Today BMW finally revealed its new flagship, the sixth-generation BMW 7-Series. The new model comes almost 7 years after the fifth-generation was launched in 2008. The new 7-Series was long-awaited by buyers and critics alike. BMW showcased the new 7-Series to members of the press to create hype and get their valuable opinion but on all occasions the car was hidden under disguise as you can see below.
The new car is told to bring many new innovations and technologies in “the areas of lightweight design, powertrains, chassis, operating systems, intelligent connectivity and interior ambience” to its potential buyers and are said to be “unmatched by any of its rivals”. A very bold thing to say as we all know the Mercedes-Benz S-Class is considered the benchmark for all new technologies that become the standard for all road cars 10 years later so BMW looks to overthrow its rivals but would it be successful? From the comments that were given by various members of the press it might just be the case and we all have very high expectations but only time will tell.
Moving on too what does the new BMW 7-Series brings to the table. For a start it uses carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) mixed with steel and aluminum which is a first in this segment. The overall effect of this mixed material body structure is exceptional regidity, lightness and strength.
On the engine side the new 7-Series employs the latest sixth-generation V8 and in-line six-cylinder engines which are coupled to an improved eight-speed Steptronic transmission. Options include BMW’s intelligent all-wheel-drive system simply known as xDrive. The new plug-in hybrid 740e which will be launced in only the long-wheelbase form as the 740Le will be powered by a four-cylinder internal-combustion engine and an electric motor and will have an output power of 326 hp (240 kW). The 740e gets a staggering 2.1 l/100 km combined fuel consumption rating in the EU test cycle for hybrid vehicles and 12.5 kWh/100 km combined electric power consumption. BMW gives a provisional value of 49 g/km CO2. The battery pack can also provide acceleration boost to the combustion engine when needed. The BMW eDrive technology, which was first developed for BMW i vehicles, enables all-electric and therefore locally emission-free driving at speeds of up to 120 km/h (75 mph) and with a range of up to 40 kilometres (25 miles).
The ride quality on all 7-Series is a high priority and the new 7-Series is no exception. The standard configuration includes 2-axle air suspension with automatic self-levelling and Dynamic Damper Control. Optionally you can get the Integral Active Steering system which can now also be combined with BMW xDrive. Also available is the Executive Drive Pro system with active roll stabilisation and data-based predictive function. Electromechanical anti-roll bars reduce body roll under dynamic cornering and the active chassis control system adapts the dampers’ responses to ruts and bumps in the road. Drivers can also set-up their car’s handling manually through various options for either getting a sportier handling or a more comfortable ride. There is also an ECO PRO mode for increased efficiency. Adaptive mode is a new addition to the available settings and can be activated using the all new Driving Experience Control switch. In this setting the car automatically adjusts the set-up according to the driver’s style and the route conditions.
The infotainment systems of the new 7-Series are seriously updated to meet the latest demands which includes the iDrive monitor being touch enabled in addition to the familiar Controller. The iDrive has another new feature called BMW Gesture Control which uses a 3D sensor to track the movement of the hands to do tasks such as adjusting the volume and receiving or declining calls. Also possible is the programming of specific gestures to do specific tasks. The center console now houses a new smartphone dock which integrates inductive wireless charging, which is also a first in the automotive industry.
BMW introduces an optional interior package called “Executive Lounge” which features automatic air-conditioning with 4-zone control, Electrically adjustable comfort seats with message function in the rear, active seat ventilation for all seats, Executive Lounge rear console and rear-seat entertainment experience with BMW Touch Command technology. The massage function now has a “Vitality Programme” which can engage rear passengers in active physical exercise for recuperation purposes. The Executive Lounge seating has another trick up its sleeve, the front-passenger seat can be moved forward an extra 90 mm and has a reclining footrest integrated into its backrest. The Executive Lounge rear console integrates a fold-out table, BMW Touch Command system which is actually a 7-inch tablet computer and additional cup holders. The tablet is removable and can control the infotainment and comfort functions available in the rear and can also be used for audio/video playback, surfing the internet or playing games.
The new 7-Series features a new Ambient Lighting option which now includes the “Welcome Light Carpet” which illuminates the sides of the car doors. Features reserved for the long-wheelbase version include optional Ambient Highlight which “bathes the rear compartment in an atmospheric light from light sources positioned vertically on the B-pillars” and the optional Sky Lounge Panorama glass roof. When it gets dark the glass roof is evenly illuminated by side-mounted LEDs and an imprinted graphic comes to life, creating an “atmospheric motif mimicking a starry sky”. Another option is the Ambient Air Package which ionises the air and generates a selection of eight aromas. To provide excellent sound quality, BMW uses Bowers & Wilkins Diamond surround sound system, which has been specifically tuned to the interior of the new BMW 7 Series.
Remote Control Parking
What is more interesting is the “Remote Control Parking” technology, which allows the owner to manoeuvre in or out of forward-parking spaces or garages without anyone at the wheel. The driver initiates the car to move forward into or out of the parking space using the BMW Display Key and while the car carries out this semi-automated manoeuver the driver has to watch out for obstacles.
Buyers can now opt for the new BMW Laserlight technology for their new 7-Series, which was first seen on the BMW i8. These lights are dazzle-free, more bright and provide pure white light as compared to the standerd full-LED headlights. The Laserlights provide a high-beam range of 600 m which is double compared to LEDs.
Safety & Driving Assistance
The new additions to the Driving Assistant Plus System are the Steering and lane control assistant, lane keeping assistant with active side collision protection, rear collision prevention and crossing traffic warning functions. There is also a “Traffic Jam Assistant” which uses semi-automated driving and can be used on any type of road. The Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go function now only requires drivers to press a button to use speed restrictions detected by the Speed Limit Info function. The new generation of the Surround View system now also includes a 3D View and Panorama Side View option in the Control Display.
The production of the new 7-Series will start on 1st July 2015 at the BMW Dingolfing plant.
All in all, the new sixth-generation BMW 7-Series seems to be on par with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and might deliver the promise it makes but we expect that BMW may come out with the rumoured 8-Series to compete with the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class.
For more information on sedan variants: BMW 7-Series Sedan Range 2015
For more information on long wheelbase variants: BMW 7-Series Long Wheelbase Range 2015