The world probably doesn't need another big, luxury SUV, but it certainly wants one, and BMW has answered the call. After a number of teases showing off the new flagship SUV from the German automaker, the real deal X7 is finally here in production mode, and it's as dramatic as you thought it would be. Check out that huge maw that doesn't exactly hold back.
The X7 is officially the most expensive BMW in the entire lineup. The xDrive40i starts at $73,900 and the xDrive50i starts at $92,600. The X7 will be powered two engines: a sweet turbo inline-six with 335 horsepower and 330 lb-ft of torque with all-wheel-drive and an eight-speed automatic. The smaller engine will move the heavy X7 to 60 mph in a respectable 5.8 seconds, and the bigger engine, a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 delivers a potent 456 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque, good for a 0-60 mph time of 5.2 seconds.
Underneath all this is BMW's performance-oriented structure and suspension, a double-wishbone front suspension and a five-link rear suspension with a sophisticated and fully adjustable air suspension. The adaptive suspension makes use of camera sensors that send information about road conditions and automatically adjust in response.
But let's get to the most in-your-face aspect of the X7. The exterior. The fact that not much has changed from the concept vehicle's very prominent front fascia is remarkable, especially after some rather critical response on the interwebs. It's the biggest grille ever to shop up on a Bimmer, and that's no exaggeration. There's nothing even close, not even on the new X5. The slim headlights make the grille look even bigger due to the sharp contrast between the two. The large intakes and the big silver chrome trim bar accent piece round out the very busy front end.
The rear is actually more muted, which seems odd to us. The taillights are quite conservative with the only truly dramatic element being the large chrome bar that unites the taillights. The greenhouse is large and provides ample interior space, but we can't help think it looks a lot like the shape of the somewhat unlikeable Lexus GX's greenhouse shape, especially towards the back.
There's plenty of sophisticated creasing and sculpting in the bodywork, and as a whole, it fits nicely into the BMW X family. The front end might be polarizing, but if you think about big, pricey SUVs that command attention (Lincoln Navigator, Cadillac Escalade, Infiniti QX80), BMW couldn't exactly hold back.
The X7 is clearly noticeable from every angle, and we're sure it's the right move for the brand in order to stand out against the competition. Audi and Mercedes are certainly less dramatic in their styling approach, and that may pay off in spades for BMW.
Serious Sophistication and Space
One peek in the interior, and you'll notice that BMW has upped their game without really making any radical changes. The interior basically looks like a more opulent version of the new X5's interior, since the layout and instrumentation are nearly identical. The big optional glass shift knob takes cues from Volvo, but it's much more prominent with numerous surface cuts, not unlike a diamond. Even the iDrive control knob can get the same treatment, though just to the interior bezel. Materials inside are top notice, with plenty of real wood, brushed aluminum, and high-grade leather everywhere.
You can opt for big, comfy captain's chairs in the second row, or you can increase your passenger capacity with a traditional bench seat. The second row can slide fore and aft, and the seats also fold with electric power. Of course, what would a big, luxury SUV be without a third row, and it comes standard on the X7. Capacity is a for seven adults. Oh, and inc ase there's a fancy boat that needs towing, it can pull up to 7,500 pounds.
There's also no lack of cargo space. 48.6 cubic feet is plenty big with all seats in place, while a big 90.4 cubic feet is available with the second and third rows folded flat. Storage space is 48.6 cubic feet with all seats up or 90.4 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded flat. That should be plenty big for the elite to cram their Louis Vuitton luggage in. Then again, we're guessing BMW will sell you some of theirs, too. There's also a full five-zone automatic climate control, soft close doors, heated and cooled cupholders, and adaptive cruise control.
Fancy paint colors include Alpine White, Carbon Black, Black Sapphire, Mineral White, Arctic Grey, and Vermont Bronze with six more colors to follow later in 2019: Jet Black, Dark Graphite, Phytonic Blue, BMW Individual exclusive colors known as Ruby Black, Tanzanite Blue, Pyrite Brown, and Ametrin Red. BMW SensaTec (leatherette) or nine leather colors are available for pairing.
Of course, what would the X7 be without the full bevy of driver assist and safety features customers expect at this price. Standard safety equipment includes extended traffic jam assist and lane keep assist, which monitors the driver alertness level and permits them to take their hands off the steering wheel at speeds up to 37 mph.
Customers can pre-order the X7 starting this month, and deliveries will begin in the spring of 2019. The X7 certainly enters the luxury SUV fray with a lot to offer, and the sheer level of styling drama won't go unnoticed.