For Sale By:Dealer
Interior Color: Tan
Sub Model: M6
Warranty: Vehicle does NOT have an existing warranty
Exterior Color: Red
Transmission Type: Manual
Knoxville, Tennessee, United States
Ladies and gentlemen, Bimmerphiles and automotive voyeurs of all stripes: here is your next-generation BMW 7 Series. Captured in photographs for the first time ever while doing a spot of cold-weather testing in Sweden, this newly slim 7er will most likely debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2015 and launch in the 2016 model year.
Sources indicate that BMW is targeting a much lighter curb weight for the 7 Series, and will use learnings gained with the i3 and i8 development to add carbon fiber-reinforced plastics in the construction. In return we'd expect the new model - which uses the internal model designation "G11" - to offer improvements in handling, acceleration and fuel economy. As with the current 7 Series lineup, expect the engine range to include turbocharged inline-six engines, one or more V8s and a V12 option.
It's fair to say that, with the car's debut still years down the road, that BMW will work to launch with an impressive suite of in-car technology, too. A completely new version of iDrive shouldn't be ruled out. These shots mark the beginning of a long journey to 2015, and we expect to have loads more information to share in the coming months and years, so stay tuned.
Even workaday cars are so capable now that even most auto scribes don't truly find out about a car's limits until a professional driver shows them what they are. It's the same with a vehicle's suite of features and the technology inside - there's so much of it that most people will have no idea what their cars can offer them. BMW is the latest company to make a personal effort to change that, introducing "young, tech-savvy employees" to dealerships as part of its "BMW Genius Everywhere" initiative.
Having no part in the actual sale of a vehicle, a BMW Genius is present on the showroom floor only to answer questions about the company's products and their features. If the customer decides to buy, he is transferred to a salesperson. A pilot program in the UK proved its effectiveness, it will now be rolled out across Europe and then come to the United States toward the end of this year in time for the launch of the i3. Details are still being worked out, but each BMW dealer will have at least one Genius.
For assistance that doesn't require visiting the auto mall, BMW is also putting vehicle and feature tutorials on its US website to "make our knowledge about our brand more interesting and more accessible to the consumer." They will appear online sometime in the latter half of the year, and will also be bundled into iPhone and iPad apps.
So why would BMW choose July 2 to release a retrospective on the 8 Series? Could it have something to do with the recent unveiling of the Pininfarina Gran Lusso Coupe concept, another sleek, B-pillarless V12 two-door, at this year's Villa d'Este? We have no idea, but the timing is likely coincidental.
This three-minute look at the 8 Series talks to Niels Hamann, who was smitten with the long-hooded coupe when it appeared in 1989 and finally bought one in 2004. Hamann also happens to be a project manager at BMW, and that came in handy when he wrote a book detailing every aspect of what was BMW's flagship for ten years but to the chagrin of many only managed one generation.
While we wait for the next clue about the Gran Lusso - 8 Series connection, check out the video below.