BMW has added a new 455kW/1100Nm “M60” flagship to itsAustralian iX range set to land in mid-2022 to compete with the Tesla Model X Plaid
A new flagship M60 grade of the 2022 BMW iX was revealed overnight at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas with up to 455kW of power, 1100Nm of torque and 566km of WLTP range from its twin electric motors and 105.2kWh battery.
The latest addition to the iX range takes the large electric SUV into performance car territory with a claimed 0-100km/h sprint time of 3.8 seconds and 250km/h top-speed.
You’ll be able to identify the most powerful version of the BMW iX by its exterior black pack, ‘Titanium Bronze’ 22-inch alloy wheels and sportier bumpers.
When it launches in Australia by the middle of 2022, the AWD iX M60 will join BMW’s high-performance i4 M50 electric five-door coupe, and serve as a direct competitor for the 470kW Audi e-tron S ($165,500 before on-roads) and the 761kW Tesla Model X Plaid that is yet to be priced for Australia.
Like its American rival Tesla, BMW has also not yet confirmed a local price for the iX M60, though the performance flagship is expected to command at least a $20,000 premium over the current range-topping xDrive50 which costs $169,900 before on-road costs.
Next year is a special one for BMW’s M division, which celebrates 50 years since its inception and will do so not only with the electric performance cars coming to Australia, but also the plug-in hybrid XM performance SUV that will likely supplant the iX M60 at the head of BMW’s electrified crossover line.
The iX M60’s 105.2kWh usable (111.5kWh gross) lithium-ion battery is shared with the iX xDrive50 though the M60’s additional grunt drops the maximum achievable WLTP range from 630km to 566km – representing about a 10 percent decrease in range in return for maximised performance.
Charging is capped at 200kW on a DC fast-charger which will allow the battery to be replenished from 10-80 percent in 35 minutes. At home, a maximum of 11kW AC charging is possible, allowing a full recharge in about 11 hours.
Grunt is sent to all-four wheels from a pair of electric motors with combined outputs of 455kW of power and 1100Nm of torque for a maximum of 10 seconds, or when using launch control.
Normally, the iX still offers outputs of 397kW/1015Nm, impressive when compared to the 385kW/765Nm the xDrive50 kicks out.
This M60 isn’t a full-fat M car like an X5 M Competition, but rather an M Performance variant akin to an M340i or M550i. That means it won’t get any major geometry and hardware tweaks, but the M division has retuned the adaptive air suspension to increase body control and sharpen responses to the driver’s inputs.
BMW has also upgraded the braking system to deal with the extra grunt, with dark blue calipers hidden behind large 22-inch alloy wheels.
The underpinnings of the iX incorporate carbon fibre reinforced plastic in the roof and doors in combination with aluminium to form a strong basis for the car’s performance.
In regular xDrive40 or 50 form, the iX is all about spaciousness, relaxation and occupant comfort. The M60 gives a sportier feel with an anthracite headlining and black leather upholstery.
Technology includes a curved 12.3-inch digital driver’s display and the same size touchscreen in the centre running BMW’s eight-gen operating system with live-traffic navigation functionality, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Optionally BMW will offer a premium Bowers & Wilkins sound system, ventilated front seats and laser headlights when the iX M60 hits Australian shores in mid-2022.
All prices listed are before on-road costs.
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