Luxury car

Here’s why BMW M’s next standalone car is an SUV, not a coupe

BMW M’s first standalone mannequin for the reason that M1 launched in 1978 will likely be a giant SUV referred to as XM, and is due out earlier than the tip of 2022. Whereas that may sound like a stunning transfer, particularly contemplating among the heritage-laced ideas that BMW has unveiled previously decade, firm boss Frank van Meel argued that there’s a good purpose for launching an SUV relatively than making one other high-power coupe.

“Once we did the M1, each automobile firm that wished to say ‘I’ve one thing particular’ constructed a sports activities automobile — that was the section everybody wished to enter. When you look at this time on the greatest, most necessary, and fastest-growing section, it is clearly the SUV section. And, compared to different producers, we have been nonetheless missing this final expressive luxurious flagship on the prime of M,” he advised Autoblog.

Unveiled as a close-to-production idea in late 2021, and previewed as a close-to-production prototype (proven above) in 2022, the XM will stand out with a love-it-or-hate-it exterior design that seemingly will not change a lot because it transitions from the present flooring to the showroom flooring. Dwelling as much as its positioning because the range-topping M mannequin would require a major quantity of energy, and it feels like BMW will ship. Energy will come from a gasoline-electric plug-in hybrid powertrain constructed round a brand new V8 engine, tuned to develop 650 horsepower.

Right here once more, van Meel identified that the drivetrain is nearer to M’s heritage than it would initially appear.

“In our 50-year heritage, we have at all times checked out racing and series-production vehicles to see the place every one goes and what they’ll be taught from one another. We’re persevering with this with the XM: it has a V8-electric plug-in hybrid system and [our upcoming entry into the LMDh prototype category] additionally has a V8-hybrid drivetrain. You may see that when it really works for racing, it additionally works for the high-performance vehicles.” 

Some purists will argue {that a} coupe with a mid-mounted engine would have been extra becoming. Blame the consumers, on this case.

“After all, there may be the Mercedes-AMG G63, the Lamborghini Urus, the Aston Martin DBX, and so forth. You see all of those high-end, very expressive fashions. For the shoppers, that is one thing that has been lacking at M. That was the largest demand,” he concluded.


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