With the recent introductions of the 3 Series and X5 plug-in hybrids, it was only a matter of time until BMW’s flagship sedan debuted with its own electrified powertrain. BMW has unveiled the 740e plug-in hybrid, which will be offered in three versions when it goes on sale later this year. With up to 30 miles of fully-electric driving range, the 740e plug-in hybrid may not be able to take on the Tesla Model S, but it represents a move in the right direction.
When the 740e goes on sale, BMW is going to offer the large flagship sedan in three versions: BMW 740e iPerformance, long-wheelbase BMW 740Le iPerformance and BMW 740Le xDrive iPerformance. All three versions are powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that is mated to an electric motor to generate a total 326 horsepower and 369 lb-ft. of torque. The hybrid powertrain sends its power via an 8-speed automatic to either the rear or all four wheels. Depending on which model you choose, the 740e plug-in hybrid can travel between 25-30 miles in electric mode and it will take less than four hours to recharge from a domestic power socket and in under three hours from a BMW i Wallbox.
Just like BMW’s other electrified models, the 740e will offer different driving modes to suit the driver and improve the 740e’s efficiency. An eDrive button will allow the driver to choose between the Auto and Max drive settings. The Auto setting is the default setting that seeks to maximize range the 704e’s electric driving range by powering up the gasoline engine at 50 mph or if the driver floors it. With the Max setting, the 740e defaults to electric-only mode and can stay in this mode up to 87 mph. In the Max setting, the engine will still power up under spirited driving. There are other modes to control power usage: Adaptive, Comfort, Sport, and EcoPro. A Battery Control function allows the driver to force the 740e’s powertrain to maintain the battery charge anywhere between 30 and 100 percent that way electric power can be reserved.
BMW hasn’t released all the pricing details for the 740e, but it’s expected to start around $90k, when it arrives in U.S. showrooms in the next month or two.
All images @ BMW