BMW 740e blends limousine luxury with a green drivetrain
BMW's 7-series cars are designed to compete with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and the Genesis G90 as luxury cars in which the owner is more likely to ride in the back seat than take the wheel. These full-size sedans offer ample rear seat legroom and creature comforts while still maintaining a satisfying driving experience.
BMW offers a wide variety with its 7-series, ranging from the base 3.0-liter turbocharged inline 6-cylinder engine to a turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 and even a turbocharged 6.6-liter V12 with 601 horsepower. But perhaps the most interesting version of the 7-series is the 740e, equipped with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine mated to a plug-in hybrid system with an electric motor intended for both fuel economy and performance.
The two-liter engine in the 740e produces 255 horsepower on its own, augmented with an additional 111 horsepower from the eDrive electric motor. Total output from the combined system is rated at 322 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. The 740e uses all-wheel-drive, and has an 8-speed automatic transmission. BMW performance enthusiasts might wonder about the small engine, but the 740e will do 0-60 in 5.1 seconds.
With a full charge to the 9.2 kWh battery pack, the 740e can travel up to 14 miles on electric power alone. The BMW uses a standard Level 1 or Level 2 charging port, and can fully charge its battery in under 3 hours with a Level 2 charger. Fuel economy is EPA-estimated at 64 MPGe when running in all-electric mode, and 27 MPG combined when running in hybrid mode. The 740e will travel 340 miles on a full battery and a full tank of gas.
Inside, the 740e is a complete BMW luxury experience. A Harman Kardon surround audio system is standard, as is the 10.2-inch touchscreen-based iDrive 6.0 infotainment and control system, with navigation and real-time traffic information. The system also supports gesture control, so you don't even have to touch the screen to make changes. Standard tech also includes front and rear parking distance control, and a rear-view camera are standard.
The driver's seat is both heated and ventilated, with 14-way power adjustment including lumbar support and side bolster adjustments. All seats are trimmed in Dakota leather.
Optional equipment includes packages such as the cold weather pack that delivers heated rear seats and a heated steering wheel. The driving assistance package gives you a head-up display, blind spot monitoring, and lane departure warning. You can also add the driving assistance plus package with adaptive cruise control, active driving assistant, lane change assistance with side collision avoidance, and a traffic jam assistant. Surround-view camera is also available.
On the road, the 740e is everything you expect from an executive car. It's quiet, comfortable, and floats down the road. You can tighten up the ride by placing the car into Sport mode, however. One point worth noting: The 2018 BMW 740e is not eligible for Oregon's Clean Vehicle Rebate program because the base price is higher than $50,000.
2018 BMW 740e
Base price: $91,695
Price as tested: $99,845
Type: Full size sedan
Engine: 2.0-liter turbocharged engine with electric motor (322 hp, 369 lbs-ft)
Transmission: 8-speed automatic
EPA estimated mileage: 27 MPG combined, 64 MPGe
Overall length: 206.6 inches
Curb weight: 4,740 pounds
Final assembly: Dingolfing, Germany
Quality local journalism takes time and money, which comes, in part, from paying readers. If you enjoy articles like this one, please consider supporting us.
(It costs just a few cents a day.)