1 Apr 2009
BMW Australia overhauled its 7 Series limousine line-up with the new, fifth-generation, F01 and F02 (long-wheelbase) models, in April 2009.
More performance, improved economy, lower emissions, better safety and a rise in value for money underline the BMW flagship.
Besides the expected six-cylinder and V8 petrol engines, the Mk5 Seven introduced the range’s first diesel variant, the 730d, in the middle of that year.
The base petrol model remains the 740i, now delivering a 240kW/450Nm 3.0-litre twin-turbo six that majors in fuel economy as well as performance.
With 300kW of power and 600Nm of torque from its twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 (also seen in the X6), the 750i not only eclipses the previous 270kW/490Nm 4.8-litre ‘atmo’ V8 but accelerates faster than the discontinued 6.0-litre V12-engined model.
Meanwhile the 730d is only be available in standard wheelbase guise and will use the same 3.0-litre twin-turbo alloy six-cylinder engine as the 330d sedan, with third-generation direct injection and variable turbo geometry.
It produces 180kW at 4000rpm and 540Nm at between 1750-3000rpm, pushing the 730d to 100km/h in 7.2 seconds – only three-tenths slower than the superseded petrol V8-engined 740i – while returning average fuel consumption of just 7.2L/100km and CO2 emissions of 192g/km.
Like the rest of the 7 Series range, the diesel model has a six-speed automatic transmission specified as standard, along with a full complement of airbags and electronic driver aids, a head-up display for the instruments, bi-Xenon headlights with daytime running function and various adaptive features, a rear-view camera, cruise control with brake function, dynamic damper control, 18-inch alloy wheels, ventilated front seats, premium leather upholstery, four-zone climate control, soft-close doors and boot, GPS with 10.2-inch screen, a TV receiver, voice recognition and a multi-speaker six-stack DVD changer.
All 7 Series models feature weight- saving alloy roof and doors (saving 7kg and 22kg respectively), helping to make them up to 40kg lighter than the previous generation, and feature BMW’s ‘Brake Energy Regeneration’ system, which the company claims is a first for a large sedan in Australia.
Despite the upper-large luxury segment having taken a beating in the previous few years, BMW tried to stem the tide with an update to the 7 Series in early 2013.
Slight cosmetic changes included a revised kidney grille, world-first adaptive LED headlights with anti-dazzle technology, and a redesigned lower bumper with three air openings instead of one.
BMW said it had reduced road noise with extra sound-deadening in the B and C pillars, skirts and boot, along with more streamline exterior mirrors that included the side indicator lights.
At the time of release, BMW claimed its revised six-cylinder 3.0-litre diesel 730d base model was the most efficient car in its class, using just 5.6L/100km and emitting 148 grams of CO2 per kilometre.
BMW replaced the old six-speed transmission across the range with a new eight-speed unit that was found in the previous 760i flagship V12 model only.
Performance and efficiency gains were also found across the range, as well as safety and equipment upgrades.