The BMW X7 previewed with a concept in the Frankfurt Motor show this September
BMW’s seven-seat Mercedes GLS and Range Rover rival will sit at the top of its model range alongside the 7 Series. An early vision for the production car will be demonstrated to the public in Frankfurt alongside the i3S, 6 Series GT and next X3.
The X7 has been spotted testing several times in the past few months, offering glimpses of the future SUV’s design and scale. It will be the largest SUV yet produced by BMW and adopts a typical SUV body shape with a boxy passenger cabin and flat-faced front end.
Beneath the camouflage will be familiar BMW design features, such as halo daytime running lights and kidney grilles.
The seven-seat BMW X7 is being developed with the US and Chinese markets in mind but was confirmed for the UK market by BMW head of sales and marketing, Ian Robertson, last year.
Message of Ian Robertson
Ian Robertson Said We will have some versions that are top-end luxury, as well as more mainstream versions. I can’t talk about pricing now, but given that this car will have all the technology and luxury of the 7 Series, it gives you a pretty good idea of the price point we’re talking about.
Previously, it was thought the X7 would be built on an extended version of the X5’s underpinnings, but Robertson said many parts are actually bespoke. “If you put both cars next to each other, the resemblance is small in terms of wheelbase etc. We’re not going to just extend the wheelbase, it’s a complete new panel cell.”
It is too soon for BMW to confirm which engines will go into the X7, but sources have previously speculated that it will feature a selection of six and eight-cylinder engines, such as the 3.0-litre diesel in 30d, 40d and 50d guises and the twin-turbo 4.4-litre petrol V8 from the X6 xDrive50i.
Robertson also hinted that the X7 would use engines from a wide range of BMW models, rather than just the X5 and X6. A hybrid model will almost certainly be offered, because BMW “sold more hybrids to the UK in the first two months of 2016 than in all of 2015 put together”.
Strategy of Company
The BMW X7 will be built at the company’s plant at Spartanburg in the US. It will have three rows of seats, making it a rival for the Cadillac Escalade and the Lincoln Navigator in that country and China.
The X7 has been under development since late 2015. The first sightings were of a chassis mule based on a 7 Series. The car, spotted testing in Scandanavia (and shown further back in the gallery), wore weights on its roof to replicate the higher centre of gravity of the future SUV.