The third of BMW's X models will go on sale in the UK next May. Like the X3 and X5 ranges, all versions of the X6 will have four-wheel drive, but unlike them the new car is a coupé with - BMW promises - sporting characteristics.
The X6 is also the first BMW model ever to be available only with turbocharged engines. The £41,955 entry-level X6 xDrive30d (BMW has not picked an especially elegant naming system) uses a single-turbo six-cylinder diesel engine which produces a maximum of 235bhp. This is the most economical X6, with a combined figure of 34.4mpg and CO2 emissions of 217/gkm - just low enough to put the car in VED Band F.
The other diesel in the range is the £44,135 286bhp twin-turbo xDrive35d, which has very similar economy to the 30d but is somewhat quicker, with a top speed of 147mph and a 0-62mph time of 6.9 seconds.
Those performance figures are matched by the £42,625 xDrive35i, which uses the award-winning 306bhp three-litre six-cylinder petrol engine also found in the 1-Series and 3-Series. This is a beautiful engine, but inevitably the 35i uses a lot more fuel than the 35d, with a combined economy figure of 25.9mpg.
That completes the initial line-up. Later in 2008, these three models will be joined by the xDrive50i; no price has yet been confirmed, but we do know that this car will have a twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 engine producing 408bhp and giving a 0-62mph time of 5.4 seconds (top speed is electronically limited to 155mph).
BMW has packaged this engine very cleverly. Both the turbochargers and the catalytic convertor are mounted between the two banks of cylinders, which allows the V8 to fit under the bonnet with no need to alter the design of the front suspension.