No replacement for displacement, it seems.
BMW may still be trialling its new SUV flagship, but the X7 has already been given a due date and a location for its debut: Frankfurt, in September. When it arrives, the X7 will be bringing the game onto cars like the Range Rover, Bentley Bentayga, and Mercedes-Benz GLS, and aims to provide 7-Series limousine luxury with (a touch) of off-road capability (that no one will ever use).
According to Autocar, the X7 is set to debut with a naturally-aspirated motor rather than a hybrid or turbocharged mill, which we find rather odd. For starters, the X7 was previewed as an X7 iPerformance concept, which naturally had a plug-in hybrid drivetrain under the skin. Secondly, the X7 was teased in December, with BMW showing us shots of the production prototypes rolling off the line in Spartanburg in South Carolina replete with a plug-in slot on the front left fender.
So what gives?
Regardless, there’s no denying that this enormous luxury SUV is aimed at the markets that love it, namely the US, China, and probably Russia. Going the NA route will undoubtedly endear the X7 to the American and Russian markets, but where there are heinous taxes to be paid for large motors, China might not be so happy. Fret not though, because BMW’s extensive catalogue of turbocharged petrol and diesel mills are expected to arrive in time, along with a proper plug-in hybrid variant, after the production X7 debuts this November at the LA Motor Show.
The teasers from Spartanburg have offered the clearest glimpse at the X7’s styling yet. It’s pretty clear that while it’ll be toned down during the transition from concept to production, a lot of the Concept X7 iPerformance’s remarkable features like the flat fascia, wide head- and taillights, and gynormous nostrils will be retained. Expect to find the same technological features and solutions from the BMW 7-Series, which the X7 aims to complement.