BMW i7: electric executive, spied

Published: 23 July 2020

► First look at the all-electric exec barge
 Coming in 2022 after the i4, i5 and iNext
 Twinned with the 7-Series, but different platform

Our spy photographers have snapped pictures of the BMW i7, a forthcoming all-electric version of Munich’s range-topping 7-Series saloon. CAR understands the i7 be revealed around the same time as the next 7-Series, but it’ll use an all-new platform similar to the one underpinning the iNext and i5.  

These pictures show a prototype EV wrapped in a camo, and featuring BMW’s ‘Electric Test Vehicle’ badge, confirming its powertrain. Munich has been very thorough in disguising the front of the car, but we can still some make some educated guesses about the new i7’s face.

Electric BMWs: a guide

The camo suggests narrower lights positioned lower than the current model – which looks a little old 8-Series to our eyes. It could mark a very interesting styling direction for BMW, or it could be the camo playing tricks. We’re hoping it’s the former.  

An electric 7-Series

Eagle-eyed viewers will spot wing-mounted cameras and an extensive array of autonomous kit at the car’s front. The BMW 7-Series is traditionally packed full of new technology, and it looks like Munich is applying the same philosophy to the i7. We’re predicting the usual mod-cons we see in EVs but also a strong focus on autonomous driving, judging by the sheer number of sensors and cameras on the car. 

As for the grille? Expect it to be huge – this is a BMW 7-series, after all – and blocked off, like Munich’s other EVs. 

So where does this fit in?

This year the iX3 kicks off Munich’s electric plan, 2021 will see the debut of the i4 and iNext, and 2022 will feature the i7 and the i5. It’ll be released around the same time as the next 7-series, and look relatively similar – though it’ll be very different underneath.

By Curtis Moldrich

CAR's online editor and racing-sim enthusiast