The launch of the new BMW 7-Series completes the line-up of the entire BMW range now being equipped with EfficientDynamics technologies fitted as standard. With its roof, doors, bonnet and side panels all made from aluminium to dovetail with the principle of lightweight engineering, the BMW 7-Series also has other innovative class-leading technology which improves engine performance, while cutting fuel consumption and emissions.
Brake Energy Regeneration uses the engine's power on overrun, such as braking, to charge the battery for the car's electrical circuit. When the driver is accelerating the alternator disengages so all of the engine's power is channelled towards the car's performance. Other ancillaries, such as the air-conditioning compressor, are also able to disengage to improve the all round performance of the car. This intelligent use of drivetrain power is why EfficientDynamics technology has helped the BMW 7-Series become a class-leader in terms of performance, fuel consumption and emissions.
The BMW 7-Series' drivetrain superiority is reinforced with a plethora of automotive firsts. All BMW 7-Series can now be specified with the world's first Head-up Display incorporating a speed limit warning system. A camera mounted on the back of the rear view mirror scans oncoming road signs to alert the driver of any impending speed restriction. The BMW 7-Series is also the world's first car available with a Side View camera system that operates in conjunction with Park Distance Control. The system provides an overview of traffic conditions on the iDrive display so the driver can negotiate a partially obscured junction, leave a car park or drive through a narrow gate with absolute confidence.
The new BMW 7-Series can be specified with the world's most advanced Night Vision system in a production car. BMW was the first manufacturer to fit a Night Vision system to a premium car and it has now upgraded this package to include an individual person recognition system in another world first. A control unit within the system analyses video data of human behaviour as part of the Night Vision camera's reach and can subsequently alert the driver if it detects a human is moving into the path of the vehicle.
Building on the impressive list of innovations, the BMW 7-Series is the first BMW to feature Lane Change Warning combined with Lane Departure Warning. The latter is a system that first appeared on 5 and 6 Series models and uses a camera to monitor road markings. Should the driver start to stray out of lane, a gentle vibration of the steering wheel would provide an alert. However, courtesy of cameras located in the door mirrors, Lane Change Warning adds another tier of driver safety. The two cameras constantly scan the blind spot either side of the vehicle, up to a distance of 60 metres, and alert the driver to the presence of another vehicle with a triangular symbol in the door mirror.
Completing the host of innovations is speed-related Integral Active Steering. A car specified with this optional equipment allows the rear wheels to turn by up to 3º. At slow speeds it is highly manoeuvrable, while at a faster pace it offers enhanced composure and driving dynamics. BMW's flagship car is also the world's first to come with full-scale Internet connectivity.