BMW turns the X7 into a pickup truckby Ronan Glon
Yes, it's real. No, you can't buy one.
BMW has transformed the X7, its biggest SUV, into a pickup that can carry five passengers and an F 850 GS motorcycle. Seriously. Check your calendar: April 1st was months ago. Don't expect to see the truck in showrooms anytime soon, though.
The Munich-based company explained the truck was designed and built by students enrolled at the vocational training center it operates a stone's throw from its headquarters. The X7 pickup is a one-off model, then, but it's a convincingly realistic one. Trainees notably used carbon fiber to make the roof panel, the rear door skins, and the tailgate in order to keep weight in check. The result is a truck that weighs 440 pounds less than the SUV it's based on.
The X7 pickup looks ready for production. Details like chromed grab handles behind the cab, and a wood-lined cargo compartment suggest it's not merely a hack job. The trainees put a tremendous amount of thought and effort into making the truck.
There are no mechanical changes to report. Power comes from a 3.0-liter straight-six engine turbocharged to 340 horsepower. An eight-speed automatic transmission channels the six's power to the four wheels. BMW hasn't published the X7's towing capacity, or revealed the effect the pickup conversion has on performance.
The company repeatedly stressed the X7 truck is merely a one-off created to show what its trainees are capable of, and it's not planning on adding the model or anything like it to its line-up of models anytime soon. "Series implementation is not planned. Special projects such as this serve during training to convey and deploy the required capabilities in practice," BMW explained in a statement.
Time will tell whether the truck truly is merely an end-of-year project for BMW's class of 2019, or if its students covertly helped the company's marketing department gauge customer interest in an adventure-ready pickup.