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BMW's 400kW hooligan limo

2009-04-14 07:05
Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer BMW
Model 760i
Engine 6l, twin-turbo V12
Power 400kW @ 5 000r/min
Torque 750Nm @ 1 500r/min
Transmission 8-speed auto
Zero To Hundred 4.6 seconds
Top Speed 250km/h
Fuel Consumption 13l/100km
Global automotive markets are entering a period of unparalleled rationalisation, yet premium manufacturers, like BMW, know the image value of having a V12 limo within the product portfolio.

Despite Europe seemingly having turned the page to a future of inexorably declining engine capacities, American, Gulf and Oriental markets are still keen consumers of the dozen-cylinder car.

BMW is expected to showcase the new 760i and its long-wheel base sibling, the 760Li (140mm longer), at the Shanghai auto show next week.

Big, bad Bimmer

The new V12 models are distinguished by chrome strips around their quad exhausts and lower front bumper, larger chrome surrounds around the front kidneys and special 19-inch wheels.

Interior embellishments include a Nappa leather-trimmed instrument panel and Alcantara headliner.

Denoting its status in the range, the 760i features a comprehensive range of equipment including electronic dampers all-round with air-suspension, stability control and a self-levelling rear axle.

Options include active steering, night vision, lane-departure warning, adaptive headlights and active cruise control with stop-and-go capability.

Employing twin-turbochargers, one for each bank of six-cylinders, BMW has managed to extract 400kW and 750Nm from the completely new 6l V12 engine.

Although the 10.0:1 compression ratio appears high for a turbocharged engine, the direct-injection fuelling system’s cooling effect ensures perfect tolerances.

Hooligan limo?

Turbocharger plumbing in the 760i is of the traditional variety, with the turbos residing outside the cylinder banks, instead of between them, as is the case with the new X6 M.

BMW has engineered the 760i exhaust system with the requisite hooligan acoustics in mind. Exhaust mounted butterfly valves will open, prompted by full-throttle driving, to deliver the necessary performance sound effects.

Delivering torque to the rear wheels is a ZF-developed, eight-speed, automatic transmission.

This ZF gearbox, which Audi will fit to its new A8 next year, can skip through ratios engaging a single clutch mechanism, radically shortening shift times and enabling multiple-gear downshifts for swift overtaking.

In terms of performance the turbocharged V12 and eight-speed transmission propel the 760i from 0-100km/h in a very brisk 4.6 seconds, whilst BMW claims the drivetrain returns 13l/100km gauged to EU average consumption standard.

Most perplexing to us is to see a new BMW where the bootline badge is actually commensurate to the bonnet covered engine capacity...


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