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Refreshing or Revolting: 2016 BMW 7 Series

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 6/13/2015 Megan Stewart

Concept cars are usually a basis for an automaker to produce a new or updated model from, and rarely are all the details used in a production model. For the 2016 BMW 7 Series, the automaker decided to keep many of the same styling cues seen on last year's Vision Luxury concept, toning them down slightly for the market. While the looks aren't drastically different from the outgoing model, the new 7 Series has a new, lightweight body, new technologies, and now a plug-in hybrid option. Cosmetic changes may be minimal, but are they enough to excite consumers in this segment?

The 2016 BMW 7 Series gains over an inch in length over the outgoing model and will be offered exclusively as a long-wheelbase version here in the U.S. The new model features a revised front end with the headlights connecting to the signature kidney grille, while on the previous model they hovered a few inches apart. BMW has also updated the lower grille, adding three squared-off foglights to replace the round ones found on the previous model.

2016 BMW 750Li xDrive© Provided by MotorTrend 2016 BMW 750Li xDrive

Looking at the side of the new BMW 7 Series, the new model offers more streamlined character lines and an updated lower line with an Air Curtain vent just behind the front wheels. The windows have also been slightly tweaked, giving a rounded appearance. At the rear, BMW has updated the taillights, going away from the bulkier placement to a smaller, more linear look that hugs the chrome bar running the length of the trunklid. The rear exhaust has been tweaked, showing off a larger and cleaner design.

Sitting down behind the wheel, the new dash and center stack layout catches the eye. BMW has updated the infotainment system for the new model year, and now the screen sits upright instead of being embedded in the dash itself. The controls have been trimmed and the layout is much cleaner than that of the outgoing model. The 2016 BMW 7 Series also adds built in Wi-Fi, and an assortment of packages, including the Luxury Rear Seating package and Ambient Air package.

With its updated styling, lightweight construction, exclusive long-wheelbase option, and hybrid variant, the 2016 BMW 7 Series brings another level of luxury to the segment. While changes may be subtle in terms of design, the changes to the sheetmetal and the addition of the hybrid model may be enough for consumers. Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

Last week's Refreshing or Revolting featured the 2016 BMW X1, and reactions were right in the middle.

"Refreshing, the slight change in proportions makes it look less like a station wagon, the thing people in crossovers want to avoid. The interior is still looking better than the current 3 Series," said damaje199.

"So boring! But no surprise here, now all models look alike," said jachavarria.

Refreshing or Revolting: 2016 BMW 7 Series

"Best looking Bimmer SAV to date," said gtodd.

"Neither. Just apathy. They all look the same X1, X3, X5, etc.," said anandn.


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