Here it is – the first official communication from BMW about the all electric BMW i7. This of course is considered a tease to prep us for what’s coming. And while there’s not a lot of details in the release, you come away with the distinct impression that this new electric 7 Series will be forged on the same principles as the petrol powered on – which is also coming. That’s to say luxury, performance and design fitting at the top of the BMW range.
It’s also worth noting that this will be the second car in the BMW range that will have both a ICE and electric models based on the same chassis. That strategy was called risky at the time of its announcement as both VW and Mercedes have gone with bespoke electric architecture. Will it hurt the i7 or help BMW produce better, more consistent products? Time will tell.
Read on for the first official look at the new BMW i7.
OFFICIAL RELEASE – THE BMW I7 PREVIEW
With the consistent expansion of its range to further vehicle segments, the BMW Group is pushing ahead with the transformation to electric mobility. During the forthcoming year, the Munich-based premium automobile manufacturer will already present the world’s first all-electric luxury sedan – the BMW i7. Within the framework of its series development process, the BMW i7 is currently undergoing driving dynamics testing on the premises of the BMW Group winter test centre in Arjeplog, Sweden. There, just a few kilometres away from the Arctic Circle, test engineers find the frozen surfaces and snow-covered roads offering the ideal preconditions for the integrated application of all drive and suspension systems. With the test programme held in the biting cold, they pave the way to a new interpretation of luxury driving pleasure. For the first time, it will be possible to experience a maximum in characteristic BMW dynamics, comfort and supremacy in the luxury class with absolutely zero local emissions.
The suspension components, steering and braking systems as well as driving dynamics and vehicle stability systems developed for the future generation of the BMW 7 Series are designed to raise the balance between sportiness and ride comfort so typical of the brand’s luxury sedans to the next level. This also includes performance-oriented tuning of the wheel suspension, springs, dampers and various regulating systems to match the various different drive types. They all undergo intensive testing in Arjeplog under extreme climate conditions.
In Lapland’s winter landscape, the test engineers find the perfect preconditions for this. During test drives around the snow-covered roads around Arjeplog, they are able to test and optimise all functions under extremely challenging conditions in order to achieve an absolutely harmonious and BMW-typical driving experience. Moreover, they make use of test surfaces on frozen lakes with their low road friction coefficient in order to achieve particularly fine tuning of suspension control systems. The steering application undergoes meticulous tuning as do the numerous functions of the Dynamic Stability Control system (DSC) and the accurately regulated interaction between friction brake and deceleration by means of energy recuperation.
The winter programme also focuses in particular on the components of the all-electric drive system. The BMW i7’s electric drive, high-voltage battery, power electronics and charging technology all originate from the fifth generation of BMW eDrive technology, which already provides for sustainable driving pleasure in the BMW iX. Above all, it is the motor, the battery and the temperature control system of the BMW i7 that prove their high level of maturity in extreme sub-zero temperatures in the north of Sweden.
With the BMW i7, the brand’s current model offensive in the luxury segment is being continued in a particularly progressive way. For the first time, it is possible to experience a luxury sedan that is characterised by elegance, ride comfort and supremacy without restriction and in conjunction with a purely electric drive system. The BMW i7 is based on the same vehicle concept as all further model variants of the BMW 7 Series. This integrated development also guarantees locally emission-free driving with the characteristic combination of both sporty and comfort-oriented handling properties along with the exclusive spaciousness of a BMW luxury sedan.