Munich’s largest SUV debuts with newly-developed V8, but not for Europe
BMW has pulled back the covers on what it calls “a new definition of automotive luxury.” Everybody, this is the all-new, 2019 BMW X7 SUV.
At launch (market debut is scheduled for March 2019), the X7 will sit above the likes of X5, X3, and X1 in BMW’s range. Assembly will be handled by the carmaker’s plant in Spartanburg, US, where four other BMW X models are being made: X3, X4, X5 and X6. Here’s all you need to know about the new BMW X7.
At launch, the new X7 will come in several versions: xDrive 40i, xDrive50i, xDrive30d, and M50d.
Opening the petrol range, the X7 xDrive 40i brings a 3-liter, six-cylinder, inline-six engine mated to the eight-speed Steptronic gearbox. Power output rises to 250 kW (335 hp/340 PS) while torque resides at 450 Nm (332 lb-ft).
The spicier petrol variant is the X7 xDrive50i, which is not coming to Europe. Bummer. This one hides a newly-developed V8 displacing 4.4 liters and offers 340 kW (456 hp/462 PS) and 650 Nm (479 lb-ft) of torque. In this setup, the new X7 takes 5.4 seconds to clear the 0-100 km/h (62 mph) interval before topping out at 250 km/h (155 mph).
In the diesel corner, the entry-level model comes as the X7 xDrive30d. The inline-six diesel engine under the hood displaces 3 liters and makes 195 kW (261 hp/265 PS) and 620 Nm (475 lb-ft) of torque. 0-100 km/h sprint time takes 7 seconds, while top speed sits at 227 km/h (141 mph).
The diesel-powered top dog in the X7 range is the M50d, which makes 294 kW (394 hp/400 PS) and 760 Nm (560 lb-ft) of torque, allowing for a sprint time from naught to 100 km/h (62 mph) cleared in 5.4 seconds and a top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph).
All engines are twinned to BMW’s eight-speed Steptronic transmission.
The new X7 stretches to 5,151 mm in length, 2,000 mm in width and 1,805 mm in height, while also sporting a wheelbase of 3,105 mm. In front of it sits the largest kidney grille ever designed for a BMW model, which might set a trend for the future if we take a look at the BMW Vision iNext concept.
LED headlights are standard spec, but customers can also opt for BMW’s Adaptive LED Headlights that offer a non-dazzling high beam with a range of up to 600 m (1,969 ft, roughly).
Wheels are available in size formats going to as much as 22 inches (the standard wheel offering measures 20 inches), while the slim LED rear lights are connected by a chrome bar, a feature already adopted by the BMW 7 Series.
With luxury being the name of the game here, BMW offers the so-called Design Pure Excellence pack together with the familiar M Sport package as well as exclusive BMW Individual personalization options.
The former, for example, brings matte aluminum grille bars and glossy chrome accents, and Y-spoked 21-inch allow wheels. As for the M Sport pack, well, this one brings all the goodies you already know from other BMW models, like extra air intakes, M twin-spoked wheels made of light alloy and redesigned front/rear aprons and side skirts.
Inside the cabin, the centerpiece is the BMW Live Cockpit Profession setup (available as standard) which incorporates a control display and a fully-digital instrument clusters (both screens measure 12.3 inches in diameter).
The center console hosts a group of buttons and controllers, including the iDrive rotative joystick, gear selector, start/stop button, driving mode selector and electric park brake button.
Optionally, customers can ask for two individual seats for the second row, while the standard configuration includes three rows of seats.
BMW tells us that with all the seats in use, offers 326 liters of cargo space, but that can be increased to 2,120 liters by folding down the backrests of the third-row and second-row seats.
In addition, the standard air suspension lowers the car if needed, for better loading/unloading conditions.
Also standard is a three-section panoramic roof (electrically operated), but customers can also get the Panorama glass roof Sky Lounge, which “generates an exclusive aura when darkness falls, with LED light spreading evenly across the glass surfaces to illuminate more than 15,000 graphic patterns and generate a display reminiscent of a starlit sky.” Fancy.
Besides the infotainment system, the new BMW X7 offers a four-zone automatic climate control setup (that’s the standard specification) and an optional five-zone system coupled with the (also optional) Ambient Air package that handles cabin air ionization and can provide eight selectable scents passengers can choose from.
A ten-speaker sound system is also included, but on demand, BMW will gladly offer the Bowers & Wilkins Diamond Surround Sound System featuring 20 speakers and a 1,500-watt amplifier.
On the mechanical side, the BMW X7 M50d receives an M Sport diff, while the BMW X7 xDrive50i can be had with the Off-Road pack which adds special graphics in the instrument cluster and protective elements underneath the car, as well as four new modes – xSnow, xSand, xGravel, and xRocks.
Also standard is the two-axle air suspension with auto self-leveling capabilities. When Sport mode is engaged, it automatically lowers the car by 20 mm at speeds of over 138 km/h (86 mph). For off-roading, the same setup can increase the ground clearance by as much as 40 mm with the press of a button.
Last but not least, customers can fit the new X7 with rear steering via BMW’s Integral Active Steering setup.