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BMW facelifts the 7-Series

A game of spot the difference...

BMW has revealed a mid-life refresh for the 2013 7-Series, though you’d be hard pressed to notice out on the road. There are more changes under the skin though.

Starting with the exterior, the large saloon now features full-LED headlights with hallmark BMW halo rings, kidney grille with nine slats (instead of 12), a slightly more modern front bumper design, new side mirror indicators and an every so slightly redesigned rear bumper.

Inside, the interior receives newly designed leather seats, additional soundproofing and an optional Rear Seat Entertainment package which delivers 1,200-watts through a Bang & Olufsen Surround Sound System with 16 speakers. The Entertainment package also features a new 9.2-inch flatscreen monitor and an illuminated centre speaker which retracts into the instrument panel. Up front, the central control display uses a 10.25-inch screen and features new black-panel technology with high-resolution 3D graphics.

New to the 7-Series engine line-up is the new turbo 6-cylinder diesel engine from the M-Performance X5, X6 and 5_Series ‘50d’ models, which can be found in the BMW 750d xDrive. Billed as the world's most powerful 6-cylinder in-line diesel engine, the 3.0-litre features three turbochargers and produces a maximum output of 375 bhp and 546 lb/ft of torque. The 750d xDrive sprints from 0 to 62 mph in 4.9 seconds while achieving 44.1 mpg. CO2 emissions are 169 g/km. Very impressive figures for such a large car.

Also new is the BMW ActiveHybrid 7 in its second generation hybrid drive system which now uses a turbo 3.0-litre in-line 6-cylinder petrol engine which produces 315 bhp, instead of the 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 engine used in the first version. Other hybrid components include the 54 bhp synchronous electric motor, the hybrid-spec eight-speed automatic transmission, a lithium-ion high-performance battery and power electronics underpinning Brake Energy Regeneration and Hybrid Start Stop function. With a combined power output of 349 bhp and peak torque of 369 lb-ft, the new ActiveHybrid 7 accelerates from 0 to 62 mph in just 5.7 seconds while achieving an average fuel economy of 41.5 mpg and CO2 emissions of 158 g/km.

These numbers would seem impressive in isolation, but unless you really hated diesel engines, the 750d makes much more sense as the fuel economy will be a sustained 40+ mpg instead of the skewed figures given by Hybrids.

The facelifted BMW 7-Series goes on sale later this year.

Images and video courtesy of BMW

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About Tim Oldland

Contributing Editor - Long time petrolhead, automotive design engineer and journalist. Also Social Media Manager for the ecurie25 Group - www.ecurie25.com Tim has worked in the automotive sector for many years, but has been a fan of anything with 2 or 4... read more