The BMW i7 has been sighted locally in the wild in Kuala Lumpur, following its previous appearance at a private preview event in July this year. Registrations of interest were opened on the BMW Malaysia website in April, and now the electric limousine’s appearance in public could point to an official launch soon.
Photographed by paultan.org reader Aaron Eo, this example of the BMW i7 differs from the example shown at the private preview with a lighter exterior colour, appearing to be close to the Oxide Grey Metallic finish worn on the world debut car, albeit with blacked-out trim for this sportier-looking version.
This is also an example in the correct right-hand-drive for our market, whereas the black unit at the private preview in July was a left-hand drive, pre-production unit that would not be representative of what local customers will be offered by BMW Malaysia.
The German manufacturer has stated at the debut of the i7 that the electric sedan will first be offered as the xDrive60, which packs a 101.7-kWh lithium-ion battery located underfloor, and which provides for a range of 625 km on the WLTP test cycle.
Two electric motors make up the AWD powertrain, yielding 544 PS and 745 Nm of torque in combined outputs, which enables the i7 to do the 0-100 km/h sprint in 4.7 seconds while top speed is electronically limited to 240 km/h.
Replenishing the i7’s battery is via a Combine Charging Unit (CCU) that enables AC charging at up to 11 kW through a Type 2 connection, bringing up a full charge in around 9.5 hours. Meanwhile, DC fast charging can be done at up to 195 kW through a CCS2 connection, bringing a 10-80% state of charge in 34 minutes.
Competition for the i7, naturally would be from the three-pointed star, which is the Mercedes-Benz EQS that was launched in Malaysia as the EQS 450+ AMG Line in July this year. Assuming it is the xDrive M60 variant of the i7 that launches, this won’t quite be an exact match-up, where the EQS makes 333 PS and 565 Nm, against the 544 PS/745 Nm of the i7 xDrive60.
A closer match to this i7 would be the EQS 580 4Matic, which packs 523 PS and 855 Nm of torque from its dual-motor AWD powertrain. The EQS already on sale in Malaysia, however counters with longer battery range, at 782 km of range from a fully charged 107.8 kWh battery.
A previous look at pricing in the United Kingdom revealed that prices in the UK start from 110,000 pounds sterling, or RM586k at today’s exchange rate. This is for the sole xDrive60 variant in base form, and adding on equipment may yet bring the i7’s Malaysian pricing close to the RM700k mark, which brings it close to that of the Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ AMG Line.
For those of you shopping in this segment, will the BMW i7 be your chariot of choice?
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