The next generation of BMW's 7 Series luxury sedan is imminent, and it will spawn a fully electric variant called the i7. On Tuesday BMW released the first images of a camouflaged i7 prototype undergoing winter testing in Sweden near the Arctic Circle, giving us a good idea of what to expect from this flagship EV.
Like the upcoming 7 Series, the i7 will ride on the latest version of BMW's CLAR platform, which has been around since the current 7 Series first debuted in 2015. The i7 will share its battery technology and electric motors with the iX SUV, which means it should have a range of around 300 miles and over 500 horsepower. There will likely be a base model with rear-wheel drive and a more powerful AWD version, and from the images it seems like the i7 will have rear-wheel steering.
Despite the funky Mondrian-esque camo wrap, we can still glean a lot about the i7's design from these photos. Its overall shape is similar to the existing 7 Series, but it has some crisper edges and surfacing similar to that of the iX. There are flush door handles, huge blocked-off kidney "grilles" and the split headlight setup seen on the Concept XM that debuted earlier this week. In terms of how it'll deviate from the regular 7 Series, look to the i4, which is basically a 4 Series Gran Coupe with a blocked-off grille and different bumpers. No interior photos were released, but expect a large curved display, loads of fancy materials and supremely comfy seats.
BMW says the i7 will debut at some point in 2022. Given that BMW is showing off these prototype images before talking about the regular 7 Series at all, it seems that the i7 will be revealed before its gas-powered sibling. Expect a price tag of over $100,000 to start, putting the i7 squarely up against the Mercedes-Benz EQS.