2022 BMW X7’s new split headlights might be even more divisive than the kidney grille



BMW has just lifted the veils on the new 2022 X7 facelift, and even though we’ve already seen it in full thanks to an earlier leak, it’ll probably still be a little while until we’re used to this new look – tough luck, because this will be the new corporate face for BMW’s luxury models, including the upcoming i7 and 7-Series.

The main identifying feature of the new front fascia is, of course, the new split headlights. The slim top sections, which have been pushed up to meet the bonnet shut lines, houses the LED daytime running lights (which also doubles as turn indicators).

Meanwhile, the actual low and high beams are located in a darkened and recessed housing on the bumper that’s integrated into the side air curtain intakes, the idea being that they’re somewhat hidden from view until the headlights are turned on.

BMW says that the new headlights design is meant to emphasise the car’s “upright stance and reinforce its road presence”, just like its enlarged kidney grille we all made fun of when the X7 was first unveiled – hey look, you’ve forgotten about them already, haven’t you?

Speaking of the grille, it’s not grown any larger this time round, but now features an updated two-tone design with darkened slats and brighter chrome surrounds. The grille also now gets a new Iconic Glow soft lighting effect, similar to that of the Rolls-Royce Ghost – the illuminated grille is standard on the M60i variant, but can be optioned on the X7 xDrive40i.

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Other exterior updates include a new triangular trim piece on the front bumper bookending the lower intakes, alongside a new set of taillights with 3D graphics on the side, linked across the entire tailgate by a slim chrome strip. For the first time ever, BMW will also be offering massive 23-inch alloy wheels straight from the factory, as optional items on the X7.

The 2022 BMW X7 will also be offered with an optional M Sport package, which equips the X7 with M-specific front and rear bumpers, side skirts, dark trapezoidal tailpipes, and double-spoke two-toned 21-inch wheels. For even more sportiness, the M60i variant ditches most chrome elements for gloss black, while adding the aerodynamic M wing mirrors, bigger air intakes, M-badged grille, quad tailpipes, and 22-inch wheels.

Buyers of the M60i can also option the BMW M 50 Years emblems on the bonnet, tailgate, and wheel centre caps, which looks something like this.

Aside from the front fascia, the next biggest change on the new 2022 BMW X7 is actually on the inside. Sitting atop the dashboard is now the marque’s latest iDrive 8 infotainment system, made up of a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 14.9-inch touchscreen in a single pane of curved glass.

The addition of the iDrive 8 on the BMW X7 marks the first time the system is featured in a ICE-powered BMW – it was previously only available in fully-electric models such as the iX and i4 – not even the iX3.

Other updates inside a cabin include a new tiny toggle gear selector lever, replacing the glass-topped joystick, while the multi-contour seats are now standard on the X7, topped with the vegan Sensafin faux leather in the standard xDrive40i variant, and Merino leather on the M60i.

RELATED: BMW’s all-new iDrive system wants you to forget about physical controls

Just as before, the new 2022 BMW X7 can be configured with either six or seven seats, the former featuring two individual seats on the second row. But no matter which seating configuration you choose, you’ll be happy to know that there’ll be enough firepower to haul all your passengers, thanks to the newly updated engines.

The base xDrive40i’s 3.0-litre inline-six turbocharged engine gets a healthy 40 hp boost to now make 380 hp, while torque is also increased significantly to 519 Nm, and can even go as high as 540 Nm momentarily when the now-standard 48V mild-hybrid technology kicks in to help out.

Paired to the ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic gearbox and the standard xDrive all-wheel drive system, the xDrive40i can reach 100 km/h from a standstill in just 5.8 seconds, onward to a top speed of 250 km/h.

Going one step up to the M60i, and you’ll get an updated 4.4-litre turbocharged V8, now also paired to a 48V mild-hybrid system. Power output, curiously, is unchanged from the older M50i it replaces at 530 hp and 750 Nm, as is the century sprint time of 4.7 seconds.

Why? Well, perhaps because there’ll also be an even more performant model coming soon, courtesy of the now-BMW-owned Alpina sub brand. Dubbed the XB7, the range-topping variant boosts the output of the 4.4-litre V8 up to 639 hp (from 621 hp), while torque remains unchanged at 800 Nm. 0-100 km/h takes 4.2 seconds, and top speed is raised up to 290 km/h.

As for the oil-burners, the xDrive40d also now gets a 48V mild-hybrid system, and when paired to the 3.0-litre straight-six turbodiesel, power output is rated at 340 hp and 700 Nm (temporarily up to 720 Nm with mild-hybrid boost).

Aside from engine updates, the X7 now comes as standard with adaptive two-axle air suspensions across all variants. Rear wheel steering and active roll stabilisation are included as standard on the M60i, but can also be optioned in the lower variants.

Safety kit has also been upgraded across the board, especially on the advanced driver assist systems, including added detection zones for oncoming traffic for the front-collision warning system, as well as a new front cross-traffic warning to reduce risk of collisions at junctions.

The new BMW X7 will be produced at the company’s Spartanburg plant in the US, with worldwide market launch planned from August this year. Closer to home, the pre-LCI BMW X7 is available here in Malaysia as a locally-assembled (CKD) model, in a sole xDrive40i Design Pure Excellence trim.


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