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2013 BMW 7-series comes with more power, features, cost

Mon, 23 Jul 2012

BMW released the details of the 2013 7-series sedan on Friday, saying that the entire 7-series line will offer more power, better fuel economy and more advanced features. And it all comes at a slightly higher cost.

The 740i and Li will now feature a version of BMW's stalwart, 3.0-liter TwinPower Turbo inline-six engine delivering 315 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission is standard across the entire 7-series range.

A selection of fuel-saving strategies will be employed including stop/start technology, regenerative braking and a driver selectable “eco” driving mode. EPA figures haven't been released yet, but BMW says the 740i showed improvements of about 20 percent on the European cycle.

The price for each new model will be about two grand more than that of the outgoing model. The BMW 740i will cost $74,195, while the 740Li will cost $78,195.

The new 750i gets the same 4.4-liter TwinPower turbocharged V8, this year with BMW's Valvetronic variable valve timing system. That engine is good for 445 hp, a 45-hp increase, and 480 lb-ft of torque. It also gets an eight-speed automatic, which helps the big sedan get to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds. Fuel consumption was reduced by 25 percent on the European cycle.

The 750i and the 750iL also get price increases of about $2,000, bringing their final cost to $87,195 and $90,895, respectively.

The 2013 ActiveHybrid 7 will be powered by the same inline-six found in the 740i. That engine will be coupled to a 55-hp synchronous electric motor and an eight-speed automatic transmission. Total system output will reach 349 hp and 367 lb-ft of torque. BMW claims a 0-to-60-mph time of 5.5 seconds.

The ActiveHybrid 7 features the aforementioned driver-selectable “Eco Pro” driving mode, with a coasting function and “Proactive Analysis,” which uses topography, speed limits, traffic and the navigation system to prime the hybrid components for maximum efficiency. For instance, BMW suggests, a longer downhill section could be used to charge the battery for a purely electric home stretch. The sedan can travel 2.5 miles on electric power, at up to 37 mph.

The 2013 BMW ActiveHybrid 7 will cost $84,895 including destination. That's $13,000 less than last year. The price break comes because the 2012 car used a V8, while the new car has the I6.

New features for the entire model line include standard auto start/stop and standard regenerative braking. “Eco Pro” mode is standard across the line. It modifies the powertrain management and settings for heating, air conditioning, seats heating and cooling and electric mirror heating for maximum efficiency.

Other notable features include computer-controlled rear steering, self-leveling air suspension, adaptive LED lights and a new sound system. The navigation system screen will make use of 3-D elements. A voice-controlled “Mobile Office suite” will have a dictation function and the ability to record voice memos. An enhanced radar cruise control system will follow traffic and apply brakes if necessary; BMW parking assistant will take over when moving into a parking spot; and—in a move right out of Ford's playbook—a waive of a foot under the rear bumper will open the trunk.

As for the high-performance Alpina B7, its new base price will be $128,495, and it will get a sportier version of the company's eight-speed transmission called Switch-Tronic.

By Jake Lingeman