- BMW i7 will be the automaker's first electric executive sedan
- 31-inch hi-res rear entertainment screen is truly impressive
- Estimated 305 miles of range
For decades, the BMW 7 Series has served as the pinnacle of the automaker's sedan lineup. The current iteration of this ultra-luxe flagship offers a diverse range of powertrains. The most fuel-efficient is the 745e xDrive, which pairs a turbocharged inline-six with a plug-in hybrid component. However, to date, there have been no fully electric versions to compete with the Mercedes-Benz EQS, Porsche Taycan or Tesla Model S.
That will change soon, as evidenced by a new vehicle called the i7 that BMW is teasing on its website. Here's everything we know about the upcoming electric equivalent of the 7 Series.
Love it or hate it; the massive "dual kidney" front grille is hard to mistake for anything but a BMW. The teaser images and video the automaker have shown all highlight (literally) the pair of large grilles — which are likely decorative, as EVs have no need for such massive air intakes (maw). Flanking the maw are some absolutely swanky-looking headlights. BMW says the available Crystal Headlights are made out of actual crystal. They're thinner than the lights found on the current 7 Series and appear to resemble the ones we've seen on the iX SUV.
For now, the i7's cabin is just as mysterious as its exterior design, but we do know that it will be the first BMW to feature the Interaction Bar.
BMW describes this as "[...] part of the ambient lighting and also features integrated control buttons."
The included image shows a small screen with a slider with a "0" on one side and a "1" on the other, indicating this could be a one-stop brightness adjuster for the ambient lighting system.
Then, there's the back-seat screen. First shown at CES® 2022, the 31-inch display features some impressive stats: a 5G connection for streaming content, 8K resolution, and integration with the car's sound system. If it works exactly as the model debuted at CES, the rear privacy shades will be drawn as the screen deploys from its resting spot in the headliner.
The first i7 variant to market will likely be the recently unveiled xDrive60. If the i7 follows the same naming convention as the iX SUV, then it may sport the same powertrain as the iX M60: a dual-motor setup with 532 hp and 749 lb-ft of torque. A launch mode boosts power to 610 hp and 811 lb-ft of torque, which would be more than enough for an executive sedan. Though BMW hasn't confirmed battery size, the automaker says the i7 is estimated to have an electric range of 305 miles.
An impressive array of luxury and tech features will give the BMW i7 the ammo it needs to challenge other high-end EVs. Look for the wraps to come off in the very near future.