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2006 BMW M6 Preview

BMW punches its big coupe up to 500 horsepower

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2006 BMW M6

When you’re arguably one of the best luxury automotive brands on the market, coming off of a banner sales year, and charged with protecting the reputation of the “ultimate driving machine,” what do you do next? Why, offer selective and well-to-do buyers the 2006 BMW M6, of course. Due to hit lots this May, the 500-horsepower M6 comes ready to play among powerful rich kids with names like AMG, Maserati, and Porsche, all of whom will be forced to respect the BMW’s 500 horsepower and precise athleticism. The 50-yard dash has been supplanted by the 60-mph sprint, a feat accomplished by the M6 in only 4.5 seconds. At nearly $97,000, the M6 is undoubtedly running on a big-boys playground, but this Bimmer promises to make you yearn for recess like you did all those decades ago. With 500 horsepower on tap, the 2006 BMW M6 is the mac daddy of the 6 Series line. The “basic” version offers only 360 horsepower and can be configured as a coupe or convertible, and sells for about $72,000 to $79,000, plus options.

The M6 is available only as a four-passenger coupe and starts at just under $97,000. For you math freaks, that translates to $194 per horse, but like the living and breathing kind, these ponies might run you dry on feed, especially if you run ‘em hard. BMW is well represented in the luxury coupe market with the 6 Series, a model that accommodates four adults and moves briskly thanks to its 360-horsepower, 4.8-liter V8. However, this Bimmer pales in comparison to AMG models from Mercedes-Benz, and lacks the visual appeal of the Porsche 911 Carrera. To combat any relative styling and/or power deficiencies, the 2006 M6 is a must-have for BMW to remain competitive in this highly-exclusive yet lucrative niche of the market. Power for the 2006 BMW M6 comes from the same normally-aspirated, 5.0-liter V10 as found in the magnificent M5 sedan, a car with which this new large coupe shares the MDrive system. Under normal driving conditions, the engine puts out 400 horsepower, more than enough for most folks. But with some quick programming, drivers can unleash 500 horses with a simple tap of the M button on the steering wheel. Torque is rated at 383 lb.-ft. Furthermore, there’s a Sport setting that ties maximum power with a stiffened suspension and a tightened steering system. A seven-speed SMG transmission with Drivelogic directs the 2006 BMW M6’s power to the rear wheels, while a variable locking differential and Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) ensure that all those ponies don’t go up in smoke.

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