2019 BMW X6 vs. 2018 Tesla Model X

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The X6’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Model X doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The X6 has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Model X doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the X6 xDrive’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Model X doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

A passive infrared night vision system optional on the X6 helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The Model X doesn’t offer a night vision system.

The X6’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane. The Model X doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The X6 offers an optional Surround View Cameras to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Model X only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The X6’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Model X doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

The X6 has standard BMW Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Model X doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the X6 and the Model X have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.

Warranty

The X6’s corrosion warranty is 8 years and unlimited miles longer than the Model X’s (12/unlimited vs. 4/50,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X6 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Tesla doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Model X.

There are over 5 times as many BMW dealers as there are Tesla dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the X6’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates rated the X6 first among midsize premium SUVs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Model X isn’t in the top three in its category.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Tesla vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 19 places higher in reliability than Tesla.

Fuel Economy and Range

The X6 s/xDrive35i’s maximum EPA estimated driving range on a full tank of fuel is 537.6 miles, after which it can be refueled at any gas station in minutes. The Model X’s range is only 237 to 295 miles, after which the minimum recharge time is 30 minutes for only a 54% charge at a specially configured quick charge station not available in most areas. A full recharge at a conventional charging station can take up to 82 hours and 53 minutes.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the X6 xDrive50i’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Model X:

 

X6 xDrive50i

Model X

Front Rotors

14.4 inches

14 inches

In an emergency stopping situation, many drivers don’t press the brakes with enough force to stop the vehicle in the shortest distance. The X6 has a standard Brake Assistant to detect emergency braking situations (by how hard and how quickly the brake pedal is pressed) and then automatically apply maximum braking immediately in order to help prevent a collision. The Model X doesn’t offer a brake assist feature.

The X6 stops shorter than the Model X:

 

X6

Model X

 

60 to 0 MPH

105 feet

113 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the X6’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Model X (F:275/40R20 & R:315/35R20 vs. F:265/35R22 & R:285/35R22).

The X6 xDrive50i’s optional 315/30R21 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 30 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Model X’s optional 35 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X6 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Model X doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

The X6 offers an optional space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Model X; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

The X6 has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Model X’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The X6 offers an available adjustable active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Tesla doesn’t offer an active suspension on the Model X.

The X6 xDrive35i handles at .88 G’s, while the Model X 75D pulls only .84 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The X6 xDrive35i executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Model X 75D (26.1 seconds @ .71 average G’s vs. 26.7 seconds @ .7 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the X6 has a 2.1 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Model X (8.3 vs. 6.2 inches), allowing the X6 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

The BMW X6 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 700 pounds less than the Tesla Model X.

The X6 is 4.5 inches shorter than the Model X, making the X6 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Cargo Capacity

The X6 has a larger cargo area than the Model X with its rear seat up (26.6 vs. 26 cubic feet).

The X6’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Model X 6-Passenger doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the X6’s available liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Model X doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Towing

The X6’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Model X’s (6000 vs. 5000 pounds).

While the Model X w/22” wheels can only tow 3500, any X6 can tow a minimum of 6000 pounds.

Servicing Ease

A Condition-Based Service Display is standard on the X6 to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes and spark plug replacement, vehicle inspection based on actual driving conditions. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Tesla doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the Model X.

Ergonomics

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Model X, the X6 offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position, outside mirror angle, climate settings and radio stations and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The X6’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Model X doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The X6 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Model X doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

If the windows are left open on the X6 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can also lower the windows the same way. The driver of the Model X can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the X6 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. Heated windshield washer nozzles cost extra on the Model X.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The X6 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Model X doesn’t offer headlight washers.

The X6’s standard side window demisters help clear frost or condensation from the side windows in the winter. The Model X doesn’t even offer side window demisters, so the driver may have to wipe the windows from the outside to gain side vision.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the X6 has standard extendable sun visors. The Model X doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the X6 keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Model X doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

The X6 has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable. The Model X doesn’t offer a middle row seat center armrest.

Model Availability

The X6 is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Model X doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the X6 owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the X6 with a number “1” insurance rate while the Model X is rated higher at a number “8” rate.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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