But all is not lost.
BMW offers a full-fat M variant of just about every vehicle it sells. And we mean proper M cars, not a mildly sportier M Performance model without the rigorous chassis tuning and dedicated hardcore engine that earns every M car its stripes. So, when the brand launched its biggest SUV ever, the three-row X7, the prospect of an X7 M soon began to capture the imagination of enthusiasts.
Sadly, it seems that the X7 is set to follow the 7 Series in this regard. According to the latest information from BMW Blog, an X7 M isn't on the agenda and there are no signs that it ever will be. It's disappointing news for BMW fans, but more promisingly, an X8 M is still on the way and so is the 2021 BMW Alpina XB7.
Even more intriguingly, the X8 M is expected to be a completely standalone model, not merely a coupe-like version of the X7. This is a new direction for the M Division, which seemed to follow a similar formula for its hyped-up SUVs, such as the X4 M which shares pretty much everything with the X3 M besides its styling.
For those who consider the current X7 range-topper - the 523-horsepower M50i - to be a bit of a sluggard, the 2021 BMW Alpina XB7 has just been announced and it's everything you would imagine an X7 M to be.
Alpina seems to have a knack for tuning fast BMWs, endowing them with true M-car performance without making them uncomfortable to live with. It's why we described the Alpina B7 as the best new BMW we had driven, which bodes well for the 612-hp XB7.
The XB7 is said to hit 60 mph in four seconds dead before reaching a top speed of 188 mph, and those are the numbers that the X8 M will have to beat to be considered the ultimate BMW SUV, but for now not much is known about this coupe-SUV - besides that it's likely to be the largest of its kind among the Germans.
Some purists will argue that an Alpina isn't a replacement for a true M car and that only an X7 M will do. For the more objective among us, the XB7 is the perfect full-size performance SUV from BMW and more than enough to give the 2021 Mercedes-AMG GLS 63, and even the future X8 M, a lot to think about.