2020 Chevrolet Tahoe vs. 2019 BMW X7

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front, middle and rear (child comfort guides) seat shoulder belts of the Chevrolet Tahoe are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X7 doesn’t offer height-adjustable front seat belts.

Both the Tahoe and X7 have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Tahoe has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The X7’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Tahoe are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The X7 doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Tahoe has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The X7 doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

Both the Tahoe and the X7 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, front parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

Chevrolet’s powertrain warranty covers the Tahoe 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than BMW covers the X7. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the X7 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 9 times as many Chevrolet dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Tahoe’s warranty.

Reliability

The Tahoe has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The X7 doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Tahoe’s reliability 12 points higher than the X7.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Tahoe first among large SUVs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The X7 isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 17 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 20th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 7th.

Engine

The Tahoe’s standard 5.3 V8 produces 20 more horsepower (355 vs. 335) and 53 lbs.-ft. more torque (383 vs. 330) than the X7 xDrive40i’s standard 3.0 turbo 6 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Tahoe’s fuel efficiency. The X7 doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Chevrolet Tahoe uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended with the 6.2 V8 engine for maximum performance). The X7 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Tahoe has 4.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the X7 (26 vs. 21.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

A 10-speed automatic is standard on the Chevrolet Tahoe EcoTec3 6.2 V8, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the X7.

Brakes and Stopping

The Tahoe stops shorter than the X7:

Tahoe

X7

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

140 feet

141 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

The Chevrolet Tahoe’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The BMW X7 only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Tahoe has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The X7 doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

The Tahoe has a standard full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the X7, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare or run-flat tires, either of which has mileage and speed limitations.

Suspension and Handling

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Tahoe is 2.4 inches wider in the front and 1.6 inches wider in the rear than on the X7.

For better maneuverability, the Tahoe’s turning circle is 3.8 feet tighter than the X7’s (39 feet vs. 42.8 feet).

Passenger Space

The Tahoe offers optional seating for 9 passengers; the X7 can only carry 7.

The Tahoe has .9 inches more front headroom, 5.5 inches more front legroom, 4.8 inches more front shoulder room, 1.4 inches more rear legroom, 7 inches more rear shoulder room, 1.1 inches more third row headroom and 14.7 inches more third row shoulder room than the X7.

Cargo Capacity

The Tahoe’s cargo area provides more volume than the X7.

Tahoe

X7

Third Seat Folded

51.7 cubic feet

48.6 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

94.7 cubic feet

90.4 cubic feet

The Tahoe’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The X7’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Tahoe’s available liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The X7 doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its tailgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Payload and Towing

Maximum trailer towing in the BMW X7 is limited to 7500 pounds. The Tahoe offers up to a 8600 lbs. towing capacity.

The Tahoe has a much higher standard payload capacity than the X7 (1670 vs. 1202 lbs.).

The Tahoe has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the X7 (1720 vs. 1202 lbs.).

Ergonomics

The Tahoe’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The X7 does not have a temperature gauge.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Tahoe has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the X7 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

Consumer Reports rated the Tahoe’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the X7’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

The Tahoe has a 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The X7 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Model Availability

The Tahoe is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The X7 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Tahoe owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Tahoe will cost $6870 to $8870 less than the X7 over a five-year period.

The Tahoe will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Tahoe will retain 50.08% to 50.55% of its original price after five years, while the X7 only retains 37.87% to 40.24%.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Chevrolet Tahoe will be $35388 to $45166 less than for the BMW X7.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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