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2020 BMW X7 Performance Review


Performance: 7.8

The 2020 BMW X7 offers good performance for a vehicle of its size. It rides comfortably on rough roads and remains composed around turns. The X7 has three powerful engine options, a smooth-shifting transmission, and impressive fuel economy with its base powertrain.

  • "The base six-cylinder turbo engine provides abundant power, while the eight-speed automatic goes about its business without fuss. Frankly, BMW could have only offered the base engine, and it's hard to imagine anyone complaining. Yet, there is a bigger engine available, and in our brief drive, we found the V8-powered xDrive50i delivers the extra whack of overkill its potential buyers would be expecting." -- Autoblog
  • "With a bump-soaking air suspension system, lively steering and pedals that are easy to modulate, it's easy to dig the X7. It's still plenty great on the highway, too, floating along and providing a plush ride with plenty of on-tap power for lane changes. It's surprisingly fun to drive, and it feels in line with BMW's efforts of late to deliver comfortable cars that still err on the dynamic side." -- CNET (2019)
  • "The xDrive50i accelerates effortlessly and is accompanied by a subtle V8 growl. BMW estimates it will reach 60 mph in 5.2 seconds. The xDrive40i trails by only 0.6 second. Gear changes are quick and smooth regardless of engine, and there's an abundance of grip on wet pavement. " -- Edmunds (2019)

Acceleration and Power

The BMW X7 is available with three engine options. An eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard no matter which engine you choose.

The X7 xDrive40i has a 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder with 335 horsepower and 330 pound-feet of torque. This engine provides more than enough muscle for everyday driving, and it pairs nicely with BMW’s eight-speed automatic, which delivers smooth and well-timed gear changes. Fuel economy is another highlight of this powertrain. The xDrive40i is rated at 20 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway, figures no gasoline-powered model in this segment can match.

The X7 xDrive50i has a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 with 456 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. The X7 M50i has a retuned version of this V8 that makes 523 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque. Both engines give the X7 stronger acceleration and more passing power, but at the cost of fuel economy. Both of these models are rated at 15 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway.

  • "In the xDrive40i the six was smooth, quiet and refined. And engine noise from the V8 was a highlight. Throaty, athletic, muscular even, but also refined and muted. … Rounding out the powertrain, the eight-speed automatic went unnoticed, which is pretty much the highest possible praise. Shifts were quick, seamless and smooth, whether or not you command them from the shift paddles behind the wheel." -- Autoweek (2019)
  • "The 6-cylinder X7 has a bit less power and torque than the xDrive50i, it’s about $20,000 less expensive and feels totally acceptable in everyday use. The 335-horsepower inline-6 is smooth, and the twin-scroll turbocharger provides plenty of linear power with no hint of lag, which is much appreciated in a vehicle with a substantial curb weight of 5,370 pounds." -- Kelley Blue Book (2019)
  • "The V8 is glorious overkill. A 5.2-second sprint to 60 miles per hour may not seem all that sprightly, but when you’re pushing a vehicle of this size at that rate, it feels quick. … No matter the engine, the standard eight-speed automatic transmission barely makes its existence known to me, swapping cogs effortlessly in the background and taking little time to call up lower gears when it’s time to put the hammer down on the on-ramp." -- CNET (2019)

Handling and Braking

The BMW X7 has a smooth and comfortable ride, thanks to its standard two-axle air suspension. It remains stable around turns and its driving dynamics are on par with class rivals. However, its steering feels rather numb compared to the other SUVs in the BMW lineup.

  • "With its tremendous size, height-adjustable air suspension, and subtle pitching when turning, the X7 xDrive models feel more like a Range Rover than BMWs of the past. In many ways, this is a good thing as Range Rovers are lovely to drive … However, if you're expecting taut handling and tactile steering, this is not the vehicle for you. Instead, expect truly supple ride quality and composed handling that allows for a rapid-enough pace on a mountain road." -- Autoblog
  • "The X7 never feels unstable or out of sorts; it simply takes a moment to set itself right. There is a real Bimmer hiding underneath, though, once you activate Sport mode via a center-console-mounted button." -- Automobile Magazine (2019)
  • When things get twisty, the X7 is competent. Easy enough to position on the road with precision, but even in sport mode, body roll was noticeable. In a sedan, you’d call it excessive, but in a six-foot-tall, 203-inch-long SUV, you don’t." -- Autoweek (2019)
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2020 BMW X7

MSRP: $73,900 - $99,600

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