First drives of the 2013 BMW 7 Series are starting to appear online. At the international press launch in St. Petersburg, Russia, the folks over at InsideLine jumped behind the wheel of the 750i facelifted model.
The new 2013 7 Series arrives in US BMW center showrooms in late summer 2012, except for the ActiveHybrid 7 which arrives in early fall. The short wheelbase 750i starts at $87,195, while the long wheelbase sells for $90,895.
The 2013 BMW 750i/Li also receive upgrades to their powertrain that enhance performance while improving efficiency. The 4.4-liter TwinPower Turbo V8 has been updated with Valvetronic, BMW’s throttle-less intake system. It works in concert with High-Precision Direct Injection and twin turbochargers, nestled on top of the engine, to deliver 445 horsepower, a 45 hp increase over its predecessor, and 480 lb-ft of torque, an increase of 30 lb-ft. This newly updated engine is mated to BMW’s 8-speed Steptronic automatic. Together, this combination yields even greater performance with a 0-60 time of 4.7 seconds (preliminary), while consuming significantly less fuel. US EPA mileage estimates are not yet available. However, in the EU test cycle, fuel consumption was reduced by an impressive 25 percent.
Here is an excerpt from the InsideLine review:
From Russia With Love
At first glance the “new” car looks disappointingly like a mild face-lift, some stretching of skin and tucking of folds transforming the 7 into nothing more than a tweaked version of its old self.
A more detailed look at the nose reveals that the face has undergone the biggest changes. The LED lights are indeed sharper and more dynamic, and you can even specify a system that takes the glare out of driving. Leave the lamps on full beam and the individual bulb unit can swivel to its heart’s content, dipping and turning for oncoming traffic and those ponderously holding you up in front. You’ll never have to reach for the high-beam stalk again. The new lights, of course, retain the signature corona rings as before, so you know it’s a BMW tailgating you on the highway in the dark.
The twin-kidney grille, another iconic marker of the brand remains, but even that has been updated. Before each side had 12 slats, but now there are only nine. And below the grilles the once rectangular air intake gains some larger outer sections, lowering the look of the nose and strengthening the visuals. There’s also a chrome strip along the trunk lid and turn signals integrated into the wing mirrors. The latter used to reside in a metal strip between the front quarter panel and door, but now there’s just a vacant filament of aluminum to remind you of the loss.
It’s what’s underneath the skin that really matters, though, and if you peel away the top layer you’ll find the most interesting advances for the 2013 BMW 750i. BMW claims it has never made so many changes underneath the metal of one of its cars during a midlife update.
The result is a car that is deceptively quick, accelerating from zero to 62 mph in only 4.8 seconds.
The chassis now benefits from new dampers and bushings, and the standard air suspension now features a self-leveling system across the rear axle. The result is a car that should corner flatter than before, and provide its occupants with a more comfortable ride — though the state of the test route roads didn’t help with matters of true assessment. We can say with certainty, however, that the heavy electric power steering requires more off-center effort than it should. Certainly anyone looking to maneuver their 7 with only two fingers will be sorely disappointed.