2023 BMW X7 M60i 3-row SUV Review: How Much Pampering Do You Need?

The 2023 BMW X7 is a sporty, powerful, fun to drive 3-row SUV filled with true luxury: push-button everything, a new interior and top tech in a modern update.

Scotty Reiss With The Bmw X7
Scotty Reiss with the BMW X7. Photo: Scotty Reiss

All this pampering feels so good.

“Hey BMW, set the cabin temperature to 68 degrees.” This may be one of the things I like most about the BMW X7: voice activated assistance, which is part of the multimedia system in new BMW models. You just ask for what you want — temperature, radio station, directions — and voila, it’s taken care of.  That’s just the start of what’s so special about the 2023 BMW X7, which is priced from about $77K (the 2024 model, which is practically identical to the 2023 model, gets about a $5,000 bump in the price tag). Our test model, the xDrive M60i, has a V8 twin turbo engine, produces 523 horsepower and is priced at about $113K with all the options and amenities included (most of the features we experienced can be added to the base model as an option). Redesigned for the 2023 model year, this 6 for 7 passenger 3-row SUV, the largest BMW builds, gives buyers who need it all — all the luxury, technology, driving performance and space — all that and a little more.

Related: BMW X5 45e: Electric Car Fun Without Compromising Luxury

The 2023 Bmw X7 Has Slim New Headlights

The 2023 BMW X7 has slim new headlights. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Who The 2023 BMW X7 M60i is For

  • Families who need space and want luxury
  • Buyers who need a third row for 6 or 7 passengers 
  • Buyers with tweens or teens
  • Drivers who want the full BMW driving experience 
  • Drivers who need all wheel drive for off roading
  • Tech fans who simply love all the smart technology
  • Buyers seeking the latest, greatest thing 
  • Buyers who want all their passengers to feel pampered

Related: 7 Wonderful 7 Passenger Luxury SUVS

Love This Clamshell Liftgate

Love this clamshell liftgate. Photo: Scotty Reiss

What We Loved About the 2023 BMW X7 M60i 

  • 3 rows of climate controlled, heated and vented, leather covered seating
  • Massaging front seats
  • The wide, flat curved multimedia screen
  • Crystal topped controls
  • A crystal gear selector 
  • Voice activated assistance 
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • All wheel drive
  • Clamshell liftgate 
  • Panoramic sunroof, and a separate sunroof panel for the 3rd row
  • Driver’s seat controls for 2nd row slide-and-tilt to allow 3rd row access
  • V8 twin turbo power with 523 HP (it’s a 375 HP V6 twin turbo in the lower trim X40i)
  • Sport mode
  • Head up display 
  • Back up assistant
  • Run flat tires are standard

Related: 10 Full Size 3 Row Luxury SUVs: Feel Like a Boss Babe

Scotty Reiss With The Bmw X7

Scotty Reiss with the BMW X7. Photo: Scotty Reiss

The Largest BMW Ever Built — But With Some Caveats

While this is the largest SUV that BMW builds, it’s not huge— for good and bad.  For good: it’s fun to drive, easy to park and feels more like the performance car that inspired it than a huge SUV filled with BMW bling. It’s a true BMW.  For bad: it’s challenge to accommodate so many of the things that families might need, such as full-time 3rd row use, rear facing car seats, strollers, large sports bags or all the flotsam that comes with family life. For reference, the Cadillac Escalade is 9” longer and 4” taller. However, if this is the car you’ve dreamed of, you can make it work. One rear-facing car seat will fit behind the passenger’s seat, though the passenger may have to give up some leg room. Captains chairs ($850) will make accessing the 3rd row easier, and every passenger in every seat will feel special. Our test model had a bench seat so we didn’t get to try out captains chairs, but I highly recommend them. Getting into the third row, despite all the electric controls for the seats, is a challenge and once there, there is precious little leg room. 

Rear Seat Legroom In The 2023 Bmw X7

Rear seat legroom in the 2023 BMW X7. Photo: Scotty Reiss

How To Best Configure Child Car Seats

While the BMW X7 M60i probably isn’t the car you’d want to fill with kids in car seats, you could. There are four full LATCH sets: lower anchors in the center outboard seats and in the two 3rd row seats; there are upper tethers on all 5 rear seats.  Booster car seats or forward facing car seats will fit on all seats; the best seat for a rear facing car seat or infant seat is the center row passenger-side seat.  Will 3 car seats fit across the center bench? Probably— as long as they are all slim. However, if you choose the bench and install children’s car seats on the outboard seats, it will be impossible to access the 3rd row. The slide and tilt function will not work with a child car seat installed. To access the 3rd row, install car seats only on an outboard and center seat, or opt for captains chairs.

Buttons Move The Center Row For 3Rd Row Access, And Turn On Massaging Seats

Buttons move the center row for 3rd row access, and turn on massaging seats. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Electric Seat Controls For 3rd Row Access

If you’re considering buying this car, you need to know this: There are buttons to control the 3rd row just about everywhere. First, there is a button on the driver’s door that slides the center row forward to allow for 3rd row access, and you can set it to slide the entire row, just the passenger’s side or just the driver’s side seats.  To slide and tilt the center seats forward, front seats move too, so don’t let this surprise you. Push the button again to restore the seats to their original position, including the front seats. It’s all a bit of a show. To slide and tilt the center row seats from center row, push a button on the center row seat shoulder. To fold the 3rd row up or down, there are buttons on the wall just next to the center row seats.  There are buttons in the cargo area to put up or down both the third row and the center row.  Phew. That’s a lot of buttons; but there are also manual red straps you can pull to operate all seats manually too, in case the electric system fails. 

3Rd Row Seats In The Bmw X7

3rd Row seats in the BMW X7; USB ports are under the panel just below the cup holder. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Maybe the Most Pampering 3rd Row Ever?

Once in the 3rd row, passengers will be pampered by all the amenities: 

  • A separate climate control panel
  • A sunroof with a sun shade
  • Ambient lighting Two USB-C ports 
  • Heated seats — yes, heated 3rd row seats!  
  • And of course, cup holders

Position the center row seats a bit forward and the 3rd row is not a bad place to ride. However, consider that with center row seats pushed forward, those passengers will have less leg room, too. 

The Front Seat In The 2023 Bmw X7

The front seat in the 2023 BMW X7. Photo: Scotty Reiss

A Delicious New Design

BMW made subtle changes to the exterior of the X7 so as not to ruin the overall look and feel; this is the hallmark of a luxury car: design should be classic and constant. On the outside there are slender new headlights and re-tooled air intake grilles; the rear look almost untouched.  On the inside the updates are significant, from the flat screen that spans the dashboard for driver information and multimedia; a command center with the toggle gear selector, iDrive dial and drive mode buttons; and air vents integrated into the dashboard. The look is modern and sporty and there’s more function at your fingertips without being visually overwhelming. Seating is predictably luxurious, with quilted leather and leatherette in the base model. There are options for an Alcantara ceiling headliner, wood, metal or gloss accents and even a leather dashboard cover. Rear passengers can also opt for an Alcantara headrest pillow, which I highly recommend. It makes you feel so special. 

The Bmw X7 Key

The BMW X7 key. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Oh, Yes, There’s a Performance Engine, Too

Lest we forget that this is the Ultimate Driving Machine, the X7 offers three engine options: the xDrive 40i with a V6 twin turbo that produces 375 HP; the M60i with a V8 twin turbo that produces 523 HP, which was in our test model; and the Alpina XB7, with a V8 that produces 631 HP.  The V8 shines; you’ll hear its subtle growl on the road, a little more pronounced in sport mode, and you’ll feel the BMW’s commanding capability on the highway and back roads. It’s fun to drive and never gives the feeling of driving a huge truck.  However, it is not a sports car, which is a good thing. We don’t want back seat passengers to feel nauseous or whipped around on the drive. The X7’s all wheel drive system and stability control is designed to assist with this, as is something in the M60I called “Active Comfort Drive” which uses navigation and sensors to predict turns and bumps in the road and mitigate the impact on passengers.

There Is 12.8 Cubic Feet Of Space Behind The 3Rd Row

There is 12.8 cubic feet of space behind the 3rd row. Photo: Scotty Reiss

What You Need to Know 

  • This is a full luxury SUV, even in the base model
  • All wheel drive is standard
  • BMW calls this ‘full sized’ but it’s smaller than many other full sized SUVs on the road
  • This SUV is better for families with older kids; accommodating car seats can be a challenge
  • Most features can be added to the base model as an option
  • Captains chairs are an $850 addition
  • 12.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the 3rd row; 48.6 cubic feet behind the second row
  • Base model V6 estimated to get 22MPG city/highway combined; our test model estimated to get 18 MPG combined
The Surround View Camera In The 2023 Bmw X7

The surround view camera in the 2023 BMW X7. Photo: Scotty Reiss

What the BMW X7 Costs 

  • Base X7 x Drive 40i with twin turbo V6 engine, 375 HP, AWD $81,900
  • M sport design package $2,900
  • Leatherette is standard, add leather for $1,950- $4,650
  • Panoramic sunroof, premium sound, heated and cooled cupholders, soft close doors, electric sun shades, front massaging seats and gesture control, $3950
  • Driving assistance package including adaptive cruise control, $2,100
  • Captains chairs $850
  • Crystal-topped controls $650
  • MSport brakes, illuminated kidney grille and MSport exhaust, $1,350
  • Premium Bowers and Wilkins sound, $3,500
  • Our test model, X7 M60i twin turbo V8 with 523 HP and AWD starts at $108,300 and included full marino leather, piano gloss trim, driving assistance, panoramic sunroof, heated and cooled cupholders, crystal controls, heated and vented seats, heated rear seats and 5 zone climate control, was preceded at $121,680
  • The BMW Alpina XB7 starts at $149,400
The Bmw X7 Has A Forward Facing Camera

The BMW X7 has a forward facing camera. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Yes, There’s a Little More

BMW does a nice job of adding a lot of luxury details: electric window shades; the clamshell lift gate that opens from the center so you can open just the top or both top and bottom; a panoramic sunroof for front and center seats and a sunroof over the 3rd row; full LATCH systems in all rows; heated seats in all rows; heated and cooled front cupholders; massaging seats; a button to slide and tilt center row seats for 3rd row access. Voice activated assistance. It goes on and on. But, this is the full luxury experience. And fully pampering. 

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Journalist, entrepreneur and mom. Expertise includes new cars, family cars, 3-row SUVs, child passenger car seats and automotive careers... More about Scotty Reiss