Black BMW 7 Series parked next to a lake

BMW 7 Series review (2015-2022)

The BMW 7 Series saloon is fine of the finest luxury cars you can buy. From its wonderful interior of premium materials to its incredibly smooth drive, the 7 Series is sophisticated, packed with technology and hard to fault.

Pros

  • Better to drive than most of its rivals
  • Spacious and luxurious interior
  • Lots of easy-to-use technology

Cons

  • Running costs can be high
  • Boot space not as good as some rivals
  • It's a long car, so parking can be a challenge

Summary

“The best seats are in the back, where you can relax in real comfort.”

The BMW 7 Series is stylish and spacious throughout. In the front, you’ll find armchair-like seats and soothing ambient lighting, though the best seats are in the back, where you can relax in real comfort. The 7 Series is great to drive with a range of quiet, powerful engines to suit those seeking economy or performance.

It’s packed with technology, from gesture control for the infotainment system – so at the wave of a hand you can turn the volume up or down – to an app on the key fob that you can use to park the car remotely.

We're looking here at the sixth-generation car, sold new from 2015 until 2022. An update in 2019 saw changes to the design including a much larger grille and changes to the interior trim. A seventh-generation model was introduced in 2022.

What's the interior like?

“The luxury and technology is hugely impressive.”

Inside, the luxury and technology is hugely impressive. The seats feature the best quality leather,  providing excellent comfort on all journeys. The dashboard is well designed with easy to use controls and BMW’s Personal Assistant which responds to voice commands. There are lots of ambient lighting options and some models will automatically adjust things like the audio and climate control when you tell the car what mood you are in. It feels more high-tech and modern than its main rival, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

Passengers in the back are very well looked-after by the 7 Series, and have lots of space to stretch out on a long journey, espeically in the stretched long-wheelbase model. Taller passengers will have a bit more headroom in an S-Class or an Audi A8, however. Standard versions have three back seats but on those with two there’s the option of partially reclining Executive Lounge seating. There’s a removable Bluetooth connected tablet, and you can make use of the in-car wi-fi.

There's loads of storage areas and the option of a table that folds out from the centre armrest in the back for those who want to work. Boot space is superb with a capacity of 420-litres which is enough room for three medium sized suitcases or a couple of sets of golf clubs.

What's it like to drive?

“The BMW 7 Series is great to drive, and more agile than both the S-Class and the A8.”

The BMW 7 Series is great to drive, and more agile than both the S-Class and the A8. It feels smaller and lighter than it actually is thanks to a great driving position and lightweight carbon fibre used in its construction. Despite being a big car, it whip nimbly around tight corners and is easy to drive in the city where parking systems such as sensors, 360-degree cameras and a remote parking app on the key fob will come in useful. It cruises effortlessly on the motorway providing great comfort thanks to excellent air suspension.

There’s a choice of rear- or all-wheel drive, the latter providing better grip in slippery conditions while using only slightly more fuel. There’s a choice of petrol, diesel and plug-in hybrid versions, all of which deliver lots of power and are efficient for their size.

Is it cost-efficient to buy and run?

“Good value when buying used but running costs are on the high side.”

Like most luxury models, the BMW 7 Series depreciates significantly from new, which means you get good value when buying used. Prices are comparable to the Audi A8 and Mercedes S-Class.

Running costs are on the high side, with insurance in the top bracket and high Vehicle Excise Duty (car tax) due on all cars costing over £40,000 if registered after April 2017. Service and maintenance costs are similar to its luxury rivals.

Diesel versions are the most efficient when it comes to fuel economy and there is also a plug-in hybrid – the 745e xDrive – that can provide up to 36 miles of electric-only driving.

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Which one is best for you?

Diesel versions of the BMW 7 Series tend to be the most popular, particularly the efficient 730d. Standard models have luxurious Nappa leather seats, a great infotainment system and lots of systems to help with parking. Exclusive versions have massaging back seats and an upgraded audio system, so are worth considerinbg if you want extra luxury, while M-Sport models have sporty looks inside and out. You get lots of equipment in all 7 Series models but there were lots of options when it was new, including extras like rear seat entertainment. It's worth checking what boxes were ticked by the original owner and choosing a carthat’s best for you and your passengers.

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