And it will probably arrive in 2021

BMW launched its first electrified models in 2013, when it introduced the all-electric i3 and the hybrid i8. However, the company’s move toward electrification has been extremely shy as far as core models go. But BMW is finally taking solid steps in that direction with an all-electric version of the 7 Series. The model was confirmed during a press conference held in Munich, Germany in March 2020; it will be part of the next-generation 7 Series.

The first BMW 7 Series with an electric drivetrain

A BMW i7 (7 Series EV) Is Officially in the Works!
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The BMW 7 Series is no stranger to electrification. BMW has been offering a hybrid model since 2010. The previous generation featured an ActiveHybrid version that originally combined a V-8 and an electric motor, but the V-8 was replaced with an inline-six in 2012. The ActiveHybrid was replaced by the 740e iPerformance when the 7 Series was redesigned in 2015.

The inline-six was ditched in favor for a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Paired to an electric motor, it generates 322 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque.

The next-gen 7 Series will continue to offer a hybrid drivetrain, but it will be the first to also offer an all-electric variant. The powertrain will be shared with the i4 and iNext, two vehicles that will debut in 2021. Rumor has it BMW will offer two battery packs. The base model will feature an 80-kWh battery, while the range-topping version will include a 120-kWh stack. The latter could offer as much as 600 km (384 miles) of range on the WLTP cycle.

There’s no official word yet on whether it will be called the i7.

The next BMW 7 Series will ditch V-8 and V-12 engines

2020 BMW 7 Series Exterior
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While it will offer hybrid and electric versions, the next-generation 7 Series will still include gasoline and diesel engines. However, BMW will drop the V-8 and the V-12 powerplants. This means that the big sedan will remain restricted to four- and six-cylinder units. The powerful V-8 and V-12 models will probably be replaced by high-performance hybrids powered by inline-six engines and electric motors.

The next-gen BMW 7 Series is still a couple of years away

2020 BMW 7 Series Exterior
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There’s no official word as to when the next-gen luxury sedan will arrive, but given that the current model dates back to 2015, the new 7 Series won’t be here sooner than 2021. The last three generations had a life cycle of around seven years, so the G11 model could also hang around for a similar period. So expect an unveiling in the second half of 2021 for the 2022 model year.

Source: BMW Blog

Ciprian Florea
Senior Editor and Supercar Expert - ciprian@topspeed.com
Ciprian's passion for everything with four wheels (and more) started back when he was just a little boy, and the Lamborghini Countach was still the coolest car poster you could hang on your wall. Ciprian's career as a journalist began long before earning a Bachelor's degree, but it was only after graduating that his love for cars became a profession.  Read More
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