Big, luxurious, and expensive. The BMW X7 arrived in 2019 and made a statement. The automaker had arrived in the big, cushy, luxury SUV space with an exclamation point.
This posh vehicle offers everything a buyer could want and then some. Plus, it’s got insane performance in its range-topping model. But when you combine all this, there has to be a little give somewhere. In the 2021 BMW X7, its breaking point is its massive price tag that runs much higher than some competitors.
A luxury SUV’s luxury SUV, but it comes at a price. Slip into the X7, and there's no mistaking that this is a luxury SUV. It boasts everything you could ever want. And just when you think you’ve got the hang of everything it offers, you’ll find yet another feature.
This large people mover comes standard with remote start, synthetic leather upholstery, wood trim, heated and power-adjustable front seats, a heated steering wheel and armrests, a panoramic sunroof, a 12.3-inch touchscreen, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility, and much more.
The Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class matches most of the X7’s standard features, except the flash heated armrests. The Audi Q7 and Lincoln Aviator come up short with their 10.1-inch touchscreens and more mainstream cabins.
While this luxurious cabin is nice, the X7 comes at a premium, ranging from $75,895 to $142,295 including destination. The Q7 presents a better value at $56,045 to $86,095. The Aviator and GLS-Class are right up there with the X7, starting at $77,480 and $76,995, respectively.
Hauls all the cargo, but has surprisingly tight rear seating. The BMW X7 isn’t shy about hauling cargo with its massive 90.4 cubic feet of max space with both rear rows of seats folded. The Aviator, GLS, and Q7 all come up short with their maximum cargo space ringing in at 77.7, 69.6, and 84.7 cubic feet, respectively.
The X7 also beats most competitors with 48.6 cubic feet of space behind the second-row seats, which is 12.9 more than the Q7 and 5.9 more than the GLS. However, the X7 falls short with all three rows upright with just 12.8 cubic feet of space. That’s 5.5 short of the Aviator, 1.4 shy of the Q7, and 4.6 short of the GLS.
The X7’s other shortcomings are second- and third-row leg room. The second row offers only 37.6 inches of leg room, while the Aviator, Q7, and GLS offer 40.1 inches, 38.8 inches, and 41.9 inches, respectively. With 33.3 inches of third-row leg room, the X7 beats the Aviator and Q7 but loses to the GLS’ 34.6 inches.
Plenty of power options, but the range-topping Alpina is no value. The X7 has a range of power options to fit all types of buyers, starting with its more timid 3.0-liter turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine. This base motor pumps out 335 horsepower and sprints the X7 to 60 mph in 5.8 seconds. The X7 M50i trim adds a twin-turbo V8 with 523 hp for a 4.5-second 0-60 mph sprint time.
Buyers who want serious performance can opt for the Alpina XB7 and its 612-hp V8 that launches it to 60 mph in four seconds. That’s lightning quick, but is its $142,295 starting price really worth the added performance? With the Audi SQ7 boasting a 500-hp V8, a 4.3-second 0-60 time, and an MSRP that’s $56,200 less than the Alpina, we doubt it.
Final thoughts. The 2021 BMW X7 is precisely what we’d expect from the brand's range-topping SUV, with its focus on poshness and performance and little attention placed on price. This is an SUV for someone who orders what they want, not what they can afford. So, although it’s expensive, X7 shoppers will likely pay no mind to the bottom-line price and walk away happy.
For more price-conscious shoppers, the Audi Q7 is a good option, as it matches many of its features at a far lower MSRP. Buyers who need more roominess will likely prefer the Mercedes GLS-Class, as it beats the X7 handily in second- and third-row leg room.
Check prices for the 2021 BMW X7 »