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Driving Seat: Mid-life makeover.

NO mid-life crisis for BMW's 7-Series luxury saloon, but a mid-life make over this spring nonetheless.

Despite criticisms of its radical styling and controversial i Drive central control system the current car has become the best selling 7-Series to date after just three years.

Soon it will be time for a refresh, however, with some subtle styling changes, a simpler i Drive system and a range of new engines.

The improvements have forced the price to rise significantly, with a new entry price of pounds 47, 500 for the best-selling 730d in comparison to pounds 45, 950 for the current car.

To maintain its popularity, the engine has been extensively revised and gets an all-aluminium cylinder block that reduces the weight by 25kg.

Power is increased by 12% to 228bhp and torque is 4% higher at 520Nm.

The petrol-powered 730i now uses the six-cylinder engine from the 5-Series. The 3. 6-litre 735i is replaced by a four-litre 740i, which is faster, taking 6. 8 seconds to reach 60mph, with just a minor effect on economy at 25mpg.

A new 4. 8-litre V8-powered 750i replaces the current 745i with more power and better performance. The car's chassis has also been updated to manage the additional performance, with the all-aluminium suspension updated and given a 14 mm wider track.

All models get xenon head lamps and a head lamp cleaning system and all models receive Brake Force Display, which is a two-stage brake light system which warns following drivers of an emergency stop.


The new BMW 7-Series
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Copyright 2005 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Feb 4, 2005
Previous Article:Driving Seat: Peoples' friend.
Next Article:Driving Seat: Plugs & POINTS.

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