With the New York Motor Show going on across the pond, all eyes are on the Big Apple for the latest car news, but BMW has chosen today to launch what appears to be a car that won’t be going to the USA – The BMW 760i.
Many of us wondered if BMW would give up on their V12 now the world is turning against seemingly profligate cars. But BMW obviously feel there is still a market for a big V12 super-luxo-barge (thank goodness) and have launched the V12 version of the latest 7 Series in both standard and long wheelbase versions.
But there is probably more to this than cocking a snook at all the big engine no-nos going on. A very big, and growing rapidly, market for the BMW 7 Series is China. And, as we all know, Chinese new rich are very much on the up, even in the current economic malaise. And the Chinese do seem to love the 7 Series, and the bigger the engine the better. The fact that BMW do not seem, at least at the moment, intent on taking the car to the US seems to indicate that this car is being made for one reason only – to sell at the top end in emerging markets.
But despite an obviously smaller world market for a V12 saloon than there once was, BMW have not just shoved the old V12 in with a few tweaks. This is a brand new engine – a 6.0 litre V12 sporting the same technology as the V8 in the 750i – delivering 544bhp and 553lb/ft of torque. It will get this huge car to 60 in around 4.5 seconds, but manages around 22mpg.
Very good car, the latest BMW 7 Series, and this V12 760i will be a cracker, especially if you need to be propelled in something the size of the Berliner Dom at close to the speed of sound. No word on prices yet, but we’re guessing they won’t be bargain basement.