The new BMW X5 has only just gone on sale, but our spy photographers have captured the evidence that a new generation of its sister vehicle, the X6, is already undergoing tests ahead of a debut before the end of 2019.

Like the X5, the Mk2 X6 will move onto BMW’s new CLAR platform – an architecture that’s also shared with the likes of the 5 Series and 7 Series. It’ll be built at BMW’s US plant in Spartanburg, North Carolina, alongside the X5. The vehicle caught on the streets of Munich shows a revised profile for the big flagship SUV coupe, bringing it closer to the shape of its smaller stablemate, the X4, thanks to a more rakish rear window line.

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Under the skin, expect the new X6’s technical line-up to mirror that of the X5, with the European range starting with the xDrive30d and rising to the quad-turbo M50d. But there’s should also be an X6 xDrive45e plug-in hybrid, which mixes a straight-six turbocharged petrol engine with an electric motor.

The snappers also captured a more focused, high-performance version of the V6 undergoing tests. This is likely to be the X6 M, which will complete a wider range of rapid BMW SUVs that will also include the X3 M, X4 M and X5 M. The X6 M prototype shows quad tail-pipes that are near certain to be linked up to a 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine, producing around 600bhp and more than 750Nm of torque.

It also gets more aggressive bumpers and trademark M division blue brake calipers – but the test car’s highlighted front grille is a fake. We’d expect the final production version to have gloss-black double bars within the familiar double-kidney shape.

There’s no word yet on a production date for the new X6 but Auto Express understands that it could be revealed in the first half of 2019, with first deliveries due next autumn. The fact that X6 M prototypes are being tested already suggests that the faster variant should follow reasonably swiftly – perhaps with a debut.

What do you think of the new BMW X6? Let us know below…

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