Driving | Alex Reid | 10/17/2018
What we mean is you’ll see several design traits carry over from the prototype, including a huge radiator grill – also the largest for a BMW – that almost harkens back to the vertical-style kidneys of vintage Bimmers.
BMW’s largest SUV is built big to fit a lot of stuff, including seven of your friends: three-row seating comes as standard, with the choice of a middle bench seat or two captains’ chairs (the latter drops the occupancy limit down to six).
At 5,151 mm long and 2,000 mm wide, it’s almost as long as a standard wheelbase 7 Series, though it’s certainly taller—1,805 mm tall to be exact (and you know the Germans are). All this girth translates to excellent interior space and cargo room: 326 litres with seats up, or, electronically folded down flat, 2,120 litres.
Keeping passengers comfy is a standard air suspension setup that is self-levelling, so no matter how much stuff you cram into the X7 the suspension will remain on the same plane. Look up and there is a three-part glass roof that extends all the way to the third-row seats for excellent illumination.
To push it down the road you can equip an X7 with a straight-six or a V8; both options come with an eight-speed Steptronic automatic and all-wheel-drive. The single-turbo 3.0-litre six-banger makes 335 horsepower and 330 lb-ft of torque, while the twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 makes 456 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque—that’s a big amount, but it’s needed for an SUV of this size. BMW did not yet say if Canadians would receive a diesel variant, but it’s possible it may become an option in late 2019.
The transmissions can also send 100 per cent of the power to the front or rear wheels depending on the drive mode selected, and there are lots of those to choose from. There are other trick features as well, such as rear-wheel steering, active roll mitigation and an adaptive suspension system that uses the front-facing camera to analyze the road and prepare it for bumps.
The X7 will hit dealers in March of 2019, and we will learn of pricing closer to the release date. In the US, the xDrive40i starts at US$74,895; and the xDrive50i starts at US$93,595.