The Car Connection BMW X7 Overview
The BMW X7 is the German automaker's first proper three-row crossover SUV.
Based on the smaller BMW X5, the X7 has bold styling, a longer wheelbase, and a standard third row to set it apart from its less-costly sibling.
When it hits dealers in the spring of 2019, the BMW X7 will be available with a choice of twin-turbo inline-6 or V-8 engines paired to 8-speed automatic transmissions with standard all-wheel drive. With the 2019 X7, BMW finally has a direct rival for the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class and Audi Q7, among other high-end luxury SUVs.
The X7 comes standard with seating for seven—two in the third row. Optional captain's chairs likely to be popular with X7 buyers drop its capacity to six but provide a walk-through to the third row. With the second and third rows folded flat, the X7 can accommodate nearly 90 cubic feet of cargo.
Although automatic emergency braking is an option, the X7 comes well-equipped with luxuries such as a 12.3-inch configurable screen for its instrument cluster and a 12.3-inch touchscreen for infotainment with advanced voice controls and available gesture controls. BMW offers Harman Kardon and Bowers & Wilkins audio systems as an upgrade over a standard stereo system.
The xDrive40i serves as the gateway to the X7 lineup with its 335-horsepower inline-6, which is tasked with moving 5,400 pounds of unladen SUV. The xDrive50i features a twin-turbo V-8 puts out 456 hp and 479 pound-feet of torque and it's paired to a sport rear differential to provide it with better grip on a twisty road.
Both X7s are rated to tow up to 7,500 pounds with the optional trailer hitch.
All X7s ride on an air suspension that's height adjustable. An optional suspension connects to a forward-facing camera system that watches the road ahead and adjusts ride quality ahead of pavement imperfections.
The X7 sits relatively high off the ground with 8.7 inches of running ground clearance. Its suspension can be raised for better off-road clearance, but it's not likely to be a proper mud plugger like the Range Rover.
With distant relatives in the SUV world that include the new Rolls-Royce Cullinan, the X7 still has room to grow. It's likely BMW will offer plug-in hybrid versions within a couple of years, and ultra-luxury models are sure to follow.
The X7 is built alongside BMW's other SUVs—the X3 and X4, X5 and X6—at the automaker's assembly facility in Greer, South Carolina.