Fresh off our experience with BMW's X6 M
and discussions of future products with the M Division chief Dr Kay Segler, more news about the future of the M brand has emerged. Once again it's Segler spreading the news, but this time it's not so good: there is no M7 in the works.
Instead, the twin-turbo V12 760i
will take the top billing for the 7-series powertrains, and when outfitted with the M-Sport package
, will comprise the highest-performance 7 available.
While it's always a sad thing to hear a high-performance variant has met the budgetary axe, it's not so sad in this case, as Segler pointed out to Automotive News
. "We've looked at that and decided not to do it. The 760 with AWD is a very strong offer. The M sales would be too small for our total investment," Segler said of the M7.
With a 6.0L, 536hp twin-turbo V12 under the hood, Segler has a point. Piped through BMW's AWD system
, that power is capable of careening the big sedan to 62mph in under 4.6 seconds while delivering a European cycle rating of 18mpg US.
Those figures match or beat the 555hp X6 M's specifications, so in effect, the regular BMW has simply grown so capable as to usurp the need for an M-variant. There are also those that would argue the X6 M is no true M-car at all.
And while handling and transitional performance may not be quite up to M-snuff, the car's active damping control and roll stabilization programs do give a competent balance between the ride the average limousine sedan buyer is looking for at the on-road poise necessary for a car to be called an Ultimate Driving Machine.
Of course, we'll have to wait until we get the chance to test the 760i ourselves to deliver a final verdict on the wisdom of skipping the M7.
BMW 760i and long-wheelbase 760Li
2010 BMW 7-series M Sport Package