Performance and Handling
At over 4,600 pounds and over 17 feet long (!), this is no lightweight dancer. But with its twin-turbo 4.4 liter V-8 producing 407 hp and 443 pound-feet of torque at just 1,750 rpm, this refined luxury sedan kick some major booty. Without holding the brake, I managed a 0 – 60 time in just a tick over 5 seconds. Holding the brake, it’s likely 60 mph could be achieved in under 5. Amazing! And the car accelerates like a silent rocket. All you feel is pressure in your backside as it takes off. Acceleration from 60 to 80 seems to happen by accident. To 110, you hardly notice. There is no wind or obtrusive engine noise to let you know you are approaching twice the legal limit.
Further, the multi-mode suspension, which offers Sport +, Sport, Normal, and Comfort modes, provides the car with amazing handling for its size. Body roll was remarkably minimized and steering was exceptionally quick. With the traction control off, I was able to encourage some throttle-on oversteer but the car tucked back in line quickly. With the more sedate settings, I did find that the electronic monitoring systems cut in a bit too abruptly, slowing the car rapidly in the midst of high speed cornering hi-jinks. However, most owners will likely not encounter these risk mitigation features.
While it handled incredibly well, at the same time, the rear air suspension and superior chassis tuning provided a remarkably luxurious ride. Going over speed bumps was amazing; hitting them at 30 mph didn’t even make the car flinch. The suspension has an incredible dampening capability that compensates and smooths like nothing I’ve ever driven.
BMW has iterated the design exceptionally well. It has evolved from the controversial “Bangle-butt” first gen to this Bull Shark on land. I found the hood and roof line to be pleasing with the small “fin” satellite antennae further continuing the theme. And the taught wrap around the wide 275mm rear tires is exceptionally pretty. The rear end looks better integrated as well. The only downside is the front end which seems too square and perpendicular in an otherwise flowing body. This said, it is, overall, a very handsome car.
At $110,000, assuming 20% down and 2% interest rate, with $10,700 in CA tax, your monthly payment over 5 years would be $1,755. Wow; that’s close to a house payment! But if you are spending that kind of money, the typical choices are the Mercedes-Benz S-class and Audi A8. The Mercedes come with a dizzying array of engine choices and options and high maintenance cost. Some might say that the styling is overly conservative as well. The Audi A8 is available in the long wheel base version and offers all-wheel drive, something that might give it the edge in inclement climates. However, I’d venture to say that neither offers the complete balance of luxury AND performance of the Ultimate Driving Machine.
If I was in the market for a luxurious and spacious sedan that had very few compromises, and I was financially able, I would be hard pressed to find a more complete automobile. The BMW 750Li offers a rare combination of creature comforts, convenience, luxury, space, and performance that few can match.
|The official BMW of North America website – www.bmwusa.com|