The BMW X7 Is Officially Going To Be A Huge Thing From South Carolina

In the midst of celebrating 20 years of its Spartanburg, South Carolina assembly plant, BMW today announced it's going to invest $1 billion in the plant and add a range-topping X7 SUV to the lineup.

The investment includes upping capacity at BMW's U.S. plant to 450,000 cars per year by the end of 2016, up from 300,000 today, and make it the company's largest in the world. It is the "Center of Competency for X Models," after all.

That means in two years, BMW will have the space to produce the existing X3, X5 and X6, the 2015 X4 that has also just kicked off production, as well as this X7 that's expected to be a big three-row crossover and do battle with the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class.

At today's press conference, BMW's Chairman of the Board of Management Dr. Norbert Reithofer said the X7 will be "highly fuel efficient, while offering outstanding driving performance." So it's safe to assume it's going to be X5 with a more usable third row.

Speaking of the X5, a production version of the plug-in hybrid BMW X5 is also coming to Spartanburg.

OK, now someone stop them from making the plant even bigger so they can't make an X8 super-luxury Sports Activity Coupe or whatever.

Photo: BMW