The BMW X7 – Bavaria’s biggest, boldest and best-selling SUV – is due for an update after five years on the market. For 2023, BMW designers have tweaked the X7, giving it a sportier front end, minor rear updates, extra power in the base model and a revamped cabin with the latest technology and more efficient indoors.
Bold new look
Speaking of the face first, BMW has split its traditional headlight fixture into two for 2023. This dual-light setup will be the new staple for full-size BMW models, eventually making its way to the i7 electric sedans and 7 Series, as well as the XM Hybrid Crossover.
On the X7, the LED running lights sit high near the hood line while the actual headlights live lower on the bumper. The purpose of this look, BMW says, is to emphasize the X7’s upright stance. Beyond that, the lower fascia of the xDrive40i model sports a new shiny silver trim that protrudes from the base of the bumper, while the updated grille sports dark slats in a brighter chrome surround. And new for 2023: a Cascade Lighting element in the grille itself, à la Rolls-Royce.
The sportier X7 M60i forgoes the chrome for a gloss black treatment instead. The grille and lower vents wear the monotone black, while the headlight fixtures have a dark sheen that gives them a more aggressive look. And as expected, an M badge lives on the left side of the grille.
To accompany this bold new style, BMW has added 14 colors to the palette. Sparkling Copper Gray metallic – shown here on the xDrive40i model – is one of these new colours, joined by M Marina Bay Blue metallic as shown on the M60i, along with other BMW Individual finishes such as Ametrin, Dravit Grey, Tanzanite Blue II and Frozen Pure Gray also available.
Buyers can also opt for their X7 with a 50-year-old BMW M emblem, which looks like this. And for the first time on a BMW product, 23-inch wheels are available. The base xDrive40i model uses standard 21-inch wheels, the M60i rolls on 22-inch alloys and 23-inch BMW Individual light-alloy wheels are also available on the top model.
More base power
The 2023 X7 still offers the same two displacements as last year: a base 3.0-liter inline-six and an optional 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8. But now both motors get 48-volt mild-hybrid assist. The base straight-six has been significantly upgraded with a 40 horsepower boost and an additional 52 pound-feet of torque. That gives it a total output of 375 hp and 383 lb-ft. With that, the X7 xDrive40i can now hit 60 miles per hour in 5.6 seconds.
The twin-turbo V8 still has the same robust 523 hp and 553 lb-ft as last year, enough to rocket the M60i model to 60 in 4.5 seconds. And at the top of the range, the Alpina XB7, with its modified twin-turbo V8, produces 630 hp and 590 lb-ft, launching it to 60 in 4.0 seconds and a limited top speed of 180 miles per hour. Each version of the X7 for 2023 also includes a new eight-speed automatic transmission with a launch control feature.
Integral active steering and active roll stabilization are now standard on the X7 M60i model. Optional on the xDrive40i model as part of the Dynamic Handling package, Integral Active Steering is a variable-ratio rack and pinion that helps increase responsiveness at higher speeds and allows for greater maneuverability in tight situations.
8 is awesome
Inside the new X7 is BMW’s latest iDrive 8 infotainment system. Consisting of a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 14.9-inch touchscreen, both hidden behind a handsome curved display, iDrive 8 makes its way to a gasoline-powered BMW for the first time. Until now, iDrive 8 was only available on the electric iX and i4.
The iDrive 8 interface is a whole new system compared to the outgoing 7, with a sleeker interface, a more streamlined home screen, and additional features. Things like voice and gesture control, meanwhile, are inherited from the previous model.
Multicontour seats are now standard on the X7, with standard heating functionality for the driver and front passenger. Previously, both of these were options. Both massage and ventilation functions can be added as options, and BMW’s Sensafin vegan leatherette is standard in the xDrive40i model. The M60i gets standard Extended Merino leather, which is also available as an option on the base model.
The 2023 X7 xDrive40i starts at $78,845 with destination charges of $995 included, which is a slight increase over last year of around $2,000. The more powerful X7 M60i, meanwhile, costs $104,095 for the new year.