differential will be standard, carbon-fiber trim will be available, and sport brakes will be available in dark blue, black, and red color options.

In the middle of 2023, BMW will introduce a self-driving assist feature in the XM, as per the report. The company is working to introduce Level 3 autonomous driving in 2022 on the iX, and models such as the XM should inherit it sooner or later. Currently, it offers Level 2 in the iX and is eyeing a clearer regulator framework for the introduction of the Level 3 autonomous driving system.

Equipment lines

On November 30, 2021, BMWBlog reported that the performance SUV would be available in three equipment lines: BMW XM Red Label, BMW XM Black Label, and BMW XM Competition, although it cautions that this is only a rumor. ‘Competition’ is familiar for a BMW, but Red Label and Black Label are new, presumably conceived to give XM customers a distinguished feeling. The Competition equipment line would be a different model variant in itself, as we discussed in the Powertrain & Performance section.

Production & Release Date

While some take it as an Audi Q8 challenger, the BMW XM is the Bavarian’s answer to the Range Rover Autobiography and Bentley Bentayga. BMW’s former head of development, Klaus Frohlich, had told Autocar UK in 2018 that a product such as the XM certainly has a market in places where this segment was growing fast.

Production of the BMW XM will take place at the company’s Spartanburg plant in the USA. BMW Group says that the United States will be the XM’s most important sales market.

BMW Concept XM side profile
The BMW XM will be the first standalone M model since the legendary BMW M1. Image Source: BMW Group

The production BMW XM should break cover in the second half of 2022, as BMW Group has said that it plans to start making the production BMW XM from the end of the year. According to Bimmerpost forum member ynguldyn, who seems to have insider information of BMW future models, the BMW XM (codename: BMW G09) enters production in December 2022.

BMW XM FAQs

What is the BMW XM release date?

The BMW XM will debut in production form this year. U.S. customer deliveries should commence in early 2023.

What are the rivals to the BMW XM?

The Range Rover Hybrid and Bentley Bentayga are key rivals of the future BMW SUV.

What is the expected price of the BMW XM?

The BMW XM should have a starting price in the region of 110,000-115,000 USD.

Featured Image Source: BMW Group