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Old 09-11-2020, 03:06 AM   #1
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1973 25' Tradewind
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Can a BMW X6M get any more thirsty?

Perhaps a bit of an odd question but thought I'd throw it out there...

I drive a BMW E71 X6M. Normally get about 18 miles to Imperial gallon which is not pleasant given cost of gas in the UK.

We are hoping to purchase a restored 1973 Trade Wind and I'm wondering how much worse the fuel economy can get. Does anyone have any experience pulling trailers with M Power (or similar) vehicles?

I'm hoping that (against all the laws of physics) that it won't actually make a massive distance based on a trip to Germany where I (believe it or not) I saw same fuel consumption at 90mph as I did at 130mph (not towing obviously).

My other ride is an old Wrangler TJ, which is a bit old for the job but I'm also thinking about trading both the TJ and the X6 for a new Wrangler, so if anyone has any thoughts on this. Please be gentle!

Cheers -- David
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Old 09-11-2020, 03:13 AM   #2
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You're just fishing without bait....right?

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Old 09-11-2020, 07:18 AM   #3
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You might get one half the miles per gallon towing that you do driving. Most likely less than half.
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Old 09-11-2020, 07:19 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DMStephenson View Post
Perhaps a bit of an odd question but thought I'd throw it out there...

I drive a BMW E71 X6M. Normally get about 18 miles to Imperial gallon which is not pleasant given cost of gas in the UK.

We are hoping to purchase a restored 1973 Trade Wind and I'm wondering how much worse the fuel economy can get. Does anyone have any experience pulling trailers with M Power (or similar) vehicles?

I'm hoping that (against all the laws of physics) that it won't actually make a massive distance based on a trip to Germany where I (believe it or not) I saw same fuel consumption at 90mph as I did at 130mph (not towing obviously).

My other ride is an old Wrangler TJ, which is a bit old for the job but I'm also thinking about trading both the TJ and the X6 for a new Wrangler, so if anyone has any thoughts on this. Please be gentle!

Cheers -- David
You already have the BMW and plan to get the trailer. Why not wait and try out the combo, assuming you can get it properly set up? You may like the way it works. If not, youíll know a lot more then and can make a more informed decision.

Just a thought.

Jim
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Old 09-11-2020, 07:58 AM   #5
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I agree that your gas mileage will drop by about half when towing with the BMW. The fuel is burned dragging the big front end of the trailer through the air. Going slower helps with mileage. A diesel SUV will burn less fuel, but still more than normal. Laws of physics....
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Old 09-11-2020, 08:14 AM   #6
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You already have the BMW and plan to get the trailer. Why not wait and try out the combo, assuming you can get it properly set up? You may like the way it works. If not, youíll know a lot more then and can make a more informed decision.

Just a thought.

Jim
Yep...when 'ya hook the fish, then see if you can reel it in.

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Old 09-11-2020, 08:32 AM   #7
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Turbocharged and supercharged gas engines are OK for MPG when not under boost, but as soon as you bring the boost up as you will when towing demands it, your MPG will as you fear will drop drastically. Slightly OT, but your tongue weight limitations with the X6M will be an issue with the Tradewind. Apparently European rules let you tow more, but that does not get you around the tongue weight limit. My son tows with a X6M, and I have a supercharged V6 Canyon and can tell you that MPG with mine drops by 30% on average when towing, and I have seen as low as 8 MPG on a long grade at steady 70 MPH, (no data on the X6M yet). I am amazed at how big some of the trailers are that the Brits tow with mid size SUV, but seems to be a fairly common thing.
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Old 09-11-2020, 09:17 AM   #8
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Hi all!
A few years ago I sold our 72 Safari 23 to a couple on the East coast. He came to Ohio driving a BMW X6 with a diesel. I was a little worried since we always towed with Suburbans ( diesel and gas models. We hooked up his brake unit and I lowered the hitch to his BMW. It didnít move an inch.
We said goodbye and in a couple of days he emailed. They went through the mountains of Pennsylvania and stayed overnight then home to Connecticut. He said it did great and got 15 mph. I wish my Chevys would have made that kind of MPH.
I still believe it is as much about control and braking when all hell brakes loose though!
Good luck, safe travels!
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Old 09-11-2020, 09:20 AM   #9
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Hi all!
A few years ago I sold our 72 Safari 23 to a couple on the East coast. He came to Ohio driving a BMW X6 with a diesel. I was a little worried since we always towed with Suburbans ( diesel and gas models. We hooked up his brake unit and I lowered the hitch to his BMW. It didnít move an inch.
We said goodbye and in a couple of days he emailed. They went through the mountains of Pennsylvania and stayed overnight then home to Connecticut. He said it did great and got 15 mph. I wish my Chevys would have made that kind of MPH.
I still believe it is as much about control and braking when all hell brakes loose though!
Good luck, safe travels!
That's all well and good....but we usually cruise at 60-65MPG.

Bob
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Old 09-11-2020, 09:46 AM   #10
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My experiences for comparison:

E70 X5 4.8i (V8): Without towing, 18-20 mpg (US). Towing (3000lbs), 10-11 mpg at 65mph.

F15 X5 35i (I6, Twinpower turbo): Without towing, 22-24 mpg (US). Towing (3000lbs), 11-12 mpg at 65 mph.

Above is from memory. The turbo I6 has slightly less HP than the naturally aspirated V8. Obviously, the turbo is helping a lot. Not sure what engine is in the X6M. But, I bet your results will be in the sub 10 mpg (US) range due to a heavier load. BTW, the transmission on the F15 is way better at towing than the E70. With E70, I had to keep it in sport mode or it would constantly lock and unlock the torque converter at the slightest grade changes. The F15 does not do that.
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Old 09-11-2020, 10:04 AM   #11
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It won't necessarily be that bad, I seem to get the same MPG whether towing or not with my old 2003 3.2 litre diesel Shogun. Maybe you'll be lucky
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Old 09-11-2020, 10:25 AM   #12
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An X6M is not a diesel. The X6M has a published fuel economy of about 21 mpg (US). Real world is probably closer to 20 mpg. Compare that to my 35i at 24 mpg and do the math/assumptions. I am guessing 9-10 mpg while towing (combined average). Like was said by others...about half.
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Old 09-11-2020, 10:33 AM   #13
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Going to depend on your driving style. If you are economy minded it will do 10-12 mpg, maybe a bit better when not driving in traffic or the mountains. However, if you use the power of the M to improve towing performance to anything like the unladen vehicle, it will be 8 mpg. My 35i climbs at 6 mpg. If that won't do the job, it shifts down, slows and remains at 6 mpg. Bet your 6M will do similar. Pat

EDIT - fishing - tisk, tisk, tisk - go back to the camp fire

Wrangler - while I like the 4 door Wrangler for what it is, a much better vehicle than the two door, it does not belong in the Tow Vehicle lane as opposed to the X. So, no, no, no!
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Old 09-11-2020, 10:43 AM   #14
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Not an M but my X5d gets 19mpg pulling our 16 Bambi at 65mph. Without towing it does 32mpg at 80mph. So a bit more than a 50% decline in mpg.
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Old 09-12-2020, 09:55 PM   #15
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Based on two different tow vehicles, my towing mileage dropped about one third. For my 2008 Tundra, solo on the highway is 19 mpg, towing my 5,000 lb Tradewind it drops to 13 mpg. I do tow gently though.

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Old 09-13-2020, 09:44 AM   #16
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As a side note, both the Diesel and the Gas V8 produce around 550 ft-lbs of torque so no shortage of towing power. Not sure about Diesel but the gas motor peaks up at 2200 rpm and fairly flat all the way to fuel cutoff.
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Old 09-14-2020, 02:51 AM   #17
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Thanks everyone

Thank you to everyone for their contributions.

I'm feeling that perhaps it's time to chop the M and buy a newer, more efficient X6.

I must confess I don't understand the 'fishing' comments, however if I've offended anyone with a breach of forum etiquette then please accept my apologies.

Best regards -- David
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Old 09-15-2020, 09:14 AM   #18
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X6m

You may want to consider a pre-owned X5d. Itís really a strong tow vehicle and gets much better mileage.
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Old 09-15-2020, 01:36 PM   #19
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You may want to consider a pre-owned X5d. Itís really a strong tow vehicle and gets much better mileage.


I agree. Maybe a good time to sell a gas BMW and buy a diesel BMW. Maybe a BMW Certified one with a great warranty.

Dan
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Old 09-15-2020, 03:10 PM   #20
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Consider a new BMW diesel. The OP is in the UK, after all.
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