Prior to the debut of the original X5 in 1999, the idea of a BMW crossover might have seemed like heresy. But here we are, fifteen years removed from the Frank Stephenson-penned design, and the Bavarian automaker has expanded its crossover lineup to include the X1, X3, X4 and X6, and it's showing no sign of slowing down.

We recently reported that BMW is planning on slotting an X2 in at the bottom of the range between the X1 and X3, but now it's being widely reported that it's got an even larger one to put in at the top of its utility line. That, of course, would be the X7, a long-rumored three-row model that would give BMW a large family hauler to challenge the Mercedes-Benz GL.

According to The Wall Street Journal, BMW is expanding its assembly plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina, to accommodate production of the X7 alongside the X3, X4 and X5 that it already builds there for local consumption.

When Autoblog attempted to reach BMW Manufacturing in Spartanburg for comment, representatives declined to discuss the veracity of the report, saying only that announcements are planned for March 28. So until then, it looks like we'll just have to sit and wait.


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  • 29 Comments
      bofdem
      • 9 Months Ago
      Fact check on the article above: "... that it already builds there for local consumption." Actually, X3 and X5 models are built for GLOBAL consumption. I've been to the plant a bunch of times, and it's fun to guess where models are headed. Japan tends to buy a lot of sport model cars. Right-drive comprises about 15-20% of production. Unfortunately the workers (especially those in QA/final assembly) couldn't tell their arse from their foot, and thought that right-drive cars were headed to "Spain."
      SethG
      • 9 Months Ago
      Much has been made of the lineup bloat at BMW. They are certainly making some niche vehicles. But this is not one. This car will sell and sell and sell. BMW diehards with large families have had to branch out to other German brands or "settle" for Japanese or American options. Here's the problem with the lineup though. The X3 has grown and anyone really needed something bigger will want an X7. What's the point of the X5? It was BMW's first SUV but now it will be largely irrelevant. It will become BMW's Murano.
        George
        • 9 Months Ago
        @SethG
        The X3 has not really grown very much - at least on interior dimensions.
      Dwight Bynum Jr.
      • 9 Months Ago
      This seems like it should've been a no-brainer almost a decade ago. With the Mercedes GL and Audi Q7 in their 8th year of production, I am genuinely surprised to see the X7 coming AFTER the introduction of the X1, X4, and X6.
        Rr778
        • 9 Months Ago
        @Dwight Bynum Jr.
        Agreed But closer to Tahoe size than a gl would be a big differentiator. The gl is a bit cramped compared to a full size suv
      euro
      • 9 Months Ago
      Why does everyone say the plant is in Spartanburg?? It's in Greer, about 20 miles outside of Spartanburg. '
        nos2001
        • 9 Months Ago
        @euro
        correct--------greer is situated between greenvilee and spartanburg s.c. that is where the plant is.. spatanburg country., not spatanburg.
      strykerzzzz
      • 9 Months Ago
      Good auto investments in South Carolina. That's also where ZF built that huge 8 & 9 speed transmission factory recently.
      HUMANMPC2000
      • 8 Months Ago
      This SUV will have a base price in the mid to high 70 grand for a fully loaded stripper model...
      Cruising
      • 9 Months Ago
      Good the empire must expand because, "This is Sparta!"
      AlBongo
      • 9 Months Ago
      They are two types of BMW owners, the ones who drive the cars, and the ones who drive the awful crossovers. One only one of those two groups own actual BMW's. It's a simple fact. A Bayerische Motoren Werke made in South Carolina isn't German, therefore isn't a real BMW.
        George
        • 9 Months Ago
        @AlBongo
        What about BMWs made in Austria? South Africa? Your comment reeks of someone who has little experience in the matter - yet hides behind declarations of "fact". For one, the Spartanburg plant is one of BMW's most modern plants. Secondly, the crossovers, for what they are, still drive better than their competitors in the given class. That, my friend, is a fact.
        fc
        • 9 Months Ago
        @AlBongo
        And there is a third type... Ones like you that cannot afford to buy neither...Lol...
      thedriveatfive
      • 9 Months Ago
      Well the X5 is BMW's most unreliable model, maybe they can get it right with the X7.
        ghetto2315
        • 9 Months Ago
        @thedriveatfive
        Your lack of facts is insulting
        ghetto2315
        • 9 Months Ago
        @thedriveatfive
        Your lack of facts is insulting
        550PlusX5
        • 9 Months Ago
        @thedriveatfive
        Actually, my e70 X5 has been flawless. Oil change once a year, and the N55 engine is plenty pickup for a big suv... My only gripe really is I opted for the tow hitch option, and they need to work on the fit and finish of getting a tow hitch on it... (Basically, you have to cut the bumper, and the end result justl ooks unfinished).. It's been as reliable as the MDX I use to have... It's no F-10 550 or 335, or M3/M5... But for an SUV, handling it's actually quite good.....Won't autocross it though..
          akitadog
          • 8 Months Ago
          @550PlusX5
          Yeah, that whole "oil change every 15K miles" thing is for fools only, as there is no way I'm going to let an engine chock full of turbo tech, dealing with pressures far above NA engines, go that long without an oil change. I'd cut that interval in half AT LEAST. That interval is for the purposes of saving BMW money on its 3-years free service program, just long enough for you to turn in your lease and forget about it. My 2008 GTI 2.0T with DI supposedly only needs oil changes every 10K miles, but I'm not that stupid. Every 5K for me, and the powertrain has been flawless for over 65K miles.
      RCD
      • 9 Months Ago
      Put an engine that is more efficient, preferably diesel engine which can produce around 32-33 miles per gallon on highways and 25-27 on city driving and for sure you will run out of stock to sell.
      LuckyLetterman
      • 9 Months Ago
      makes so much sense. This can be a German Range Rover if they do it right
      strykerzzzz
      • 9 Months Ago
      Good auto investments in South Carolina. That's also where ZF built that huge 8 & 9 speed transmission factory recently.
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