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BMW designers continue to boldly go where few other automakers dare to venture. The controversial split headlight treatment makes its way onto the automaker’s biggest and boldest vehicles, the 2023 7 Series and the new-and-otherwise-improved 2023 BMW X7 SUV.
Contentious styling aside, the arrival of a new mild-hybrid inline-six engine improves power and efficiency for the base model while upgraded technology means the X7 finally feels up to date with the rest of the lineup. Add to that an excellent drive experience, and the X7 is still one of the best three-row SUVs out there – assuming you’re willing to deal with that face.
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|Quick Stats||2023 BMW X7 xDrive40i|
|Engine:||Turbocharged 3.0-Liter I6 w/Integrated Starter-Generator|
|Output:||375 Horsepower / 398 Pound-Feet|
|0-60 MPH:||5.6 Seconds|
|Efficiency:||21 City / 25 Highway / 22 Combined|
Gallery: 2023 BMW X7: Review
- Exterior Color: Sparkling Copper Metallic
- Interior Color: Ivory White
- Wheel Size: 23 Inches
The i7 and the X7 both look odd with split headlights, but I find the X7 especially off-putting. The once understated and elegant front end of this SUV now feels disjointed and messy. The lightly updated taillights are at least less offensive, while new running boards and available 23-inch wheels are a welcome update to the overall styling.
But a common theme here, as with many modern BMWs, is that you shouldn't judge a book by its ungainly cover. The X7 retains a few points for its lovely interior. The updates here are more meaningful; the new iDrive 8 screens look sleek atop the dash, the interior lighting with an “X7” logo on the passenger side is modern, and of course, the same high-end finishes found in last year's model all carry over.
save over $3,400 on average off MSRP* on a new BMW X7
- Seating Capacity: 7
- Seating Configuration: 2 / 2 / 3
- Cargo Capacity: 12.8 / 48.6 / 90.4 Cubic Feet
The BMW X7’s ride is straight-up cozy. The suspension floats over imperfections with excellent poise and not even the 23-inch wheels do much to upset it. The Ivory White leather seats fit the driver and front passenger like a well-tailored suit and offer excellent bolstering with ample butt and back support.
Heating and ventilation come standard in the front row and the $1,600 Climate Comfort package extends heating to the second-row captain's chairs. The $3,950 Executive package adds a massage function up front; it's a pretty weak massage compared to some others – but a massage is a massage. The Executive package also adds heated and cooled cupholders in the front compartment.
In terms of space, the X7 has lots of headroom, but it lacks legroom and offers middling cargo – especially behind the third row. The way back is tight to sit in, too, but not necessarily unusable for average adults. The X7 makes accessing the rearmost row a breeze with an automatic folding second row. And once seated, there's just enough headroom and legroom to keep you comfy on shorter journeys.
- Center Display: 14.9-Inch Touchscreen
- Instrument Cluster Display: 12.3 Inches
- Wireless Apple CarPlay or Android Auto: Yes/Yes
The arrival of iDrive 8 is a big upgrade to the X7 with the new 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 14.9-inch touchscreen affixed. Both screens feature crisp graphics and ample customization, while the center display has a home screen that's easy to parse with neatly arranged options. Most everything is quickly accessible while driving, apart from a few features that require digging into the touchscreen.
Every X7 comes with Wi-Fi connectivity and satellite radio, as well as a baked-in BMW smartphone app that allows you to control your vehicle remotely. The Executive package also adds the 12-speaker Harman Kardon system that delivers a crystal clear sound.
- Engine: Turbocharged 3.0-Liter I6 Mild-Hybrid
- Output: 375 Horsepower / 398 Pound-Feet
- Transmission: Eight-Speed Automatic
I’m a big fan of BMW’s twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine, but after driving the X7 with its reworked 3.0-liter inline-six with mild-hybrid assist, there’s not much reason to upgrade in my opinion (unless you really need that quicker time to 60: 4.5 versus 5.6 seconds).
The six-cylinder engine delivers enough power to get the X7 off the line and up to speed quickly, but it’s smoother and more linear than the hammer-like acceleration of the V8. The eight-speed automatic shifts quickly and imperceptibly.
The standard air suspension keeps the X7 composed while the upgraded Dynamic Handling package ($3,300) makes the three-row SUV feel genuinely agile. The steering is well-weighted and responsive, allowing you to flick the X7 into a corner with confidence.
- Driver Assistance Level: SAE Level 2 (Hands-On)
- NHTSA Rating: Not Rated
- IIHS Rating: Not Rated
The X7 has active safety equipment like automatic emergency braking and lane-centering, as well as the Active Driving Assistant Pro package, a $1,700 option. The X7 does not adopt BMW’s Level 2 hands-free safety system just yet. While this technology is still hands-on, it keeps the BMW centered in the lane and offers smooth braking and acceleration inputs on the highway.
- City: 21 MPG
- Highway: 25 MPG
- Combined: 22 MPG
|2023 BMW X7 xDrive40i||21 MPG||25 MPG||22 MPG|
|2023 Land Rover Range Rover L P400||18 MPG||26 MPG||21 MPG|
|2023 Mercedes-Benz GLS 450||18 MPG||23 MPG||20 MPG|
- Base Price: $77,850 + $995 Destination
- Trim Base Price: $78,845
- As-Tested Price: $97,195
In the realm of high-end three-rows, the BMW X7 is on the more affordable side of things starting at $78,845 for 2023 with destination included. The Mercedes-Benz GLS and Range Rover are both pricier to start. But once you start digging into options the X7 quickly gets pricey.
The X7 tested here costs $97,195 with options. The $3,950 Executive package with the massage seats, fancy cupholders, and upgraded audio system is worth the splurge. But the $3,300 Dynamic Handling package is only worth it if you live near a twisty road, and you can save $2,600 by going for smaller wheels. Expensive options aren’t uncommon in this class in general, but BMW is still the leader when it comes to pricey add-ons.
|Pricing:||Base Price w/Destination:||Competitive Spec:|
|2023 BMW X7 xDrive40i||$78,845||$97,195|
|2023 Land Rover Range Rover L P360 SE||$113,975||$122,125|
|2023 Mercedes-Benz GLS 450||$82,950||$97,660|
X7 Competitor Reviews:
2023 BMW xDrive40i