To the disappointment of speed freaks everywhere, BMW has shown little interest in producing a high-performance M variant of the marque’s X7 SUV. Fortunately, all is not lost, as the company’s tuning arm, Alpina, is reportedly bringing a modified version of the full-size crossover to the US.
Alpina president Andreas Bovensiepen is already on the record saying that a performance version of the X7 “would be great for the US.” Now, a masked prototype of the vehicle has been spotted in the wild several times since the summer, according to Motor 1. The company reportedly plans to retune nearly every aspect of the three-row crossover, its engine in particular, for a vehicle that will be dubbed the XB7.
Other upgrades to the SUV include the suspension, brakes, steering, eight-speed transmission and xDrive all-wheel-drive system. While the XB7 looks just like a normal X7 to the untrained eye, there are subtle differences between the two vehicles, most notably the XB7’s lower stance and larger wheels.
Alpina will make two versions of the XB7, according to recent reports. The first, which is for the European market, is expected to feature the same extremely powerful engine the company has used for its other modified BMW SUVs—a 3.0-liter inline-six diesel motor that churns out more than 394 hp and 560 lb-ft of torque. That just might make it the most powerful production SUV in the world. The second iteration, destined for American shores, will reportedly feature the same 4.4-liter V8 engine capable of outputting 600 hp that can be found in the company’s B7, the only other Alpina currently available in the US. That’s worth getting excited about if you’re looking for a full-sized SUV with some serious pep.
If reports are correct, Alpina’s XB7 will hit European roads during the first quarter of 2020. An American version is expected to arrive a few months later. Pricing is unknown, but expect it to be well north of the X7’s $73,900 starting price. Robb Report has reached out to Alpina for more information about the XB7 and its arrival in the US. Watch this space for updates.