BMW has started that it will produce a flagship SUV called the X7 to be ready by 2018. They are so sure that it will be a success that they will be making $1bn worth of improvements to their factory so that they can cope with increase in demand.
The new X7 will be built in South Carolina, USA at the Spartanburg plant with the X3, X4, X5 and X6. The plant produces 300,000 cars a year at the moment but it will go up by 50% in the next two years. This is because BMW’s are very popular in the emerging markets of China and Russia and they now want to compete with Range Rover and Mercedes GL.
The platform for the X7 will be the same one that is used for the X5 and the new X6 although the wheelbase will be stretched. There will be engines with six and eight cylinders and there will be 400bhp X7 45i and 500bhp X7 55i. There will be a diesel alternative for European buyers as they would take a lot of petrol and so there will be a quad-turbocharged version of the triple turbo straight six. This will be able to perform at 400bhp and have 590 lb/ft of torque.
To help with fuel consumption there will be nine speed gearboxes and cylinder deactivation. It is also being said that there will be bespoke suspension as well as 21inch wheels which will make it look much more grand than the X3’s and X5’s that it will be competing with.
The Rolls Royce SUV may be getting the X7 platform and this will come out before the BMW uses it on the X7. This is expected because the Rolls Royce Ghost uses the BMW series 7 architecture. However, this Rolls Royce will not use the power from a BMW but have the V12 6.75 litre engine from the Phantom and possibly a hybrid option.
The car will also have carbon fibre so that it is not so heavy, which could come as a surprise to many people.