February 2009 saw the sprightly launch of the new 2009 7 Series BMW in India, amidst a lot of fanfare. Significantly, the Indian launch takes place only a couple of months after the global launch of the new 7 series, clearly pointing towards the importance that India holds for the Beemer badge. After all, in India, even if the overall volumes are low, the rate of growth in sales of super luxury cars is going in only one direction, and that is up, up and away! Moreover, the timing of the launch could not have been more appropriate; for the first time, BMW has overtaken its arch-rival Mercedes Benz in terms of sales in the country – January 2009 sales for BMW were nearly thrice as much as that of Mercedes Benz.
The 7 series in India has been launched in three different variants – the 730Ld, the 740i, and the 750i. There is also the 760Li which has not yet been launched here, and is expected to be made available only under the ‘made-to-order’ provision. The price of the 750i is a phenomenal Rs 9,330,000 (ex-showroom Delhi) which works out to about $186,600. The prices of the other two variants have not yet been announced. The fact that the car is fully-imported as a Completely Built Unit (CBU) has a major role to play in the exceptionally high price tag that the car comes with.
It is little surprise that one can literally be spoilt for choice in the new 7 series, starting with an abundance of 8 paint and 8 interior fabric finishes. Of course, there are many more customizable options in the car, and one only needs to express one’s desire to the guys at Bayerische Motoren Werke – they are listening!
A first with this version of the 2009 BMW 7 series is the Dynamic Damper Technology, which brings into the fray, dampers that constantly adjust to variable road conditions and multiple styles of motoring, thus preventing unwanted movements of the car. There is also a new ‘Drive Selector’ option which comes in four different modes – Comfort, Normal, Sport and Sport Plus.
Safety features are of course integral to BMW as a whole and the 7 series in particular. Night Vision, a feature first introduced by BMW is taken to the next level in the 7 series, with the ‘Pedestrian Recognition’ attribute that scans the road up to 300 meters ahead for any heat sources that may be in the path of the car.
If you thought that all the technical razzmatazz in the machine left little room for entertainment, think again! A state-of-the-art entertainment system comes as standard fitment in the 750Li which includes a 6 DVD changer along with an 80 GB hard disk and a TV module that includes two 9.2 inch screens integrated in the front seat backrests with independent rear seat controls.
Summing up, the new 2009 BMW 7 series is indeed the ultimate in luxury. The Mercedes Benz S-Class finally has some worthy competition, and in spite of the three-pointed star’s much lesser price tag, those in the market for this class of cars, are likely to give the Benz the slip – for the Beemer!