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BMW 7 Series Interior: A Paradigm Shift in Luxury Cabin Design

CEO Khai Intela
Last week, I had the privilege of getting a sneak preview of the highly anticipated new BMW 7 Series and the all-electric i7. Not only did I have the opportunity to see these impressive vehicles...

Last week, I had the privilege of getting a sneak preview of the highly anticipated new BMW 7 Series and the all-electric i7. Not only did I have the opportunity to see these impressive vehicles up close, but I also had the chance to sit inside, explore their features, and interact with the cutting-edge technology. Designers and executives were on hand to address any queries we had about the new cars.

During my time with the 7 Series and i7, I gained valuable insight into these vehicles, both from a technological standpoint and on a visceral level. Physically experiencing the interiors allowed me to truly grasp their essence.

A Leap Forward in Interior Design

BMW i7 Interior BMW i7 Interior

I had the chance to spend time in both the new BMW 760i with its M Sport package and the BMW i7. Additionally, BMW had the previous-generation X7 LCI available for comparison, which provided a fascinating contrast between the older and newer designs. After thorough exploration, I can confidently say that the new 7 Series and i7 interior is the pinnacle of BMW craftsmanship.

BMW has made significant strides in closing the gap between the 7 Series and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class in terms of interior design and quality. The layout is intelligent, ergonomically sound, and impeccably crafted. However, what truly sets it apart is its striking visual appeal and the well-thought-out incorporation of advanced technology.

The Evolution of the Front Cabin

BMW 760i Rear Door Screen BMW 760i Rear Door Screen

Let's start with the front cabin, the most frequently used area of the interior. BMW has succeeded in elevating the premium and engaging feel of the previous generation while retaining a sense of seriousness and business-like ambiance. The new steering wheel, although slightly thick, is visually appealing and exudes superior quality compared to its predecessor. In the M Sport-equipped 760i, the three-spoke, flat-bottomed wheel features a sporty touch with a bottom spoke made from skeletonized metal, reminiscent of the aluminum arms of a supercar's wing spoiler. Coupled with the softest and most comfortable seats I have experienced in a BMW, the front thrones offer a blend of plushness and support.

A notable highlight in the front cabin is the "Interaction Bar," a trim piece with illuminated accents on the dashboard. Initially, I was skeptical about its functionality, fearing it might be a mere gimmick. However, BMW managed to strike the perfect balance. Although it undeniably possesses a cool factor, it also serves practical purposes, such as displaying light patterns for specific functions like phone calls or summoning the AI assistant. The bar extends across the entire dashboard and into the front door panels, showcasing a crystal-look effect with customizable, dazzling lighting. It is bound to impress passengers and might become a feature coveted by BMW enthusiasts in other models.

The Epitome of Rear Seat Luxury

Interaction Bar Interaction Bar

The true differentiator for luxury cars lies in the rear seat experience, and the new 7 Series and i7 deliver on every front. The rear passenger compartment is everything one desires in a luxury vehicle—spacious, comfortable, and loaded with cutting-edge technology.

Upon settling into the back seat, the first thing that strikes you is the unparalleled comfort and ample knee room. It truly provides a limousine-like experience. Furthermore, the suite of features further enhances the rear passenger experience. The automatic closing doors, operated with a simple button push near the door grab handle, mimic the convenience found in Rolls-Royce models. Is your S-Class capable of that?

You cannot touch the door button without noticing yet another remarkable feature. The rear door panels feature tilted touchscreens, a classic BMW design element, which allow control of every aspect of the rear zone—climate, ambient lighting, sunroof, sunshades, and entertainment. Clear graphics, intuitive user interface, and responsive touchscreens make these door panels superior to the old tablet-style controls that used to pop out of the armrest. Each rear passenger now has their own touchscreen, eliminating any inconveniences caused by sharing a single control system.

BMW 7 Series Entertainment BMW 7 Series Entertainment

Let's talk about entertainment. The optional theater screen has been extensively discussed, and for good reason—it's incredible. A massive 31" screen elegantly deploys from the headliner and can be moved toward the rear passengers, allowing them to use it as a touchscreen if desired. Boasting an 8K resolution, this feature is an over-the-top indulgence that is sure to delight. Powered by Amazon Fire TV, it provides access to various streaming apps, enabling the streaming of up to 8K content through its 5G data connection.

As a parent, I can't help but appreciate the convenience this offers during family road trips. Streaming my kids' favorite shows and movies on this epic screen in the back seat would make every journey a million times more enjoyable. In fact, I'd be tempted to have my wife take the wheel so I can fully immerse myself in watching movies like Severance from the comfort of the back seat, with the spine-tingling soundtrack delivered by the remarkable 4D Bowers & Wilkins surround sound system.

A Triumph in Cabin Excellence

BMW 7 Series Rear Seat BMW 7 Series Rear Seat

To put it simply, sitting in the backseat of the 7 Series or i7 is nothing short of extraordinary. As a self-proclaimed curmudgeon who isn't easily impressed, it's important to note that I don't dispense praise lightly. However, the backseat of the 7 Series has managed to astound me. This is coming from someone who has fallen out of favor with BMW's recent design language and has engaged in critical analysis. So when I say that the backseat of the 7 Series is probably the coolest I've ever encountered, you can be assured that I genuinely mean it.

The technology is genuinely useful and enjoyable, without overwhelming or being obtrusive. The seats and materials are truly exceptional. The Bowers & Wilkins sound system will leave you in awe. While the front seats may not be as mind-blowing as the rear, they are still superb. Without a doubt, the new 7 Series cabin is the pinnacle of BMW's interior design, marking a significant milestone since perhaps the E38-generation. This is the first time in years that the 7 Series can genuinely rival the S-Class in terms of interior quality.

In conclusion, BMW has achieved a true revolution in luxury cabin design with the new 7 Series and i7. The interiors are a testament to BMW's commitment to excellence and innovation. With the perfect blend of aesthetics, functionality, and cutting-edge technology, the new 7 Series sets a new standard for what a luxury vehicle should offer. Kudos to BMW for this remarkable achievement.

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