U.S. sales of large, premium SUVs increased 6.1 per cent last year and have risen another 3.3 per cent this year through August, while the overall market has cooled. The segment is dominated by the Mercedes GLS, Cadillac Escalade and Escalade ESV, Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, Infiniti QX80 and Lincoln Navigator.
The X7 is expected to come in six-cylinder and eight-cylinder versions. There has been speculation about a possible 12-cylinder performance version.
For the Concept X7, few details are given about the powertrain other than to say it is a plug-in hybrid featuring a BMW TwinPower turbocharged gasoline engine. It can run with zero local emissions, BMW said.
The concept also features a front end with an extra-tall vertical kidney grille. It "hogs the attention," BMW says of the new grille design.
The production X7 will play a key role in expanding BMW's sales and revenue in the luxury segment, Ian Robertson, BMW board member responsible for sales and the BMW brand, said in a statement.