• Dec 16, 2009
2011 BMW 740i – Click above for high-res image gallery

When the latest generation of BMW's big 7 Series went on sale in the U.S. early this year, buyers had a choice of either the marvelous twin-turbocharged and direct-injected 400-hp 4.4-liter V8 or the supremely impressive twin-turbo, 535-hp V12. A hybrid version of the 7 also goes on sale here in a few months, still mated to the V8. Since day one, European drivers have also had a pair of six-cylinder options fueled by either gasoline or diesel. BMW still hasn't committed to a 7 Series diesel for the U.S., but today has confirmed will be getting the sweet gas-powered I-6.

The 740i and 740LI both come to the U.S. market in spring 2010 powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter six. In 740 trim, the six cranks out 315 hp and 330 pound-feet, up a bit from the 300/300 ratings in the smaller 335i. The 740 engine does retain the direct injection and variable valve timing on both intake and exhaust. This new model also marks the U.S. debut of brake energy regeneration on a non-hybrid BMW. Interestingly, BMW has opted to retain the 7's 6-speed automatic transmission rather than upgrading to the new 8-speed found in the hybrid and the new 5 Series.



[Source: BMW]

PRESS RELEASE

The 2011 BMW 740i and 740Li Sedans – Six-Cylinder BMW Power Returns to the 7 Series in North America


Woodcliff Lake, NJ – December 16, 2009 2:00pm Eastern ... As an exciting example of its EfficientDynamics engineering philosophy, BMW announced the North American debut of the 7 Series with a twin-turbocharged inline-6 engine. Featuring BMW's award-winning inline-6 engine that produces V-8 power on six-cylinder fuel consumption, the new BMW 740i and BMW 740Li achieve a remarkable balance of power, efficiency, and sporty driving dynamics. Both models will go on sale in the United States as 2011 models in Spring 2010. Pricing will be announced closer to the on-sale date.

In 1977, the original BMW 7 Series was launched exclusively with inline-6 propulsion. The United States first met the BMW 7 Series in the 1978 model year as the 733i Sedan. The 733i featured a 3.2-liter inline-6 engine rated at 197 horsepower. The 733i remained on sale in America until it was replaced in 1985 by the BMW 735i Sedan. The 735i, which featured an updated inline-6 engine producing 218 horsepower from 3.4 liters, enjoyed a production run that lasted through the end of the 1992 model year. The 735i was joined by the extended-wheelbase 735iL in May of 1988.

A keystone of BMW's EfficientDynamics philosophy is "virtual displacement," the notion that BMW's modern engines of smaller displacement can equal or exceed the outputs of traditional engines of larger displacement and more cylinders. This principle is already seen in the BMW 750i model, which features a twin-turbocharged V-8 engine performing at the level of BMW's previous-generation V12 engine. Virtual displacement provides the power of a larger engine with the fuel efficiency and low CO2 emissions signature of a smaller engine. The 2011 BMW 740i and 740Li feature BMW's internationally acclaimed twin-turbocharged inline-6 engine with up-rated output of 315 horsepower at 5800 rpm and 330 lb-ft of torque from 1600-4500 rpm. All-aluminum construction, High Precision direct fuel injection, Double-VANOS variable camshaft technology, and Brake Energy Regeneration are a few of the technologies used under the BMW EfficientDynamics philosophy to place the 740i and 740Li among the most powerful six-cylinder luxury sedans in the world.

Delivering power to the rear wheels is BMW's 6-speed automatic transmission, well-known for fast, smooth gearshifts and an ability to intelligently adapt to the driver's style. Both models will be available with the full complement of well-known 7 Series options and packages, including the M Sport Package, Driver Assistance Package, Luxury Seating Packages, Rear Entertainment Package, and even the BMW Individual Composition Package.


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  • 30 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      I hope they fixed the high pressure fuel pump problem that the 335i has.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Make that "$89k" unless you know someone selling an S550 for $89. If so, please post their contact information here immediately.
      • 5 Years Ago
      2 bad, the current 3.0 diesel found in the 530d and others sounds really cool.

      530D sound!!!
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RL4X6vPDoC8&feature=related
      it sounds soooooo sweet running idle.

      nice video, some touring his 530d up to 220km/h.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Z0AdMe0Ks&feature=fvw
      530d 0-160 km/h
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgYYaCmvtCQ&feature=related
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Fara
        'Except, you know, that engine isn't used anymore...'

        wrong answer
        : )

        330d,330xd, 530d, 530xd, 730d, x3 30d, x5 30d and x6 30.
        are still available here in europe.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Except, you know, that engine isn't used anymore...
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is what happens when you don't have the technology to built naturally aspirated engine, you have to go turbo. That's why BMW is going back to turbo.

      Cheap way to make power. the M3 used to have such of a nice engine and now turbo. its like OK HERE WE GO, back to old technology.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hmm. I don't have a problem with this in the sense that I've thought we should have access to sub V8 engines in the 7, S and A8 for years, but I will say that I suspect rather than create a more affordable trim in the 7-series lineup, this will just serve to artificially inflate the asking price for the extra cylinders. I think the jump between the '07 750 and '09 750 is just ludicrous. Of course it's a better car, but that's true about every new model for the most part, and an $8,000 - $9,000 hike is a bit much to stomach. They'll probably be the only game in town at that price point, though. I bet the new A8 hits the $80k mark, and the S550 is silly money at $89.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Can we expect the price to be around 50 large? My dad drives a Merc S350 over in the PRC, and power doesn't really matter when you're not driving "In a spirited fashion".
      • 5 Years Ago
      Offer it with a six speed like the 335i, and we have a deal!
      • 5 Years Ago
      I like the idea. I think it would work for the 7 Series buyers who don't care as much about the driving as much as the badge, size, and luxury.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Agree, especially since a 740i would be acceptable but a 735i already sounds as too "entry-level". But really how much cheaper can the 740i be from the 750i? At certain prices ranges the guy who can pluck $78K for a car, most likely can also afford $89K.

        What they really have to do is offer a diesel version. They could use the diesel already offered in the X5. All that torque should be sufficient to move the 7-Series around town while offering superior fuel economy.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Okay...so the 740i is really a twin-turbo 3.0L. The 750i is really a 4.4L.

      What's wrong with calling the six a 730i? And the eight a 744i?

      What's the point again of the alphanumeric at that point?

      Just like Benz puts '6.3' badges all over their 6.2L AMG cars, this just smacks of pretentiousness.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It IS pretentious, sadly like most of their customers. Great cars, and I'll prolly have a 3 or 5 at some point but damn. You bring up model designations in some Mercedes or BMW circles and people really consider someone as less for getting the smaller engine.

        I knew a guy who is still convinced the best Benz is the one with the biggest name/number... even tho owners on here admit that their S65s/S63s weren't as good as their "lesser" S550s, etc.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Jei

        V6?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Because the same-displacement engine can produce different levels of power output, depending on how much boost the turbos are tuned to provide. How else would they differentiate such cases?
        • 5 Years Ago
        I really do understand your point. But I think BMW tried to offer the V6 version of the 7-series a while ago (in the US) and many of their trusted customers balked at the idea of their beloved 7er being issued with a six-banger. They raised their noses to a high-end luxury model ever being offered with 6-cyl power --- at that time fuel ratings wasn't a real issue in the US.

        I would love to have the chance to own the diesel V6 version of the 7-series though. HP would be low, but torque would be plenty high --- not to mention good fuel consumption ratings.
        • 5 Years Ago
        because they have the power relational to previous models
        that's why the do it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wonder how much cheaper the V6, with 85 less horsepower will be ?

      Oh...that's right...it's a BMW and drivers should feel honored to be driving the ultimate driving machine !

      Don't get me wrong I am all for BMW's move to a 6 for their flagship, but one wonders if many mfg's can hike pricing through the roof because they shove a bigger engine into the same auto, with maybe some suspension tuning and some extra decals, then it means the heftier engine is the most expensive upgrade, right ? Think Stang's, S4's etc.

      Therefore, if you drop from V8 to a smaller capacity V6, one should expect the same drop, as their would be hike no ? The reply to which I can hear now " No no no, it's not the same thing at all...if you calculate how much we will be saving you at the pump, it more than makes up for paying close to the same price as you would for the V8..." at which point the dealer pulls out the calculator to show you the error of your ways. And then you explain, " well if it has turbo's doesn't it mean that I am going to have to use premium fuel now, which might actually cancel out the fuel cost savings ? "

      I don't mean to pick on BMW because a number of mfg's are going V6 vs V8 and grappling with the dilemma of trying to sell these lesser engines at the same price points as they were able to justify when the only option on offer were much bigger engines.

      Oh how hard the marketing boffins must be working right now. =)
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ neptronix, ok ok, I stand corrected, but my theory still stands given that the performance numbers still drop significantly. Looks like I will have to dig into the books a little to understand the difference. As mentioned I am no technician. My point was more about performance. No matter how you slice it, your getting less of it with the I6 =).
        • 5 Years Ago
        Syllepses & Naturally shocked...look gents, I understand that there is a debate that continues to rage on about turbo's and premium fuel but sorry, I run an A4 1.8T and have tried an extended run on lower octane fuel ( in America not in Europe where the lowest grade on offer works ) and you can debate me all day long, there is a noticeable choke up and reduction in performance. In pure numbers it might amount to very little but for a day in day out driver of my automobile, I feel the difference.

        Now maybe I was not aware that BMW's " special " V8's run on premium only but I tend to believe that BMW's requirement to run premium on it's V8's, when many V8's the world over run perfectly well on lower grade is far more of a marketing falacy then the " it is better for a turbo'd engine to run premium fuel stateside ". I am no engineer but I have researched this question of Turbo at deep deep length, because I am paying the difference to run my car and not with dorks of the likes of VW or Audi forums, I have asked one tech after another, " safer to run turbo on premium ".
        • 5 Years Ago
        @pgarez

        yes, our lowest is 95.

        you could order some special pistons from mahle.de or .com
        : )
        they also make the pistons for various F1 engines, including ferrari
        • 5 Years Ago
        pgarez: one thing you're not taking into consideration is direct injection. DI allows turbo'd engines to use regular gas without choking or bogging down. You A4 1.8T doesn't have DI, so it doesn't surprise me that you would notice a difference with regular over premium.
        • 5 Years Ago
        You almost had a point until you mentioned premium fuel, which you'll be using in both the 750 and the 760, too.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Thank you for the clarification Jimbo, learn something new every day ( I mean this with all sincerity ) I hope that naturally shocked reads your comment, because we are both guilty of making blanket statements pertaining to the need for premium fuel with Turbo'd vehicles. I will have to keep my eye on whether a T vehicle with DI has a manufacturer recommendation that premium be used. However, again thank you for the clarification =)
        • 5 Years Ago
        argh. it's not v6. it's inline 6.
        There's a big difference.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I really wish they offered here the European 730d...

      245hp, but a whopping 400lbft of torque and still 41mpg!!!!

      • 5 Years Ago
      the car is nice, but those lil chrome wing-ets on the side look cheap.
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