News of the 2018 BMW X7 SUV isn’t exactly new, but BMW is now spilling more of the beans on the model it just couldn’t keep a secret. BMW now says there will be two of them. One is the already announced seven-seater and the second is a $100,000-plus four-seater ultra-luxurious model.
According to Automotive News, BMW’s Sales Chief, Ian Robertson says the range-topping X7 will be styled differently from the X5 (shown above), which is currently BMW’s largest crossover. The X7s go on sale in 2018 and will be built in South Carolina.
The ultra-luxury X7 is part of BMW’s plans when it comes to “Grand Klasse” models, which are basically BMW’s answer to the Mercedes-Benz Maybach sub-brand. However, Robertson stops short of calling the X7 BMW’s answer to the new Mercedes-Benz GL SUV destined for Maybach. Judging by his comments to Automotive News, Robertson says it’s not necessary because BMW has Rolls-Royce for that.
“Of course the quintessential luxury is still the [BMW-owned] Rolls-Royce — we do not need a Maybach,” said Robertson noted.
Speaking of which, a new Rolls-Royce crossover is due out in 2018. It’s dubbed the Cullinan by insiders and will reportedly use an aluminum spaceframe construction. While BMW’s flagship sedan, the 7 Series, shares its platform with a Rolls-Royce model, the X7 won’t share its platform with the new Rolls SUV. The X7 will be monocoque.
Roberston also says more GKL models are also in the works, but he wouldn’t confirm the rumored 9 series. However, he says another model “is well under way, we will see it in the not too distant future. This is not something we dreamt up last week,” Robertson said.
This next piece of news is aimed at the other end of the market. According to Robertson, BMW has plans for an all-new compact crossover designed for the U.S. market. Automotive News reports the vehicle is expected to be the X2, the coupe version of the X1. The X2 will have styling similar to that of the larger X4 and X6. It’s expected to hit the road in 2017.
It’s not surprising that BMW is putting its emphasis on crossovers and SUVs. BMW crossovers are selling extremely well in the states. The company says they’ll account for 40 percent of BMW’s total U.S. sales this year. That is up from 30 percent last year.