The upcoming X7 large SUV was shown for the first time by BMW under a thin veil; BMW head of sales and marketing Ian Robertson confirms it will be sold in Britain

BMW has confirmed the X7 will be sold in the UK, as a rival to large luxury offerings from the likes of Mercedes and Land Rover.

Speaking to Autocar at the New York motor show, BMW head of sales and marketing Ian Robertson said that despite the car’s main markets being the US and China, “the X7 will definitely make it to the UK”.

“We will have some versions that are top-end luxury, as well as more mainstream versions,” he said. “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 that the X7 would be built on an extended version of the X5’s underpinnings, but Robertson says many parts are actually bespoke for the new car. “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.”

Robertson also suggested that the X7 would use engines from a wide range of BMW models, rather than just the X5 and X6. A hybrid model is almost certainly going to be offered too, because BMW “sold more hybrids to the UK in the first two months of 2016 than in all of 2015 put together."

The car maker teased its new X7 SUV in a recent annual press presentation, showing the car under a thin veil for the first time.

Previously, the only images we had of the car were of a test mule, so this is our first proper glimpse of the future model. The images reveal how much larger it could be than the rest of the car maker's SUV line-up.

The X7 was confirmed for production in 2014, and the underpinnings for it were first spotted undergoing cold-weather testing in Scandinavia last year. The mule was based on the 7 Series and featured extra weights on the bonnet and on the roof to replicate the greater weight and higher centre of gravity of the X7.

The X7 is set to be the biggest SUV yet produced by BMW. It will be built at the company's plant at Spartanburg in the US and is intended to take on the likes of the Mercedes-Benz GL and Range Rover.

In markets such as the US and China, where large SUVs of this size are more common, the X7 would also compete with the Cadillac Escalade and the Lincoln Navigator.

Although it is too soon for BMW to confirm which engines will go into the X7, it was thought that last year's test mule featured a high-powered engine and four-wheel drive. Our 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.

The X7 is not expected to go on sale until 2018, so it's unlikely that it'll be revealed before the end of this year.

Join the debate

Comments
14

16 February 2015

Like the Mercedes GL the X7 will be pointless as long as the Range Rover exists. Like the Merc the X7 won't be as capable on and off road, won't be as well built and won't feel as luxurious or have as stunning quality materials as the Range Rover. And then there's the desirability cache and class of the Range Rover, and the Land Rover brand in general, which BMW and Mercedes can only dream of.

16 February 2015

It's a wonder Mercedes are able to sell any GLs then.. Sales numbers do indicate more people buy Range Rovers but they are still comparable. As for desirability and class, it's a wonder these German upstarts are still in business. Probably something to do with the fact that up until about 10 years ago British cars were generally terrible, based on my experience of a Range Rover and two Jag XJs (both contemporary at the time, not sheds). I have to guess you are either trolling or some sort of weirdo that sleeps with Union Jack bedlinen. Mercedes and BMW both make fine cars and some people actively buy them over Range Rovers and Jaguars. In fact, most people with the means actually do just that.

16 February 2015
Saucerer wrote:

Like the Mercedes GL the X7 will be pointless as long as the Range Rover exists. Like the Merc the X7 won't be as capable on and off road, won't be as well built and won't feel as luxurious or have as stunning quality materials as the Range Rover. And then there's the desirability cache and class of the Range Rover, and the Land Rover brand in general, which BMW and Mercedes can only dream of.

Absolutely spot on. In fact, I'd go further. There is no point whatsoever in BMW and Merc producing ANY 4x4s or SUVs since JLR now have a full line line up.

Indeed, with Jaguar now producing 3, 5 and 7 series sized saloons, as well as sporty cars like the F-Type, BWM and Merc might as well forget about those sectors too.

So, for the time being BMW and Merc should only be allowed to build the Golf-sized 1-series and the A-class, but only until JLR decide to enter that sector too, after which the two hopeless (in the face of the superior JLR products) German makes should do the honourable thing and just exit car production altogether.

17 February 2015
Saucerer wrote:

Like the Mercedes GL the X7 will be pointless as long as the Range Rover exists. Like the Merc the X7 won't be as capable on and off road, won't be as well built and won't feel as luxurious or have as stunning quality materials as the Range Rover. And then there's the desirability cache and class of the Range Rover, and the Land Rover brand in general, which BMW and Mercedes can only dream of.

Saucerer is back in style. Why does anybody care to build cars if they are not JLR? Their products are so superiour that resistance is futile.

21 March 2016
Saucerer wrote:

Like the Mercedes GL the X7 will be pointless as long as the Range Rover exists. Like the Merc the X7 won't be as capable on and off road, won't be as well built and won't feel as luxurious or have as stunning quality materials as the Range Rover. And then there's the desirability cache and class of the Range Rover, and the Land Rover brand in general, which BMW and Mercedes can only dream of.

You do know that the Range Rover only has 5 seats in such a huge body? A lot of customers, me included, need 7 seats in a similar sized SUV as a Range Rover, with infotainment that is actually up to date. Not many take their new Range Rovers off road to outer Mongolia and the like. Most seem to glide around City Centres. As nice as the Range Rover is, it's not really that practical, not if you have kids.

23 March 2016
Saucerer wrote:

Like the Mercedes GL the X7 will be pointless as long as the Range Rover exists. Like the Merc the X7 won't be as capable on and off road, won't be as well built and won't feel as luxurious or have as stunning quality materials as the Range Rover. And then there's the desirability cache and class of the Range Rover, and the Land Rover brand in general, which BMW and Mercedes can only dream of.

Quality, RR? have you seen the panel alignment/gaps on a RR? f'kin comical.

16 February 2015

The X5 though also sold with 7-seat configuration was never up to the task of carrying 7 passengers - not even children - not even for short distances. The seats were proxy and the access was inadequate too. It is only logical for the BMW to offer the X7 that would be based on the 7-Series.

wmb

16 February 2015

As good as the GL is and X7 will be, I believe for the moment they will be the best at second and third place when compared to the all around performance of the Range Rover. BMW and Mercedies build some of the best luxury sport/sport luxury cars in the world, but Land Rover's occupattion (especially Range Rover) is building luxury 4x4's! That doesn't mean that Range Rover will not have a real fight on they're hands, for the heart of the luxury 4x4 owner! For that owner wants a LUXURY 4x4 that will go anywhere, whether they actually leave the pavement or not! And when Mercedies adds the S Classes interior appointments to the GL (and/or give it the Maybach treatment), Bentley introduces their SUV and BMW uses the X7 as the bones for their R&R SUV, I believe Range Rover will at they very least have to up their game on the luxury side of their go anywhere top offering.

16 February 2015

It's a camoflaged 7 series acting as a mule for X7 parts (not visible).

I know Autocar online is free but the headline is about the standard I expect from the Toytown Free advertiser.

...viewing the car world through cola-bottle lenses.

20 February 2015

This BMW proto type looks the 7series shape instead of a BMW 4 wheels drive shape.

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • 2016 Audi A3 Sportback e-tron UK review
    First Drive
    29 September 2016
    First UK drive finds the facelifted A3 Sportback e-tron remains a first-rate plug-in hybrid that is packed with tech if a little short on driver appeal
  • Citroen C11.2 Puretech 82 Furio
    First Drive
    29 September 2016
    Citroën's city car gets a new sporty-looking trim level, adding visual adornments, but no premium for the 1.2-litre Puretech triple we're driving
  • Mercedes C350e Sport
    First Drive
    28 September 2016
    Petrol-electric C-Class is a surprisingly well-priced alternative to a diesel but not the greatest example of the new ‘PHEV’ breed
  • Car review
    23 September 2016
    Aston kicks off its ‘second century plan’ with an all-new turbo V12 grand tourer
  • Ford Ka+ 1.2 Ti-VCT 85
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    A rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka