Next-gen 7-Series’ electric version spotted

The prototype for BMW’s 7-Series Next-Generation has been seen again.

The tester was intended for the battery-electric version. This variant is likely to include some distinctive styling elements that are not found in the 7-Series line-up, including a sealed-off grille. The prototype may have an unusual name such as “i7”. Another photo shows prototypes that have internal-combustion engine.

2023 BMW i7 (7-Series) spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2023 BMW i7 (7-Series) spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Camouflage equipment is used to conceal the real shape of the vehicle, especially around the Cpillar. This helps to cover the BMW Hofmeister kink. Additionally, each front-facing camera can be mounted to the fenders.

New spy images show that the grille is true to its design, which is similar to the design of the recently released iX SUV. The Protruding Sharknose design appears to be inspired from the Pininfarina Gran Lusso Coupe concept.

2023 BMW i7 spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2023 BMW i7 spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

This design will be more grandiose and dynamic than current G11 7 Series.

A new version of 7-Series’ current CLAR platform will underpin the vehicle. It is flexible enough for multiple powertrain types. BMW will utilize its fifth-generation batteries and the same electric powertrain technology that was used last year to make the iX3 cross-country crossover electric.

BMW fifth-generation EV technology

BMW’s fifth-generation electric vehicle technology

It supports up to 120kilowatt-hours capacity batteries, which is enough to cover a distance of approximately 400 miles. Northvolt, Samsung SDI, and CATL are BMW’s partners in battery technology.

Module drive units, which combine the motor, transmission, and power control unit within a single housing will power the powertrain. The 5-Series demonstrator BMW revealed a few years ago featured three of these drives units that combined produce more than 720 horsepower. Two of them powered the rear wheels separately, which allows for torque vectoring control and the other powered the front two. By simply adding powertrain modules, BMW can increase or decrease power output to create all-wheel-drive capabilities for each model. The iX has two drive units that produce approximately 500 hp.

BMW fifth-generation motor system

BMW Fifth Generation Motor System

The next generation 7-Series will also have mild-hybrid powertrains and plug-in hybrids. Although a V-8 with mild-hybrid configuration seems certain, the jury is yet to decide if a V-12 will be available. According to a BMW senior executive, the company has no plans of abandoning the big engine.

The next-generation 7-Series should arrive in 2022, as a model 2023. The launch of the battery-electric I7 is expected to be near.

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Author: Brandon Park