The BMW X7 comes with a choice of two engines. The xDrive40i is powered by a 3.0L inline 6-cylinder engine fed by a turbocharger, sending power to all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic. BMW claims the X7 xDrive40i makes 335 horsepower, which is enough get the vehicle up to 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds, so despite not having overwhelming amounts of horsepower on paper, the xDrive40i is pretty quick. For those wanting more power, the xDrive50i is powered by a 4.4L twin-turbocharged V8 making 456 horsepower. Acceleration with the xDrive50i is blisteringly quick for an SUV.
Regardless of which engine is ordered, the X7 comes in two basic flavors dubbed Luxury and M Sport. From the outside, the two trim levels couldn't be more different, the Luxury features plenty of exterior brushed aluminum around the windows and the lower door sills, while the M sport features more aggressive wheels, blacked out aluminum and bigger grill openings in the front fascia.
Regardless of trim level, the X7 is generous with its standard features, which include 21-inch wheels, adaptive LED headlights and LED fog lights. Inside, the X7 comes standard with 16-way power front seats, a 10-speaker sound system with HD radio and SiriusXM satellite radio, a leather wrapped multifunction steering wheel, BMW ConnectedDrive services, dynamic cruise control, a panoramic moonroof featuring a 2-piece glass panel, 4-zone automatic climate control, rain sensing wipers, a power tailgate, park distance control, BMW's extended ambient lighting system and three stage heated front seats.
Options are plentiful on the X7 and include a variety of 21 and 22-inch wheel designs, a variety of Vernasca Leather and merino leather upholstered interiors, five different types of wood trimmed dashboards and of course several packages.
A Dynamic Handling Package will up the sportiness on the X7 by adding integrated active steering, M Sport brakes and a suspension system that will use cameras to view the road ahead and preemptively adjust suspension stiffness on the fly for improved handling. An Off-Road Package adds upgraded differentials, several off-road driving modes and underbody armor. A Premium Package offers heated and cooled cupholders, a heads-up display, a remote engine starting system, self-closing automatic doors, rear wind shades, a 360-watt Harman/Kardon sound system and gesture controls for the infotainment system.
Last May, I received an early preview of BMW's brand-spanking-new flagship SUV, the 2019 X7. At the time, I praised the three-row crossover's dual personalities as I spent the better part of two days tackling sinewy roads and rocky trails in and around BMW's US home in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The prototype drive left me with lofty expectations: The X7 offered a plush ride, yet it could dial in the right amount of sportiness with just a few button presses.
Still, that early prototype test left me with a lot of questions, mostly concerning overall interior comfort and general ease of use. Following a second, more thorough go-'round of a production model, I'm happy to report the X7 is still a lovely driver. But in other areas, there's many a compromise to be had.
Having just finished driving a 2019 X5, the X7's interior unsurprisingly feels very familiar. The dashboard is just about the same, with a pair of standard 12.3-inch screens laying low to maintain forward visibility. However, the area for driver and passenger has the same problem as the X5: There's not a lot of space to put stuff. The center armrest cubby isn't particularly deep, nor are the pockets in the doors. While I appreciate the wireless charging dock in the center console's forward storage area, putting anything in the cupholders makes reaching your device almost impossible.
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