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New BMW 7 Series

2022 luxury flagship revealed including all electric model

The seventh generation of the BMW 7 Series has been revealed and takes aim at the Mercedes S-Class with a daring new look, the flagship saloon has been meticulously re-engineered. It is now considerably bigger, more lavish and more roomy than any previous model before it. And now for the first time is available with a fully electric powertrain in the i7.

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The radical cosmetic change starts up front, the large grille, similar to the X7, is even bigger than before bringing BMW’s ‘Iconic Lighting’ treatment first seen on the facelifted 8 Series. The headlights have a very different look with the separation of the the LED running lights positioned above and the main beams.

The new 7’s characteristics have an overall long proportioned feature,  around the side the shape is smooth and plain with only two feature lines that run from the LED running lights to the tail-lights, the tail-lights that imitate the appearance of those used on the iX, as well as copies from the BMW iX, door handles that have an internal touchpad and electronic mechanism.

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BMW’s new flagship will be introduced with a variety of different drivetrains, comprising of mild-hybrid petrol, (only in Europe, no pure petrol options) and diesel as well as a plug-in hybrid and pure-electric units.

The only diesel variant is the 740d xDrive, which has a freshly developed version of the mild-hybrid turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six. A combined power output of 295bhp and 494lb ft of torque, it is claimed to do 0-62mph in a time of 6.3sec and onto a top speed limited to 155mph.

The two petrol-electric offerings are the 750e xDrive and M760e xDrive. These engines have the latest advancement of BMW’s turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder petrol engine in combination with a gearbox-mounted electric motor. The Collective power outputs are 483bhp and 515lb ft for the 750e xDrive and 563bhp and 590lb ft for the M760e xDrive. BMW figures a  0-62mph time of 4.9sec and 4.3sec respectively as well as a restricted 155mph top speed for each. Combined with a new 18.7kWh battery, the electric range is around 52-57 miles for the 750e and 50-52 miles for the M760e, The top speed in electric mode limited to 87mph in both models.

There are other new powertrains available but are not planned for the UK, these are the six-cylinder 735i and 740i models, as well as a V8-powered 760i xDrive.

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For styling you get three different M packages to choose from (M Sport, M Sport Pro and M Performance) all of which add to performance inspired styling cues. You get a choice of chrome or black styling pieces, a choice alloys that range from 19in for a standard and up to optional 22in as part of the M Performance styling package.

Under the bodywork the new structure is advanced from the preceding CLAR architecture, it now offers pure EV, plug-in hybrid and 48V hybrid drivetrains.

Supporting the new 7 series is an air suspension system with adaptive damping which has the ability to raise the ride height by 20mm when necessary. All of the new models also receive the newest version of BMW’s Integral Active Steering, this delivers up to 3.5deg of steering angle to the rear wheels which helps maneuverability for such a long car in parking and other tight situations, with the new flagship being 130mm longer to 5391mm, and 48mm wider to 1950mm, but for headroom it is 51mm taller too, and to help body roll is an Executive Drive Pro option, which uses electric motors to conquer body roll around corners.

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Inside the new 7 Series is a familiar up-to-date look carried over from recent new BMW models, There is a newly styled dashboard that contains BMW’s latest iDrive 8 system on a curved digital display, as seen in the iX and i4. It also stashes a 12.3in instrument display and 14.9in infotainment screen. There’s also a new flat-bottom steering wheel. Between the front seats is a control panel with a gear selector, a traditional rotary iDrive controller and other touch-sensitive controls.

There is one interior feature that will catch your eye and that is a 31.3” 8K 'cinema' screen that folds down form within the roof and offers video streaming via Amazon Fire TV in 16:9, 21:9 and 32:9 formats..

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BMW i7

The all-electric i7 variant brings its own subtle touches, including a blanked-off grille with a BMW i brand logo as well as decorative elements within the bumpers and sills and a number of blue elements throughout advertising its electric form.

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The new i7 is BMW's response to the Mercedes-Benz EQS and Porsche Taycan and will start with the all electric xDrive60, this powertrain has two electric motors, one for each axle and both producing a combined power output of 536bhp and 549lb ft of torque, with this power BMW claims a 0-62 time of 4.7 seconds and a limited top speed of 149mph.

An even more powerful i7 M70 xDrive model will arrive mid next year with a power output of 597bhp, rivalling the Mercedes-AMG EQS 53.

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In combination with a 101.7kWh lithium ion battery mounted within the floorpan, it also delivers combined consumption of between 18.4 and 19.6kWh/100km, giving it an official range of between 367 and 388 miles on the WLTP test cycle. BMW also says that it went to great lengths to ensure that the ‘best and worse case’ range scenarios for the new electric i7 were as close together as possible. The company is claiming a difference of just 75km in range or a variation of just 12%.

Charging the new i7 can be attained at up to 11kW on an AC system and at up to 195kW on a DC system, with BMW claiming a 10-minute charge on the latter can add as much as 106 miles to the range. In combination with a 101.7kWh lithium ion battery mounted within the floor, it also delivers a combined consumption of between 18.4 and 19.6kWh/100km, giving it an official range of between 367 and 388 miles.

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The i7 as standard is offered with adaptive, self-levelling air suspension all round, this lowers in Sport mode by 10mm and at speeds of more than 75mph for maximum stability. And like the new 7 series can also be raised by 20mm to clear uneven road sections. On the inside the new i7 is identical to the combustion engined 7 series.

Due in the UK from December prices for the i7 xDrive60 start at £107,400.

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