BMW’s i7 May Headline but Next Year’s PHEVs Most Anticipated

Just because BMW has used its all-electric i7 to spearhead the seventh generation of its executive luxury high speed cruiser 7 Series, doesn’t mean ICE is already old hat.

That’s because the automaker will be bringing two new plug-in hybrid variants to market for 2023 for the first time in the autobahn commuter’s favorite motor. It is being deployed in both the new BMW 750e xDrive and a BMW M car, the BMW M760e xDrive.

The PHEV models will use an eight-speed Steptronic transmission that is making its global debut and is unique in this segment. A permanently engaged synchronous motor with a nominal output of 196bhp has been installed there together with the power electronics.

The new electric drive unit teams up with a six-cylinder in-line gasoline engine and BMW xDrive intelligent all-wheel drive in both models. Together the system in the BMW M760e xDrive claims 567bhp and peak torque of 590ft-lbs with just 25g/km of CO2. Meanwhile, the new BMW 750e xDrive posts figures of 486bhp and 516ft-lbs of torque with WLTP rating of 22g/km of CO2. Both models claim an all-electric drive range of 50 miles making them compliant with many zero-emission inner city environments in Europe.

The high-voltage batteries in the PHEVs can store 18.7 kWh of usable energy, an increase of more than 50% compared with the preceding generation. At the same time, maximum charging capacity has climbed from 3.7 kW to 7.4 kW, enabling the high-voltage battery to be fully recharged from empty in less than three hours. When hooked up to a conventional domestic power socket, a full vehicle charge is completed in around nine hours. There will also be another BEV  to join the BMW 7 Series line-up in the shape of the BMW i7 M70 xDrive flagship which is set to arrive later in 2023. With output expected to reach 655bhp.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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