Is BMW Crazy For Turning The 7 Series Into A 4-Cylinder Plug-In Hybrid?

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One week it's a V12, the next a plug-in hybrid.

BMW just revealed the M760i, the most powerful 7 Series ever. Now the German luxury automaker is following that up with the most efficient 7 Series ever. While the 6.6-liter, 600 horsepower V12 in the M760i may be exciting, it doesn't really show that BMW is keeping up with the times. Today, carmakers are judged based on efficiency, not how big of a motor they can shoehorn into the engine bay. With that in mind, BMW has just revealed the first ever plug-in hybrid 7 Series. The 740e has been fully revealed prior to the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

The 740e lineup will consist of the 740e iPerformance, the 740Le iPerformance and the all-wheel drive 740Le xDrive iPerformance. All three derivatives will be powered by a TwinPower turbocharged four-cylinder engine mated to an electric motor. This combination will make 326 hp with an all-electric range of 25 miles for the 740e and 740Le iPerformance and 23 miles for the all-wheel drive model. The engine itself produces 258 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque allowing the hybrid 7 Series to accelerate to 62 mph in 5.5 to 5.7 seconds depending on the model. The plug-in 7 Series has a unique eDrive button on the center console that allows the driver to configure how the engine and hybrid system work together.

The 740e models will also feature a Driving Experience Control switch that changes the car to different driving modes consisting of Eco Pro, Comfort, Sport and the configurable Adaptive mode. You can charge the 9.2 kWh battery in less than four hours or under three hours when charged through a BMW i Wallbox. This is still a 7 Series so expect it to come loaded with safety and tech features. Prices have not been announced, but like all 7 Series versions, it will be a lot. Now we aren't really sure what the appeal of such an expensive plug-in hybrid is. If you can afford the car, can't you afford the gas? Apparently there are a lot of eco-friendly CEOs out there who like to help the environment, just not at the expense of comfort.

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