Strengths: Strong and luxurious styling, attention to detail and the 3 litre 6-cylinder engine is back!
Weakness: A bit dull to drive compared to a BMW 5-series, and tall people might find the rear headroom a little tight.
Our view: The folks in BMW have paid attention to market feedback on the earlier model (from 2017) and have addressed many of its (minor) issues, and one major one..the engine. Everybody and their dog were stunned when BMW launched the 2017 7-series with a 2 litre 4-cylinder. Whoever came up with that idea has been sent off packing and we’re very happy to see the 3 litre 6-cylinder making its come-back under the hood. A car of this allure needs a smooth engine that can bring the challenge for comfort and luxury to its peers with confidence. And they sure did manage to do so! Mercedes, Maserati and Jaguar better wake up!
We like the BMW’s new cockpit with the dials and other info on the LCD screen. Other cars in this luxury segment have this too, though the engineers in Munich have managed to keep it relatively simple and very pleasant to the eye. Also, the overall dashboard has retained its layout from the earlier models, albeit with the necessary technical updates and fabulous finishing. BMW choose not to follow some other brands that install large LCD screens where you control everything on the touch or swipe, like in a Volvo nowadays. In the 7 you still have buttons and dials that are easy to operate, in particular when driving. We believe the other brands will probably get back to this setup soon as its more intuitive.
Is the 740Le the right model?
There’s always a risk when an importer makes the call to bring in just one model as BMW Malaysia did with the 740Le. However, given that it is again equipped with a 3 litre 6-cylinder and loaded with luxury, it may be the right call. Considering also that the price is kept reasonable thank to the hybrid, which also gives the car an incredible mileage of about 2.5l per 100km, we suggest you definitively add this car to your shortlist when shopping around in this segment. The S-class comes close for sure. Other cars like the Jaguar XJ or Maserati Ghibli don’t reach this level of finishing and quality. Then again, you’ll probably look at these cars from a different perspective. the Maserati, for instance, you need to drive yourself to really enjoy whereas the 7-Series is perfectly experienced from the very comfortable backseat.
We like the regenerative braking system that’s installed on the car. This means it will slow down if you lift the throttle a little and it does so by activating the battery charger on the drive train. it takes some getting used to, but you will love it and miss it straight away when driving another car that does not come with this feature.
Also standard is the xDrive all-wheel drive, making the car stick to the road no matter what the conditions are. The new model is more potent than its predecessor and is now rated at 389hp and 600Nm, which is a step up from the earlier model by quite a margin, allowing the 740e to hit 100 km/h from a standstill in 5.1 seconds. Topped is limited, as always with regular BMW’s, at 250 km/h
Anything you need to know?
When you buy this car, it comes with a five-year/unlimited mileage warranty with free scheduled service programme, a two-year tyre warranty programme, BMW Roadside Assistance, BMW Service Online and BMW White Card with Loyalty+ Mobile App access. Hopefully, you won’t need any of that, though it shows BMW’s confidence in the quality of the car.
For reasons nobody knows, BMW Malaysia opted to name this car the 740Le, unlike everywhere else in the world where this spec has been baptised 745Le. If you know what drove this decision, please share with us!
So come over to the BMW dealership or contact any of the friendly sales advisors to get more info. Alternatively, why not make use of the Free Concierge Service from Motor2U and let us help you in every step of the way? Contact us now!