2015 BMW 7 Series – first image leaks out – Autocar
The BMW 7 Series will be officially revealed to the world on 10 June, but the firm’s Austrian market website has already accidently shown an image of the undisguised car on its online configurator.
The official bmw.at website revealed the new 7 Series will initially come with the choice of three engines and either standard rear- or optional four-wheel drive.
Included is a new turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder common rail diesel that goes under the internal codename B57 with 257bhp in the 730d and 730d Xdrive. It is joined by a new turbocharged 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder petrol unit codenamed B58 with 317bhp in the 740i.
Topping the launch line-up is the 750i Xdrive, which uses a twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 with 444bhp.
According to the BMW Austria website, the wheel choices for the new 7 Series, codenamed G11 (rear-wheel drive) and G12 (four-wheel drive), will range in sizes from 17- to 20-inches in diameter, while buyers will get the choose between 13 different exterior colours, including Alpine White, Black College, Black Sapphire, Carbon Black, Glacier Silver, Cashmere Silver, Sophisto Grey, Imperial Blue, Magellan Grey, Singapore Grey, Mineral White, Arctic Grey Brilliant Effect and Jatoba.
Other features outlined on the on-line configurator include an M-Sport Package, Driving Assistance Plus, adaptive full LED headlamps, a Pure Excellence interior, Alcantara headliner among a myriad of other options.
The 730d will cost €100,445 (around £73,000) in standard rear-wheel drive form and rise to €107,480 (around £78,000) in four-wheel drive 730d Xdrive guise, while the rear-wheel drive 740i goes for €107,690 (around £78,000) and the four-wheel drive 750i Xdrive is priced at €137,935 (around £100,000).
Prior to the leak on the Austrian site, BMW had only shown a teaser video of the car. The video showed the profile of the car,but only offered glimpses of the rest of the new 7 Series. A rear shot confirmed the existence of a 750Li in the new range, while it also shows that the car will feature the Laserlight technology first seen on the i8 supercar.
Previous spy pictures, published to BimmerToday, also revealed more of the new luxury model’s detailing. Previously, the 7 Series has only been spotted testing in camouflage.
Sales of the sixth-generation 7 Series are due to get under way later this year. Key among the goals for the new 7 Series is a significant weight reduction via the use of a combination of aluminium, magnesium, high-strength steel and carbonfibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP), the latter of which is set to be used not only for the bonnet and roof but also in load-bearing areas in the floorpan and body.
Autocar has already driven a pre-production prototype of the new 7 Series, in 740i form, which will be one of the first models to arrive in the UK. The initial line-up will also include 750i and 740d models.
Speaking about the new car, BMW boss Norbert Reithofer said: “It will set a new standard in its class in terms of weight saving.”
Engineers say processes developed for the i3 and i8 have been adopted on the new BMW flagship in a bid to shed up to 200kg over its predecessor. This should ensure that the successor to the lightest of today’s 7 Series models, the 740i, tips the scales at around 1650kg, or less than the existing 535i.
BMW’s next 5 Series and 3 Series should also benefit from this lightweight technology.
Prototypes seen testing reveal that the new 7 Series retains similar dimensions to those of the current model, launched in 2008. As with its predecessor, the luxury saloon will be built in standard and long-wheelbase guises, but plans also exist for an extra-long-wheelbase model.
Underpinning the new car is a modular platform that forms part of a longitudinal engine matrix that is already used by the 3 and 4-series and is set to be adopted by replacements for the 5 and 6-series.
The light but rigid structure is allied to an aluminium-intensive suspension system that uses double wishbones up front and a multi-link rear set-up at the rear together with a new generation of air springs and road-scanning technology. That’s in combination with stereo cameras, with the package aimed at giving the new BMW greater levels of ride comfort and better refinement than before.
The new model will be offered with a range of turbocharged four, six, eight and 12-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, a standard nine-speed automatic transmission and the option of rear or four-wheel drive.
The petrol engines are based around a new modular architecture with a 500cc individual cylinder capacity. A heavily updated version of today’s 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine is planned, along with a new 4.0-litre V8 and a 6.0-litre V12. The V8 and the V12 are also set to be used by Rolls-Royce.
Diesels will include a 2.0-litre four in a new entry-level model and a 3.0-litre straight six, the latter of which will appear in three states of tune and both twin and triple-turbocharged forms.
To further boost the model’s presence in the luxury performance market, BMW is looking at creating a new M7 or M750i M Performance version, likely to receive a heavily tuned version of the M5’s twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 producing more than 600bhp.
Also planned from the off is a plug-in petrol-electric hybrid, the 740e, which will bring zero-emissions capability to the line-up for the first time.
The Future Luxury concept seen at the Beijing show provided the first hints not only of BMW’s new design language but also its in-car technology, which will rely heavily on speech recognition in a move aimed at reducing the number of controls and lessen dependency on the rotary iDrive controller.
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