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Roadshow Video Reviews
2009 BMW 750 LiThe big beemer has a lot tech for a lot of cash.
[Music] ^M00:00:02 >> BMW has reworked their big flag ship, the 750. Let's take a run in the long wheel base version and let the tech just wash over us. ^M00:00:09 [ Music ] ^M00:00:12 >> The navigation system and everything else is controlled by the new iDrive, which we still are getting on our knees and kissing the earth for, because it's so much more logical, so much more human-friendly than that load of crap that they had for years, the original iDrive. You got a nice logical stacked menu. Imagine that. Kind of like other electronic products in the world. Here's an nav screen. That's a 3 D view right there. You've also got the more traditional straight up or direction of travel north view. All of this, by the way, is handled by this controller here, the new iDrive center, which is more than just a jog, click, and push nob, you've got lots of dedicated buttons, which BMW didn't do much before. And that nav is standard on this car, at a car this level you expect it would be -- as is live traffic, which is not tied to having to have satellite radio. We have the premium sound system here. Everything just gets better. 600 Watts. 9 channels of amplification, 16 speakers, 2 sub woofers, still. Which brings us to our other option, which is the new rear seat entertainment system on the 7. We have that here. Dual 8-inch displays on the backs of the seats, not on the head rest, but actually on the back right there, really -- really done factory style. Couple of interesting options, small ones at that. Something called smart phone integration will do a more elaborate job of connecting your smart phone cradle based here in the center console, or go for the iPhone cradle for, like, a paltry 175. You'll end up with a place you can actually doc your iPhone, it will get you charging, and streaming music off your iPhone. Also note in the console here this is our iPod adapter because it's USB and aux jack combined. That's how BMW does it. But notice this, that's not the USB drive you use to transfer music from your USB thumb drive into the 12 gig hard drive. That is inexplicably located way the hell over there, where you can't possibly get to it without booking a flight. Oh, by the way, this iDrive control center, and I believe these button ease all along here, we have what's called the ceramic controls package. Yeah, I laughed too. Apparently those are ceramic finish buttons. Really? Right by that is your all electronic shifter. You're not moving any greasy linkages when you pull this thing around. Reverse, neutral, drive are all in a line. And when you come over here on the left side you've got your shiftable gauge, your manual, slash, sport mode where you can go forward into down shift, back for an up shift. Here's a crowd pleaser. Little half moon over the road. Hit that, and it turns the screen into a night vision camera with infrared. Now this car has got a camera package that I think is the only one of its kind in the industry. The camera package includes your usually back up camera like you see here. Then you've got this one up here. The real crowd pleaser for the camera package is the front cameras. Up in the very front end of the fender, slash, bumper, where they meet at the corner, you've got side firing cameras. We haven't seen anything like this since a Rolls Royce we drove a couple of years ago. Our car also has the ala cart head up display, which is one of the brightest in the business, I think. And you'll get things like navigation instructions, your speed, vehicle status messages can show up there as well. Now up here in the engine bay we're reminded that BMW's model names used to tell you what the displacement of the car was. But not any more. This 750 does not have a 5 liter, it's got a 4 liter. Because a couple of years ago BMW announced as part of their efficiency vision they're not going to make bigger and bigger engines to get more power. They're going to use technology to ring motor out of smaller displacements. So here's a 4 liter V8, but with twin turbos to get bigger displacement power out of a smaller breather. 400 horse power, 450 foot pounds of torque. Nice numbers. 1422 are your EPA estimates, and that also avoids the gas guzzler tax. All the while, moving this big boy from 0 to 60 in about five seconds and just a little bit more. Pretty good. On the road I smell a rat. Somewhere between the turbos and the trany. Initial tip in to the throttle is rewarded with a vague sort of, hang on, I need to get back in gear again feeling. Not nice. You just can't get any super-sharp really edgy go the minute you dip into the gas. There's always some thinking and hesitation. Beyond that, the BMW feeling is there, making this car feel a lot smaller than it is, certainly in turning and cornering dynamics. And to be sure, once the power does spool up, it comes on like mad. Yeah, that's a twin turbo V8 for you. Our car is a stretch, as I mentioned. And the extra leg room in cars of this class is truly transformative. And I must say, BMW did a really good job of hiding the extra six inches or so from the outside. You really don't notice it in the lines. But you do notice it in the back seat. A 750 LI starts at 85 grand, with nav, iDrive, hard drive audio system and four-zone climate control, but then start piling it on. Head up display, 1300, adaptive cruise control, 2400, rear seat entertainment, 2200, and night vision, 2600. The ceramic finish on the console trim is a snake-oilish 650, add 2000 for premium sound with iPod and USB, 750 more for cameras, the one in the back and the two in the front. Not a cheap date done up CNET style. But if you go that way, it's one of the most tech, luscious cars on the road today. ^M00:05:37 [ Music ]