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      05-06-2012, 08:20 PM   #1
SCOTT26
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World War...SUV (BMW X7, X8, CS II)

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World War...SUV. Part One.

Why the future of the luxury car is the SUV.

Established luxury brands are getting ready to fight a new battle in the luxury segment that comes not only from their competition, but also from the enemy within... That enemy being their equivalent luxury SUV.

Over the past few months we have seen "elite" SUV's such as from established luxury marques such as Bentley - which if you look beyond the design, you can understand why.

Lamborghini's URUS concept is actually quite striking in real life - it actually works from a design angle as well as a business proposition. The new Mercedes-Benz GL-Klasse is now thankfully more S-Klasse than ML-KlasseXL and we will soon be seeing an all new Range Rover.

Some are quick to make the assumption that their will be a Rolls-Royce SUV but BMW feel that a sportier X7 fills that high-end SAV role better than a RR. To make his point a photograph of a Cadillac Escalade with a Phantom front end was sent through BMW to show how illconceived it would be.

Industry analysts have predicted that the future for the luxury segment is within SUVs and "Downsized" luxury cars. At last weeks Beijing Autoshow the onus was on the declining western market for large luxury sedans and rising market within China. But one factor was significant in both markets... The rise of the SUV. One thing noticed is that a single luxury concept is no longer sustainable in this case, The BMW 7er can no longer stand as BMWs only high-end luxury offering.

In China at least if we take the 7er into consideration the car achieves 52% of global sales , having dislodged the US from the no 1 position. The average age of a 7er owner in China is 28, nine out of ten 7ers sold in China are fully specified via BMW individual , and around five out of ten or thereabouts are the flagship 760Li . When everything is taken into consideration - The 7er does make a lot of profit for BMW.
The Mercedes-Benz S-Klasse also offers similiar contributions but with sales in China at 40%. Apply this to potential SUVs and you can see why the "elite"SUV is the next big thing. Current SUVs are now just under 60%.

A refreshed Life cycle Impulse of the 7er is due in a few weeks , although BMW did unveil the car to a selected audience in Beijing taken into consideration its now largest market and customer base, BMW have expanded the attributes to appeal to that demographic by even offering exclusive BMW Individual finishes such as Moonstone as a Matte paint option.

Although the 7er stands at the top , BMW have had previous attempts to sustain the car in the luxury segment with both the 8er coupe and illfated CS Concept car which if you take the 6er Gran Coupe, is the phoenix that arose from the CS's wreckage.

To further sustain the car and increase profitability in the high end luxury segment , BMW are investigating several concepts that can help sustain the 7er and BMW's presence within the luxury market.
Here we look at each tabled idea and probablility.


BMW 7er XLi
Probability : Medium
The 7er XLi is reusing the idea of the previous E38 but is specifically aimed at China. Using an extended wheelbase made easy by the next generation modular matrix which can be stretched to accomodate. The XLi is seen as the car that (in China) at least if they cannot stretch to the Rolls-Royce brand this would be the next available choice. The car could also follow the 3erLi and 5erLi and be built in mainland China.


BMW X7
Probablity : High
The X7 is very much progressing ahead even further than two previous incarnations. The SUV in elite form is the next growth segment . The recent Bentley and Lamborghini concepts were no fluke and despite the appearance (Bentley) they point to a new segment , something the current Range Rover investigated to a surprise success. Given the delicate history of the Rolls-Royce brand , both BMW's CEO and RR CEO are not convinced that the SUV should be added to the RR brand. The next choice of course is BMW.

The concept of an X7 is not new at BMW , both were virtually conceived under the previous E53 X5 and current E70 as potential ideas incorporating the original BMW vision for the Range Rover - unsurpassed luxury , space and even with a V12 engine.

The proposed X7 is not just a super-sized X5 , some designs equal a car with a more progressively sloping roofline which enhances its luxury credentials aswell as a more luxury inspired interior. An X7 being based off the X5 and using 7er technology in both material and drivetrain would be a profitable choice for BMW , protecting the RR brand and offering customers the ultimate BMW SAV in a position to take a signicant advantage out of the high end luxury SUV segment.

Given the importantance of the SUV within any segment. By 2017 - BMW's entire series line wil contain an SAV/SAC model. With lower designated SAC models offering the choice of 3dr and 5dr.

These models are highly profitable to BMW both in the present and the future.


BMW Large Coupe and Cabrio
Probability - Low
A larger coupe and cabrio is not effectively needed. Thanks to the 6er covering all bases, the CS Concept car was conceived to fill this niche with something the competition could not do at the time.


BMW CS II
Probablility - High
The BMW board loved the CS , so did the designers and the engineers. Under Gerhard Richter the car promised much in terms of engineering and overall scope. It was a sad day when the car was cancelled due to the economic crisis. The CS was conceived to distance the BMW brand further from the competition and build that bridge to Rolls-Royce. Competitors only offered 2dr Coupes at that time in that luxury segment, BMW were aiming to be the first with the ultimate high end luxury performance Coupe. CS was even going to be an M.

The CS was consumed by the economic crisis which lead to a lazarus effect with the 6er Gran Coupe which incorporates many CS proposals such as BMW Individual interiors and unique passenger arrangements.

A proposal for a second generation CS to sit on top of the BMW 7er is well into conception. With the next 7er allowing flexibility for CFRP use in the cars body and under structure. The CS II will be well advanced in taking advantage of BMW's lightweight philosophy.

Both X7 and CS II would be considerable sustainment to the 7er and both be highly profitable.


BMW X8
Probablility - Medium.
An X8 is possible if it follows the same philosophy as the X6 and forthcoming X4 by being based on the equivalent model. Given the success of the X6 , an X8 is certainly an interesting proposition, however this car could actually be re-invented within the BMWi brand as the BMW i6 which is undergoing conception in Munich. i6 is effectively an SAC utilising the BMWi design language which in some cases , it can be mistaken for a raised and detail enhanced i8.


In Part Two.
We will look at the next challenge of the SUV and its dominance in all key segments and how by 2017 , not only BMW , but also Mercedes-Benz and Audi will have all segments lined up with profitable SUV's and similar concepts.
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      05-06-2012, 09:58 PM   #2
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While profits are the main reason bmw is alive, the trend here is not good. Im chinese and travel there often with friends driving bmws that dont know the point of the brand. A economic recession will happen in china in 3-5 years time and nobody will buy cars. Im extremely dissapointed decisions made destroying the whole point of the brand
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      05-06-2012, 10:55 PM   #3
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good stuff!
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      05-07-2012, 08:48 AM   #4
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Following in Detrot's own footsteps.
Let's hope they don't put too many development eggs in this basket. If for political reasons China puts a kibosh on excessive, flamoyant, consumption, this bet may go very wrong.
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      05-07-2012, 11:03 AM   #5
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interesting choice of mockup re Cadillac Escalade with RR front.
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      05-07-2012, 11:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newowner35i View Post
While profits are the main reason bmw is alive, the trend here is not good. Im chinese and travel there often with friends driving bmws that dont know the point of the brand. A economic recession will happen in china in 3-5 years time and nobody will buy cars. Im extremely dissapointed decisions made destroying the whole point of the brand
+1
Surely, all these car manufacturers must know that China is heading for a major recessesion in the next 5-7 yrs. In essentially, what is a manufacturing/production and secondary banking/real estate boom is going to halt. Some are saying the bank backlash will be worse than our 2008 crash here.

If they are projecting 7-10 yrs of product line up with current market growth rates, they are screwed.
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      05-07-2012, 12:51 PM   #7
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CS II? Who is buying such a car? Why would anyone need an even larger BMW than a 7er? Im sorry but BMW board are way off here, there is no bridge between BMW and RR that a big BMW can fill, no one is buying $150K sedans from BMW
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      05-07-2012, 01:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCOTT26 View Post
The average age of a 7er owner in China is 28, nine out of ten 7ers sold in China are fully specified via BMW individual , and around five out of ten or thereabouts are the flagship 760Li .
Holy shit.
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      05-07-2012, 01:35 PM   #9
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Scott,

What's the difference between the "BMW Large Coupe", which has a low probability of getting into production, and a CSII, which has a high probability? Aren't you describing the same car?

Edit: Never mind. I see now that the CSII would be a sedan.
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      05-07-2012, 02:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptack View Post
Following in Detrot's own footsteps.
Let's hope they don't put too many development eggs in this basket. If for political reasons China puts a kibosh on excessive, flamoyant, consumption, this bet may go very wrong.
Couldn't have said it better myself but one would think Munich already knows this and has planned for it.

And just because it is a high probability as Scott said does not mean it will absolutely hit the market.

There is definitely a demand for the X7- I like many people feel the Rangie is too soft and bloated even the upcoming Mark IV and an X7 would fill the gap for a sportier large SUV.

-Bond
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      05-07-2012, 02:39 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IancoleTX
Quote:
Originally Posted by SCOTT26 View Post
The average age of a 7er owner in China is 28, nine out of ten 7ers sold in China are fully specified via BMW individual , and around five out of ten or thereabouts are the flagship 760Li .
Holy shit.

Yeh I can't believe this either...

If I had that much of a budget, I'd at least get the M5. The 7er is too big?

Obviously the Chinese market is a whole different ball game!
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      05-07-2012, 02:55 PM   #12
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I understand the extreme growth in China with all car brands, not just BMW.

But to let it shape or dictate what models are being built is difficult to take in.
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      05-07-2012, 02:55 PM   #13
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      05-07-2012, 02:58 PM   #14
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Pretty strange, all of this.
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      05-07-2012, 02:58 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MI6 View Post
There is definitely a demand for the X7- I like many people feel the Rangie is too soft and bloated even the upcoming Mark IV and an X7 would fill the gap for a sportier large SUV.

-Bond
New Range Rover is just around the corner. Said to be up to 1,000 lbs lighter.

They hit is huge with the Evoque, I bet the new Range Rover won't disappoint.
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      05-07-2012, 03:01 PM   #16
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BMW CS

What is so special about the CS?
Isn't it basically a 6 GC?
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      05-07-2012, 03:05 PM   #17
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I fear china being the main market now will not be good for the brands motives. All they care about in China is rear legroom.


I don't think a lot of your predictions are going to be true. BMW is all about environmental sustainability. Bringing in a titanic SUV would slaughter their goals.
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      05-07-2012, 03:10 PM   #18
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Too. Many. Models.
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      05-07-2012, 03:21 PM   #19
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I would definitely be interested in an x7...diesel : )

Awesome info; thanks!!
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      05-07-2012, 03:22 PM   #20
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As long as BMW places a blue and white badge on it, people around the world will buy it. BMW is perceived around the world as the ultimate premium automotive brand along with Audi and Mercedes so when people want to feel high ...they can now pick out whichever weird concoction BMW makes ...its like being thirsty at a coke machine.
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      05-07-2012, 03:29 PM   #21
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As long as they make sure the M3 and M6 are on point... I could care less about all of this stuff.
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      05-07-2012, 03:45 PM   #22
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I can't keep up with all this stuff! lol. Excited to see all future developments that BMW is making.
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