BMW has given the full-size 7 Series its first refresh since the current model was introduced for the 2016 model year. It's an update that includes mild styling changes, an infusion of high-tech features and a revised, more powerful gas-electric powertrain for the hybrid model.
The hybrid is the only version with news under the hood. It uses the same 2.0L turbo four-cylinder as last year's car, but gains a stronger electric motor and more power-dense battery pack that push power output to 390 hp from the 2018 model's 322.
The changes to the latest 7 Series are, as expected, an evolution of the outgoing car. Among the most notable interior changes is a new all-digital gauge cluster that will offer the same level of configurability as those in the Audi and Benz.
Despite the preponderance of SUVs and crossovers in the high-end of the contemporary automotive marketplace, Germany's luxury brands still see a place for big, luxurious cars; the 7 Series competes primarily with the Audi A8 and Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
Once again, the model range will comprise the aforementioned PHEV model, plus 750i xDrive variants in regular and long wheelbase forms, the performance-geared M760Li and an ultra posh Alpina B7.
Alpina is a long-time BMW collaborator, having turned the Bavarian brand's cars into exclusive luxury models with distinctive styling touches and performance upgrades. The B7 gives BMW a competitor for the rarefied Maybach version of the S-Class.
The 750i will use a carried-forward 4.4L turbo V8 good for 445 and 480 lb-ft of torque, while the M760Li and B7 share a 6.0L V12 pounding out 600 and 590 lb-ft.
All 7 Series variants come standard with xDrive AWD and an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Only the M760Li uses a version of that gearbox with a launch control function. It also boasts an active exhaust that responds to throttle position to boost the car's mechanical soundtrack, and a drive mode system that can automatically choose the setting best suited to the driving situation at hand.
Other available features include four-zone climate control, four-wheel steering, surround-view camera system, massaging seats and soft-close doors.