RE: BMW 750i M Sport: Driven

RE: BMW 750i M Sport: Driven

Sunday 19th May

BMW 750i M Sport: Driven

Facelifted 7 gains BMW's twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 for the first time - and is all the better for it



Yes, okay, the kidney grilles. They're enormous, unmissable and divisive. Can we leave it at that? Because the facelifted BMW 7 Series can also be had with something new behind those nostrils: a twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8. We know this engine from various applications, not least the M5, and with 530hp in this guise it has the potential to convert the big Bavarian saloon from comfortable back-seat rider to ultra-luxury driver's machine - something we've always thought the G11 needed if it was to offer a proper contrast with the super-svelte S-Class.

Grilles aside, the new styling effort arguably helps the BMW's cause. It's sharper and more aggressive for it; BMW says the changes have helped to improve aerodynamics and reduce wind noise, too. But what lies beneath is very much mid-life facelift in nature, the chassis still comprised of the same two-axle air suspension setup with active anti-roll stabilisation and all-wheel drive. On the 750i, the wheels are of 20-inch as standard and the rear tyres have a wider 275mm width to the fronts' 245mm, so the 750i appears to have a sportier stance. But by-and-large, the biggest technical alteration is the introduction of the motor itself.

Well, it is from the PH perspective, anyway. For everyone else, the 2019 car's new cabin might be an equally desirable factor - so let's run through the basics quickly, shall we? See the screens in the dash - they come as part of BMW's 7.0 operating system that runs with a 12.3-inch instrument cluster and 10.25 centre console touchscreen, offering what the company claims is the most customisable interface yet fitted to a Beemer. It includes the firm's new voice command tech that can be activated by saying "Hey BMW", while in the back are a pair of 1080 pixel screens for passengers, a centre console tablet and seats that recline like a business class seat. As a place to spend time, the new 7 builds on its already impressive predecessor, although it still can't match the S-Class for outright ostentatiousness. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing.


Anyway, we're here to drive. The 7 pulls away smoothly and with only a hint of the 4.4-litre's gravelly low-rev tone. There's nothing gravelly about the ride quality; think extremely supple building into genuine smoothness at speed. The motor and gearbox work in tandem to maximise low rev torque and there's so little wind and road noise that the national speed limit feels achingly slow. Left to its own devices, the 7 is bonafide luxury cruiser - only the effortlessness of the V8 suggests there might be something lurking beneath the millpond.

Press the centre console's Sport button and the eight cylinder's volume raises very slightly, with a gruff puff added to every upshift. Even so, it's background stuff. The ride, too, stays remarkably comfortable and there's barely a hint of added stiffness to the rebound rates. But steer the car into a corner with intent and the nose reacts more keenly while the body stays flat. There's none of the S-Class's Magic Ride counter lean, but rather the feeling that there's clever reactive damping going on to keep body control in check, no matter how hard you try to unsettle it. It does all this while remaining supple and composed over bumps; the result of the air suspension's proactive front-facing camera. Coupled with the traction enabled by xDrive hardware, the 7 can carry immense speed with what seems in the cabin like little fuss.


If you really go looking for it on a B road, the are hints of broader adjustability in the chassis; one crested corner had the car's rear kicking out of line by a few centimetres. But that's more a combination of circumstances rather than evidence of throttle-actuated oversteer because it wasn't repeated anywhere else. The nose is definitely the dominate axle, which is probably as 7 Series owners prefer. Still, it has an advantage over the resolutely neutral S-Class - albeit on a minuscule scale.

It's shame then that the 750i's standard-fit variable ratio steering is so numb, because a more communicative rack might have been the key to making it more rewarding to pedal. The four-wheel-steer-enhanced reactivity somewhat masks the pitfalls, but when you're really on it and expecting some proper feedback, there's nothing but a little bit of load-related weight to satisfy your nerves.

Still, the 750i's limitations feel self-imposed: it remains a luxe-barge first and foremost and therefore only interested in relaying a limited idea of what the road surface is actually like. A rear-wheel drive model with more exciting - but ultimately you get what most buyers are surely paying for: a very fast, immensely capable limo capable of shrinking a continent into manageable chunks while it serves up considerable space - and a lot of screens - to everyone on board. Its ghostly, mammoth-sized performance is merely the icing on the USP cake. And probably worthy of the badge on its nose.


SPECIFICATIONS - BMW 750I XDRIVE M SPORT
Engine:
4,395cc, V8, petrol
Transmission: eight-speed automatic, all-wheel drive
Power (hp): 530@5,500rpm
Torque (lb ft): 553@1,800rpm
0-62mph: 4.7sec
Top Speed: 155mph (limited)
Weight: 2,040kg
MPG: 34.9
CO2: 217g/km
Price: £87,875










 

Author
Discussion

mersontheperson

Original Poster:

130 posts

107 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
No, sorry I can’t get past hat face

Edited by mersontheperson on Sunday 19th May 07:20

2 GKC

502 posts

47 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
Need to bring back the old speedo and rev counter. Don’t like those dials at all

sparks_E46

10,347 posts

155 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
That grill though.

okenemem

414 posts

136 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
that nose

cerb4.5lee

11,573 posts

122 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
2 GKC said:
Need to bring back the old speedo and rev counter. Don’t like those dials at all
I can't seem to warm to them either.
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LexyLex

207 posts

2 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
Ignoring the grills and dial - that's a decent engine in that thing. BMW offer this in 740i, 750 and 760. We've not had it so good in a long time.

panholio

634 posts

90 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
I like everything about that, but I’m really struggling with the nose. Maybe it will become more normal, but you don’t see an awful lot of these about, so it’ll always be an unpleasant shock.

cerb4.5lee

11,573 posts

122 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
I think that if they made the grills smaller it wouldn't look too bad overall. I quite like the shape in that dark colour and this will be a seriously rare car.

80sMatchbox

3,674 posts

118 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all

No one will talk about the grills after asking people not to. That's how it always works. Well played.

This is definitely the salad dodger 7 series with that weight to carry around but with the heart and lung of an athlete .

belleair302

6,073 posts

149 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
No daft money as a purchase but what happens when you spend money on the options list. Alas these new grills are here to stay on all cars, so we will have to get used to them. Would I stump up the money to buy, PCP or anything else, hmm depends upon what Alpina can do with the same car.

Compared to the Lexus or Audi I think the 7 Series is a decent improvement, as compared to the S Class I am not sure but will guarantee it is a better drive as BMW's usually are.

Would anybody buy one over a Panamera or an upmarket SUV is the question?

cerb4.5lee

11,573 posts

122 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
belleair302 said:
Would anybody buy one over a Panamera or an upmarket SUV is the question?
Saloons do seem to be a dying breed now that SUV's have become so fashionable for sure.

nicfaz

258 posts

172 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
They are dying breed because everyone is buying a Tesla model S instead, if my local area is anything to go by. I can see why too - even though the BMW will be a nicer place to sit, it screams absurd consumption with styling to match. The model S will cost peanuts to run and have markedly better real-world performance.

LexyLex

207 posts

2 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
belleair302 said:
Would anybody buy one over a Panamera or an upmarket SUV is the question?
A few do - a lot don't like SUVs (I don't). A Panamera is a very exciting option but this is a more luxurious one - a good compromise between an S and a Panamera.

You do see a few of these 7's around. Not a common car but more around than a Panamera.

Yet to see a new shape LS outside of a Lexus dealer - I suspect the hybrid only option might deter buyers. Out my way (rural Aberdeenshire) you see many more Range Rovers than anything and barely a Tesla.

The Tesla is an amazing car but your driving habits/thought process has to fit around the electric car ethos.

cjcor

65 posts

179 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
I think this particular colour combination looks great - the face isnt inappropriate to my eyes.

Wills2

15,648 posts

117 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
Fabulous thing, I went for a blast yesterday in the dales in my 7 series (not a 750i sadly) but they are great cars, the 0-62 time is incorrect as quoted in the article BMW quote 4.0secs to 62mph.





Edited by Wills2 on Sunday 19th May 10:52

ruggedscotty

1,438 posts

151 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
the dials are hideous....

but I suppose these are a step toward preparation for going electric. no need for dials, just a speed and power read out....

petemurphy

5,258 posts

125 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all

saw this car showing off near me a few days ago - looked pretty good tbh but i hate bmw interiors at the moment

rare6499

250 posts

81 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
Don’t get this fascination with cheap TFT screen dials in luxury cars. They aren’t luxury at all. I get the benefits but what’s luxury about a screen you will soon share with a 1 series?

Why can’t we get some detailed dials that are made out of real materials. Guess I’m stuck in the past.

robsprocket

42 posts

120 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
With that front end this must be one of those dodge Chinese 'luxury' brand copies right?

Jag_NE

1,660 posts

42 months

Sunday 19th May
quotequote all
nicfaz said:
They are dying breed because everyone is buying a Tesla model S instead, if my local area is anything to go by. I can see why too - even though the BMW will be a nicer place to sit, it screams absurd consumption with styling to match. The model S will cost peanuts to run and have markedly better real-world performance.
Agree on both counts in terms of fuel economy and acceleration. The BMW will be markedly better in terms of drive and cabin quality though and at 0-60 in 4.0 it’s more than enough. I’ve been in a model S before it just doesn’t come close to the luxury feel of 7/S/A8 etc.