BMW has been dropping plenty of big hints in recent months as it prepared to launch an all-new flagship. And now, we’re finally getting a look at the production version of the 2019 X7.
As the name might suggest, you can think of the big ute as the SUV counterpoint to the Bavarian brand’s traditional flagship, the 7-Series. And it reflects the massive shift in the global luxury market as highline buyers by the millions switch from sedans and coupes to SUVs and CUVs, mirroring what’s happened in mainstream segments.
The 2019 BMW X7 is more than just a stretched version of the familiar X5. It’s not only nine inches longer but loaded with the sort of luxury features you’d expect on a 7-Series – or the also-new 8-Series. It also introduces BMWs new voice assistant infotainment system which, like Amazon’s Alexa, is always listening for its wake words, “Hey, BMW.”
The new X7 measures a whopping 203.3 inches, nose-to-tail, or almost exactly the length of a Lincoln Navigator or Cadillac Escalade. It’s 78.7 inches wide and 71.1 inches tall, with a wheelbase of 122.2 inches. It can be ordered in either six- or seven-seat configuration.
(First look: BMW rolls out 7th-generation 3-Series in Paris. Click Here for the story.)
Visually, it has a much more solid and imposing appearance than the recently redesigned X5, with an upright grille that would almost seem to fit on a locomotive but for the largest-ever kidney grille ever used on a BMW. In sharp contrast as the almost slit-like LED headlamps. While BMW makes a point of saying the X7 is not a badge-engineered take on the Rolls-Royce Cullinan, the Bavarian ute has a similarly imposing presence.
From a side profile, the 2019 X7 avoids the coupe-like roofline that has become something of an industry cliché these days. Allowing for massive windows fore and aft – and for plenty of headroom for even third-row passengers. Better yet, the rear doors are actually larger than those up front, making for particularly easy access wherever you sit.
Like the new BMW X5, the 2019 X7 is designed to handle pretty much anything you’d throw at it, and while few owners likely will test its mettle in the extreme, it can handle some serious off-roading with up to 8.7 inches and standard two-axle air suspension that can be raised or lowered manually or automatically. A locking rear differential is an option, as well
Inside, the new ute features the sort of luxurious appointments you’d expect of a BMW flagship, but on a massive scale. Those back seats don’t qualify as a penalty box here. And, with an optional rear panoramic sunroof, occupants in all three rows will get plenty of sunlight. But the centerpiece will likely be the massive twin displays, a 12.3-inch virtual gauge cluster and an equal-sized infotainment screen.
BMW was a pioneer in the infotainment world with its original iDrive, and while it’s tweaked its technology over the years, the rotary controller remains. But the automaker has expanded the system’s capabilities with the addition of its new voice assistant technology – which arrives about the same time as the similar MBUX system being launched by Mercedes-Benz.
(Click Here to seem about BMW making all M models electric by 2030.)
The list of advanced technologies is a long one and would require several more pages to cover. But it includes a range of advanced driver assistance systems, ranging from blind spot detection to Extended Traffic Jam Assistant which allows semi-autonomous driving on limited access highways.
The cabin also features new Driving Experience Control switches that allow a motorist to switch between a variety of on- and off-road modes.
Despite weighing in anywhere from 5,370 to 5,670 pounds, BMW claims it will have a solid fuel economy rating when released by the EPA closer to the X7’s on-sale date. It has added a number of features meant to enhance mileage, including not just Auto Stop/Start but a coasting function that can decouple the ute’s powertrain under low-demand driving conditions.
Set to start at $74,895, the 2019 BMW X7 will be offered in two trims, the xDrive40i and, at $93,595 the xDrive50i. The engine choices are lifted out of the X5 catalogue. The “base” model will feature a 3.0-liter inline-six making 335 horsepower and 330 pound-feet of torque, enough to pull this massive mule from 0 to 60 in 5.8 seconds. The upgrade is a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8 making 456 hp and 479 pound-feet. The X7 xDrive50i can hit 60 in 5.2 seconds, according to BMW.
(BMW gives a major range boost to the 2019 i3 electric city car. Click Here to check it out.)
While deliveries are still more than a month away, BMW will be opening up the order bank for the 2019 X7 before the end of October.