You have got to hand it to BMW, they really do push the limits of design and personal taste. They seem to have no care in the world for their heritage. They don’t do evolution, they don’t even do revolution. From the outside looking in, it appears BMW adopts a boom-bust design style approach. It either works or it’s controversial. And that philosophy is exemplified with the all-new, from the ground up all-new, yes all new BMW 7 Series. On first impression, it looks as though it is a knock-off replica made by a backstreet mechanic from Vietnam.
The biggest distraction is the oversized grill, one presumes it is hiding all manner of modern radar-guided, self-driving technology and Lord Lucan. The grille incorporates LED lighting and illuminates at night if needs must. The front bumper incorporates real air channels to manage real airflow over the front tyres.
The new, from the ground up, BMW 7 Series, is all about the front grille, which appears out of proportion with… reality. So much so that it distracts from the rest of the car. But you know what, we actually like the new, from the ground up, 7 Series. And as with all new, from the ground up, BMWs, in the end, you understand what the designers and the board were thinking.
The new 7 Series will be offered with a range of drivetrains to include pure-electric models in addition to the usual petrol mild hybrid and plugin hybrid derivative models. Bizarrely BMW is continuing to offer diesel options. So much for corporate sustainability. Have they learned nothing from dieselgate?
Nevertheless, the new 7 Series will only be offered with one diesel engine, a mild hybridised 3.0-litre straight-six. This unit will offer 295bhp and 670 Nm of torque. And that engine will do the usual BMW stuff such as propel the car from 0-62mph in 6.3 seconds, average 45mpg, while the top speed is restricted to 155mph.
And of course, BMW will offer high-performance variants. The M750e xDrive and M760e xDrive will be powered by a mild-hybridized 3.0-litre straight-six petrol engine and or plug-in hybrid derivative. The M750xDrive will offer 483bhp and the M760e xDrive will offer 563bhp. Both will be more than fast enough and use more fuel than a cruise ship.
BMW has re-engineered the air suspension and adaptive dampers so expect peerless ride and handling from the new 7 Series. And as much as we criticize BMW, for “established” Martin’s dislike, they do know what they are doing when it comes to ride and handling. The exception is the BMW F21 M135i, which was nothing more than a tarte in a suit.
The interior is luxuriously appointed with the latest in modern tech LED ambient lighting. Remotely operated doors open and close at a touch of a button. The driver’s field of view will be dominated by a digital 12.3in instrument display and 14.9in infotainment screen. As far as options go, the one generating the most interest is a roof-mounted and integrated 31.8 inch 8K cinema screen.
Rear passengers have never had it so good, the cinema screen unfolds from the roof allowing rear-seated passengers to watch TV while tweeting or sending Instagram snaps that they are watching TV from the back of a BMW 7 Series.
The new BMW 7 series is larger, more luxuriously appointed than ever before. It is significantly more controversial due to the new external design language. The new, from the ground up BMW 7 Series will arrive in UK showrooms around November. Prices are yet to be confirmed, we can guess it will be expensive, even before options.