One thing’s for sure, you’re never going to lose your BMW X7 in the car park. Almost the size of a minibus, it towers above most other cars like a basketball player at school sports day. It’s so imposing that the shyer among us might be a little embarrassed squeezing it into a parking space.
Its “in your face” styling is evident everywhere from the classic BMW grille that is genuinely huge, to the panoramic sun roof that floods the interior with light.
Other than it’s tank-like dimensions, it looks pretty smart and sleek. The headlights are narrow, and you’ll probably have the biggest wheels in town, quite literally. You’re most likely to find a used BMW X7 with Black paint but they’re also available in Grey, Blue or White.
One thing’s for sure, you’re never going to lose your BMW X7 in the car park.
What’s it like to drive?
BMW have managed to pull off a very special type of magic trick with the X7. It may be a heavyweight in every single respect but it’s unbelievably light and responsive to drive.
You might not go as far as to call it sporty – though we consider it a Muhammed Ali of a car - floating like a butterfly. Its great bulk combined with finely-tuned air suspension means that even the worst road surfaces barely make it miss a beat and the automatic gearbox is so smooth that gear changes go almost unnoticed.
It may be a heavyweight in every single respect but it’s unbelievably light and responsive to drive.
Sitting in the X7 feels like travelling in first class – probably because you are. All around you are the finest materials and leather seats come as standard. Some X7s even have a cut-glass gear lever and you really can’t get much more luxurious than that.
The driving position is just as perfect as we’ve come to expect from BMW and the driver’s seat is not just electrically adjusted, it can also memorise a number of different settings. The huge areas of glass all round make visibility excellent, although the car is so large that the many cameras and parking sensors are invaluable for anyone not wanting to create a very expensive dent by hitting a bollard that’s too low down to see.
The X7 comes with either 6 or 7 seats. In the former version, the middle row has a couple of captain’s-style seats complete with full adjustment and even their own cup holders. There’s even enough room between them to get through to the back 2 seats.
In the 7-seat version it can be quite a squeeze getting to them through the back door. Once installed you’ll be very comfortable indeed.
In terms of tech, there’s everything and more that you’d expect from a 7-series BMW. The only one shortcoming is that the infotainment system is not compatible with Android Auto, although it is with Apple CarPlay.
Guess what? There is a simply huge amount of space in the X7, even with all 7 seats in use. There’s going to be no worries about getting everyone’s luggage on board when you head off on holiday.
The tailgate is split in 2 for extra convenience. Another very handy feature is that the air suspension can drop the rear of the car by 40mm if needed for even easier loading. With all the seats folded down, which they do flat, the space is positively van-like and ready for some serious furniture moving.
Inside the car itself, there are plenty of cubby holes and corners to store all those travel essentials that you just can’t leave home without, like your driving glasses or your chewing gum.
Running costs and reliability
Considering that the engine has to shift 2.5 tonnes of metal, plus occupants, it’s never going to be a cheap car to run. You won’t be too surprised to discover that the most economical diesel engine will only manage an average of 36.2 mpg with the petrol version delivering just 25.7 mpg.
What cinch loves
Big, if not exactly beautiful, the BMX X7 is a great choice of king, or queen, size SUV. It’s absolutely jam-packed with features and tech and is a surprising pleasure to drive. You just need very deep pockets to own one.