Increased hybridisation expected with 2018 BMW 7 Series facelift
Minor updates and technology boosts will likely be crowned by a growing hybrid line-up; new Chinese legislature a big factor
More hybrid variants of the BMW 7 Series luxury saloon are expected to be launched when the model is facelifted next year.
The Audi A8 and Mercedes-Benz S-Class rival is currently offered with just one hybrid drivetrain, as the 740e, but ever-tightening global legislation has encouraged BMW to expand its electrified line-up.
China is BMW’s biggest market and the 7 Series is particularly well suited to the high demand for luxury vehicles there. But new legislation will require 8% of each car brand’s Chinese sales to be for ‘new energy vehicles’, which includes hybrids and electric vehicles, from 2019.
Sources therefore predict the addition of another hybrid variant, as well as improvements in the existing 740e model, to boost 7 Series demand in what is the world’s biggest car market.
A less significant change is expected with the car’s autonomous technology. BMW’s next major improvements in driverless systems won’t come until the launch of the iNext in 2021, so the 7 Series‘ adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, autonomous emergency braking and collision avoidance systems are expected to be enhanced rather than overhauled.
No arrival date for the facelifted 7 Series has yet been revealed, but the model’s relevance to China suggests the Beijing motor show in April 2018 is a probable venue for its public debut.
Source: Autocar Online