BMW i7 review

Headlining the introduction of an all-new BMW 7 Series is the new i7 model.

Pros: luxurious interior, overall performance 

Cons: not that involving to drive, styling is polarising

The BMW i7 is the most luxurious example of electrification from the German marque to date. A large battery and powerful electric motors work harmoniously with an advanced air suspension setup to deliver an automotive experience that is almost peerless. 

BMW i7 Design  

Taking some of BMW's more recent designs into account the i7 isn't the most divisive, but it's far from being classically beautiful. Most prominent are the company's signature kidney grilles on the front, though they’re not really needed for cooling in this fully electric model. That doesn't stop BMW from making them a statement piece and illuminating their outline to ensure nobody mistakes this car for anything else. 

The split headlight layout is a style that BMW now uses across its luxury models, including the updated X7 and forthcoming XM performance SUV. Specification plays a bigger role in how the i7 looks. The optional M Sport upgrade means a noticeably different bumper on the front, which change the car's face. Customisation will also rise to a new level for BMW as the i7 will be the first model available from the factory with a two-tone paint scheme. 

The i7 sticks to the typical three-box saloon silhouette, and unlike the previous generation 7 Series, only one length is now available. At 5.3 metres long, it isn't lacking in presence, while its door handles are recessed into the bodywork to minimise the drag it creates as it moves through the air. Fittingly for a modern electric flagship, technology is abundant and extends to the doors, which can optionally be automated, allowing owners to open and close them at the touch of a button or remotely via their smartphone. 

BMW i7 Interior 

Luxury abounds inside the BMW i7, from the sumptuous driver's seat to the rotary controller for the infotainment system that appears as if crafted from crystal. The crystalline look extends to the 'Interaction Bar' that spans the dashboard fascia and into the front doors. Assorted colours can dynamically appear on the bar, depending on the drive mode selection or even the activation of the hazard lights. The Curved Display that BMW employs for the dashboard comprises a dual-screen layout with a 12.3-inch instrument display and a 14.9-inch touchscreen.

For the authentic i7 experience you need to move to the rear seats. Headroom and legroom are abundant for passengers to stretch out and relax. There’s a five-inch touchscreen integrated into the armrest of each back door for passengers to adjust everything from their seat position to the cabin temperature. Perhaps the most impressive feature is the option of a 31-inch 8K display that electrically lowers from the roof to give those in the rear seats a cinema-like experience as they travel. 

BMW i7 Performance & Drive 

Powering the BMW i7 is a 101kWh battery that feeds a pair of electric motors, one on each axle, giving it total maximum outputs of 544hp and 745Nm. That all-wheel-drive transmission can accelerate the BMW to 100km/h in only 4.7 seconds from a standstill and onto a top speed of 240km/h. Just as important to some will be the driving range, which BMW states is between 591- and 625 kilometres in WLTP conditions. 

Delivery of that power is impressively smooth, enabling the i7 to glide along with the kind of refinement expected of such a car. While it can surge forward with seemingly little effort, its best performance comes when driving it in a more relaxed manner. The air suspension does a first-rate job at soaking up any bumps that come its way, and the 48-volt anti-roll system can keep the car level when cornering. 

A rear-wheel-steering setup helps to make the i7 feel smaller than its length would suggest by turning the rear wheels in the opposite direction to the fronts at low speed. That function reverses as speed increases to give a more direct feel when changing direction, though the steering lacks the sense of engagement that BMW provides in its smaller cars. 

BMW i7 Pricing 

Pricing for the BMW i7 starts at €135,731 for the Elegance specification, while the upgrade to the M Sport version increases the cost to €140,840. 

Carzone Verdict: 4/5 

The BMW i7 is a complete luxury car, and its electric powertrain only improves the driving experience. Its large battery provides more than adequate driving range for the average driver, and the degree of refinement it demonstrates on the move ensures it is one of the best cars in its class. 

Find BMW dealers Used BMW for sale