It has been known for some time that BMW is preparing an electric version of the next generation of the 7 Series, its flagship. The vehicle will be called i7 and should hit the market in 2022.
Now Oliver Zipse, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW, has even given some details of the new vehicle: “And I can officially say it today: our flagship BMW 7 Series will be one of the electric models we will manufacture in China. The next generation of the 7 Series will be available with four powertrain variants: gasoline, diesel, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric. All powertrains will be based on a single architecture. And the most powerful 7 Series will be fully electric!” This seems to confirm the rumors that the i7 with xDrive all-wheel drive will be around 650 hp of power.
The model will have batteries of between 80 kWh and 120 kWh, although for now, this data is purely speculative. These packs would allow it to reach a maximum autonomy of about 700 km under the WLTP approval cycle (a current Tesla Model S Long Range remains at 610 km WLTP). Therefore, the German saloon could exceed 600 km of autonomy in real conditions.
As for technology, the i7 will likely use all the seats that the iNEXT will debut in 2021, so it could be launched on the market with a level 3 autonomous driving system. Like the current model, it is expected for BMW to use carbon fiber and aluminum structural elements to reduce the overall weight of the package.