Home / Home / BMW X7 xDrive30d Road Test Review – Top of the World


It takes a very special something to claim an accolade as one of the best premium luxury offerings and the BMW X7 is right up there. We take the X7 xDrive30d to the test to see how well it behaves.

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

Story: Jim Gorde
Photography: Saurabh Botre

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

The top of the world, figuratively, of course — not until one can drive up Mount Everest — is a realm inhabited by quite a few big names. However, not all of them are equipped to take it all on. And fewer still can claim to have a seven-figure price tag to start with. That considered, the BMW X7 is one standout car and in pretty much every respect.

It’s huge. That’s clear. It’s the proper X version of the 7 Series, but, unlike the saloon, it actually seats seven and in fabulous comfort. But more on that later. Back to its size. The BMW X7 features the huge kidney-grille set that still has divided opinions by those who prioritize style over performance. However, in many of those cases, it does grow on one and the fact that the X7 is well over five metres long and two metres wide helps its case. We drove the same X7 last year, along with the other magnificent 7, for our 14th anniversary special, but this time it’s a bit different. We’re going to chuck it around a bit and see how it fares in our road — and a little off-road — test.

On the Road

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

The BMW X7 beggars belief with its handling, performance, and overall poise. It’s planted, agile, and nary feels bulky, save for a few situations where physics cannot be defied any further. For instance, unplanned evasive manoeuvres out of the blue. Lest we forget, there’s a 3.0-litre straight-six turbo-diesel under that long, and considerably high, bonnet. It makes all of 265 hp and a former-atmospheric-V8-equalling 620 Nm of torque. That’s significant and it shows, especially in the way it builds up before peaking from 2,000 rpm.

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

If there’s one area where BMW have shown true mastery over the past couple of years, it’s in the calibration of the drive modes. Even since I drove the 530d (same engine and an absolute blast), the X5 and, although beyond compare, the M5, one thing was clear: the drive modes completely change the car! Eco Pro and Comfort are both plush, soft, quiet, even relaxed — a nod, perhaps, to its Cluster Architecture and Rolls-Royce underpinnings. Adaptive uses the onboard computer to assess what’s needed most based on the driving style, speed, pedal input, and so on, keeping things as comfortable or as lively as possible. Sport, on the other hand, is a different matter altogether. The eight-speed ZF automatic keeps the revs on a very tight leash and the response is always immediate. It’s so well-calibrated and the acceleration and roll-on figures in our test show just that. While many may say it’s a small engine for a 2.4-tonne luxury 4×4, I can’t think of too many examples — and not just large cars — where 0-100 km/h is dismissed in less than seven seconds! The best part is it’s composed and absolutely luxurious no matter where it is or what it’s doing. It can handle curves and demolish distances, getting up to a claimed 227 km/h.

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

Even at speed, there isn’t a toll on efficiency in the BMW X7, with the active kidney-grille air-intakes opening to ensure optimum air circulation and then shutting when not needed to reduce drag and improve the aero just a tiny bit. The active suspension also lowers by up to 40 millimetres from its standard height. The result is a stellar city figure, but an even more commendable 14 km/l on the highway — yes, testament to how well Eco Pro mode manages the EfficientDynamics aspect. BMW’s EfficientDynamics set-up has certainly come a long way. Guided by BMW EfficientLightweight, on the X7, it includes Brake Energy Regeneration with recuperation display, automatic start/stop, and an Eco Pro mode with a coasting function. Those, apart from optimized aero, on-demand ancillaries including a map-regulated oil pump, and the efficiency- and weight-optimized all-wheel drive, differential and transfer case, among many others, all contribute to savings. BMW’s Blue Performance technology with SCR (selective catalytic reduction) negates emissions of oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and cleans up the diesel exhaust stream significantly. On the move, it’s silent, unperturbed and there is barely a whisper of engine, tyre or road noise in the cabin. It soaks up bumps well and ensures a cosseting ride for everyone on board ― in all three rows.

BMW X7 xDrive30d road test review

BMW X7 xDrive30d Road test review

Powered split-tailgate and third-row mean immense comfort and versatility

More on page 2 >


About the author: Jim Gorde


Deputy Editor at Car India and Bike India.
Believes that learning never stops, and that diesel plug-in hybrids are the only feasible immediate future until hydrogen FCEVs take over.

t: @CarIndia/@BikeIndia
IG: @carindia_mag/@bikeindia/@jimbosez


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  1. Pingback: BMW X7 M50d Now Flexes its Quads in India - Car India

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