As BMW continues to test its next SUV in anticipation of a launch later this year, our spy photographers have one again gotten up close and personal with it. The BMW X7 spotted here looks similar to others we’ve spied, though this time we also have a chance to look inside.
The BMW X7 prototype’s cabin recalls the look of new models like the X3, 5 Series, and 7 Series. Note the sleek steering wheel with abundant buttons, digital instrument cluster, assorted piano-black controls on the center console, and BMW’s requisite iDrive infotainment controller knob. The center-stack layout is about what we’d expect, too: display perched at the top, tablet-style, with tidy rows of climate and radio controls lower down.
From the outside, however, this X7 prototype looks just like all the other ones we’ve spied – and like the pre-production models that BMW itself showed off when preparations began at the plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina. It’s noticeably longer than an X5, with a practical flat roof, giant kidney grilles up front, smart LED taillights, and parallelogram-shaped exhausts peeking out from the lower rear fascia. All told, it looks like the BMW X7 will hew pretty close in terms of design to the Concept X7 iPerformance show car.
We expect that the BMW X7 will ride on a version of the CLAR modular platform also used for the 7 Series and 5 Series. As to powertrains, expect BMW to offer both six- and eight-cylinder units with turbocharging – possibly mirroring the 7 Series engine lineup – with a plug-in hybrid model likely.
The BMW X7 is designed to take on other three-row luxury models like the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class and Audi Q7. BMW has said that the new SUV will be introduced this year – likely in November – as production begins in Spartanburg. For now, you can get a pretty good idea of how the BMW X7 will look by checking out all the spy photos in our full gallery.