The latest images reveal more aggressive overall styling and slightly lower stance for the performance pair, though there remains a healthy amount of wheel-arch gap. The hood, front air dam, and headlights are virtually identical on the BMW X5 M and X6 M.
Unique 20in split five-spoke wheels, absolutely enormous brake discs that could pull double duty as pizza pans and a sporty rear diffuser/exhaust area add to the M-specific appeal. Inside, a two-tone leather treatment with M branding complete the first-ever M-SUVs.
Both models are powered by a newly-developed 4.4L V8 M engine delivering 555hp (412kW) at 6,000rpm and 500lb-ft (677Nm) of torque from a low 1,500 to 5,650rpm - enough to send the vehicles from 0-60mph in just 4.5 seconds.
This new M engine is the world's first with a pulse-tuned exhaust manifold encompassing both rows of cylinders combined with high-performance twin-scroll twin turbo technology. Two low-mass twin-scroll turbochargers are positioned together with the catalytic converters in the "V" section between the two banks of cylinders. By reversing the flow of gases through the engine from traditional arrangements, the intake and exhaust ducts are shortened and widened. The result is that pressure losses on the exhaust side are minimized.
This configuration, known as Cylinder-bank Comprehensive Manifold (CCM), offers quick turbo spooling, a linear build-up of engine power, and a broad, consistent torque curve by feeding each of the twin turbochargers with a "charge pulse" at approximately every 90 degrees of crankshaft rotation, rather than the more traditional "irregular schedule" of charging. Maximum boost pressure is set at 1.5bar (21psi).
BMW M engineers have also reworked the full drivetrain and chassis, adding new M-specific adaptive suspension, an uprated intelligent xDrive AWD system, and newly-developed Servotronic power steering.
Also featured for the first time on an M model is a six-speed automatic transmission, which for the X5 M and X6 M also comes with an electronic selector on the center console and offers three different driving modes – Drive, Sport and M Manual modes for absolute control of gear selection.