27 May 2012

BMW updates the 7 Series flagship

Among all the modern day BMW, the flagship 7 Series is the oldest one, and it looks like one too. BMW technology and design evolution do not follow the same coincidence cycle. For example, the 7 Series might have debuted some of the electronic trickery that has been filtered down to the mainstream model, but the updated design philosophy only debuted with the new 1 Series and 3 Series. In an attempt to prolong relevancy of its flagship series, BMW has thrown in some updates to keep the model fresh. The new BMW 7 Series reinforces BMW’s commitment to building the finest flagship model possible with a focus on sporting elegance, superb refinement and luxurious comfort combined with efficient yet high performance powertrains.

Small design enhancements, including new optional Adaptive LED headlights, accentuate the strong, powerful lines and balanced proportions inherent to the 7 Series. Inside and the pursuit of innovation is apparent with an enhanced control display and a new optional multi-function Instrument panel providing access to the latest in BMW’s ConnectedDrive technology. Additional in-car refinement measures and further optimisation of the 7 Series’ chassis have led to an even higher level of driving comfort for the occupants.
 On the powertrain front, the updated 7 Series features a revised range of highly efficient engines, a standard eight-speed automatic gearbox and the full array of EfficientDynamics technologies thus the new BMW 7 Series combines enhanced performance with significantly reduced emissions and fuel consumption. 

From the front, the new 7 Series now presents the latest version of the famous BMW kidney grille which features a larger aperture but with nine instead of 13 slats for greater visual impact. In the lower section a full-width air intake is now split into three sections, defined by a pair of chrome bars on the outer edges and flanked by vertical air intakes that form part of the advanced aerodynamic package. The headlight internals also have been updated with the graphic that is more in-line with the new 1 and 3 Series. At the back, additional chrome element has been added at the lower valence, connecting the reflectors as well as connecting the rear light (which anyway has more red lens). Side mirrors gain an LED indicator too. The car also sits 8mm lower than before.

The interior has been re-crafted with newly design front leather seat, new 1,200 watt Bang & Olufsen Surround Sound System and an optional rear seat entertainment system. 
The powertrain range kicks in the entry level 730i which runs on the naturally aspirated 3.0L punching out 258bhp and 310Nm. The next up is the BMW 740i powered by the superb TwinPower turbo 3.0-litre straight-six, a pioneer of BMW’s integration of twin-scroll turbo technology with direct fuel injection, Double-VANOS and Valvetronic for maximum throttle response and power with highly efficient consumption. The engine has a peak power output of 320hp and a maximum torque of 450Nm. 

Fans of a higher powered version should opt for BMW 750i that comes with a revised version of the TwinPower turbo 4.4-litre V8, with optimised high pressure direct fuel injection and reduced charge cycle losses thanks to the clever integration of Valvetronic variable control of intake valve lift. The engine now delivers 10per cent more power at 449hp, and 8.5per cent more torque at a mighty 650Nm, developed over a broad rev band – enough for a 0-62mph sprint of 4.8 seconds. 

Gasoline range topper meanwhile is the 760Li powered by an  all-aluminium, 5,972cc V12 features TwinPower turbo technology, direct fuel injection and Double-VANOS variable camshaft control to produce 544hp and 750Nm of torque from as low as 1,500rpm. Predictably, this gives the 760Li superb acceleration and speed (0-62mph takes just 4.6 seconds and the top speed is limited electronically to 250 km/h), all delivered with the silky refinement. More details after the jump.

Those who are obsessed with diesel is also not left out, thanks to BMW Advanced Diesel series. The range starts with the 730d that retains its enviable position as the world’s most efficient luxury limousine. The 3.0-litre TwinPower turbo straight-six now produces 258hp and 560Nm of torque – both increases on previous outputs – but couples those figures with a combined fuel consumption of 50.4mpg and outstandingly low CO2 emissions of just 148g/km, a reduction of 30g/km versus its predecessor. EU6 compliance is also available as an option with no impact to emissions or fuel economy. The next model in the line-up is the BMW 740d, a formidable exponent of BMW’s TwinPower turbo technology featuring two turbochargers for the familiar 3.0-litre straight-six. Thanks to minor detail improvements, this engine now produces slightly more power at 313hp and an extra 30Nm of torque to make a peak of 630Nm at just 1,500rpm. However, those with serious power appetite but somehow want to eke out more mileage can opt for the 750d xDrive. Powered the new tri-turbo 3.0L as in the M550d, the superb diesel unit is rated at 375bhp and 740Nm, sufficient to propel the large sedan to 100km/h sprint in mere 4.9 seconds.

Alternatively, BMW is also offering BMW ActiveHybrid7. The 320hp 2,979cc engine with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology is taken from the ‘standard’ 740i and then adapted with a 55hp synchronous motor, a hybrid specification eight-speed automatic transmission, a lithium-ion high performance battery all wrapped into an intelligent energy management package. Performance is brisk yet economical and with low CO2 emissions. With a max output of 354hp and 500 Nm of torque the ActiveHybrid7 can accelerate from zero to 62mph in 5.7 seconds and on to a top speed of 250 km/h. However, it is capable of this at the same time as achieving 41.5mpg and emissions of 158g/km.  

Mechanically, to recap, BMW 7 Series measures 5,079mm long, 1,902mm wide and 1,471mm tall. The wheelbase is 3,070mm. The long wheelbase version is 140mm longer at 3,210 with overall length grows to 5,219mm.

Full gallery of the revised BMW 7 Series can be found below:

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