BMW recognized the importance of the emerging Chinese economy by choosing the Shanghai Auto Show to debut its flagship flagship, the 760Li.
Looking mostly similar to the standard extended-wheelbase 7 Series, with many of the same technological innovations, what really makes the 760 unique is what’s under the hood. There you will find a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter V12 engine, with direct injection and double VANOS.
The new engine makes 554 hp at 5000 rpm and 553 ft-lbs of torque at just 1500 rpm. Compared to the last generation BMW V12, this is an increase of 25 percent at 2300 rpm less. (Who says the horsepower war is over?)
BMW boasts that the new V12 is silent at idle, but thanks to electronicaly operate exhaust flaps, it makes a real howl at wide open throttle.
Paired to the all-new engine is an equally new 8-speed automatic transmission. The new transmission shifts faster than the old six-speed automatic and thanks to the extra gears provides an increase in fuel-economy of six percent. BMW also says that the new 8-speed unit is ideal for a hybrid application, due out later this year.
Combined, the new 8-speed transmission and 554hp V12 engine propel the massive 760Li to 60 mph in just 4.5 seconds.
Other highlights on the new 760 include a self-leveling air suspension in the rear and an optional Active Steering system, which adjusts the steering angle based on speed for both the front and rear wheels.
Outside the 760Li is distinguishable by the chrome bar on the rear bumper, as well as the square exhaust pipes.
Inside the new flagship gets stainless-steel door sills with illuminated V12 logos and Alcantara for the headliner and sun visors.
GALLERY: 2010 BMW 760Li
More on the BMW 760Li after the jump:
DEDICATED TO PERFECTION. THE NEW BMW 760Li SEDAN
Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 10, 2009… The new BMW 7 Series already sets the benchmark in luxury performance driving – and now BMW raised the standard for maximum exclusivity, performance and luxury in this premium class. The new BMW 760Li Sedan is taking over the top position within BMW’s model portfolio, delivering the highest level of driving refinement in its segment.
The heart and foundation of this exceptional new vehicle comes from an all-new BMW V12 engine. Developed as a completely-new engine from the ground up, the latest BMW V12 is a masterpiece of modern engine technology. 544 horsepower (preliminary) comes at an engine speed of 5,000 rpm, with maximum torque of 553 lb-ft (preliminary) from just 1,500 rpm.
Combined with a brand-new 8-speed automatic transmission, this BMW V12 offers unparalleled driving refinement and premium driving dynamics through its ability to convert seemingly unlimited power reserves into action with amazing responsiveness.
Once again, BMW’s V12 engine is the epitome of refined performance. The new BMW 760Li Sedan provides the answer to what one should expect of a genuine luxury performance sedan, with remarkable new features underscoring BMW’s claim to leadership in the luxury segment.
The drivetrain with all-new technical features is a masterpiece of engineering. It includes a 6.0-liter all-aluminum engine with Twin Turbo Technology, High Precision Direct Injection, and BMW’s infinite double-VANOS camshaft adjustment as well as an 8-speed automatic transmission featured for the first time in a BMW.
Benefiting from these combined technologies, the BMW 760Li Sedan offers a new standard of driving refinement, dynamic performance and efficiency. Acceleration to 60 mph comes in less than 4.5 seconds (preliminary).
The new BMW 7 Series: the perfect sedan for premium driving refinement.
Featuring best-in-class suspension technology, innovative driver assistance systems and luxurious comfort, the BMW 7 Series offers all the qualities required to enjoy a truly incomparable driving experience with a new V12 engine.
The new BMW 760Li comes with Driving Dynamics Control operated at the touch of a rocker switch on the center console, shock absorbers that adjust according to the lightning-fast Dynamic Damping Control, vehicle speed-sensitive Servotronic power steering, and BMW’s Dynamic Drive anti-roll stability system.
In addition to these outstanding technologies, the BMW 760Li Sedan features self-leveling air suspension at the rear. Available Integral Active Steering offers speed-related adjustment of the steering angle on the front and rear wheels. With Integral Active Steering, the car’s passenger comfort reaches an even higher level when changing lanes at high speeds thanks to reduced lateral forces.
The premium touring comfort offered by the new top-of-the-range BMW 7 Series is further underlined by Comfort Seats, BMW’s on-board Navigation system, four-zone automatic control, cruise control complete with an automatic brake function, Park Distance Control, and Soft Close on each of the doors.
Design: discreet signals on the outside, stylish exclusivity inside.
The outstanding looks of the BMW 760Li Sedan benefit from the harmonious combination of elegance, sportiness and natural presence which defines the design of the new BMW 7 Series.
Visual references to the V12 engine on the outside of the BMW 760Li Sedan are stylish and discreet. The kidney grille for the radiator boasts an extra-wide chrome frame in slightly concave design as well as bars extending powerfully to the front. From the side, exclusive 19-inch light-alloy wheels as well as the V12 model designation on the chrome-plated gills with their integrated side direction indicators at the transition point between the front fenders and the doors likewise serve to identify this special model.
An additional chrome bar between the unique dual tailpipes on the exhaust system provides a special sign of distinction at the rear. The exhaust tailpipes integrated in the rear air dam at the right and left, in turn, are made up of two adjacent, rectangular pipe units embellished with chrome trim and cut at a slight angle, flush to their surrounds.
Inside the BMW 760Li Sedan the luxurious ambience is supplemented by various design features tailored specifically to this model, again expressing the character of the V12 models. Stainless-steel door entry trim with an illuminated V12 sill, the instrument panel finished in Nappa leather and surrounded by elegant seams, the roof lining and sun visors in Alcantara as well as top-quality wood trim in exclusive burled walnut with Individual inlays help to give the BMW 760Li Sedan a further stylish sign of distinction.
The new V12 engine: perfection as the overarching target, innovation as the driving force.
For more than two decades a V12 engine in a BMW 7 Series has guaranteed a driving and travel experience unique in every respect. No other engine-chassis combination offers such an outstanding blend of power and refinement.
Now these features reach a new height, with BMW’s new V12 offering significantly more power and torque compared with its predecessors. The engine features responsiveness combined with an endless surge of power as well as tailored acoustics. The engineering progress achieved is obvious from the first push of the Start button.
In keeping with 7 Series tradition, the new V12 maintains an outstanding position of BMW’s V12 models in the new generation of the BMW 7 Series, giving the driver of a BMW 760Li Sedan the assurance of absolute leadership in the luxury sedan class. The new engine combines the outstanding qualities of a V12 with up-to-date efficiency, offering a level of fuel efficiency and emission management even better than some 8-cylinder vehicles in the BMW 7 Series segment.
By tradition, the BMW V12 enjoys a special status which is unmatched by other engines of different design and configuration. The BMW V12 represents the highest level of competence in engine technology and justifies its position through qualities only this drive concept is able to offer.
The unique status of the BMW V12 as an incomparably powerful and refined engine is based on a design principle which offers power and performance achieved without the slightest hint of effort. Benefiting from an angle of 60° between the two rows of cylinders, the V12 eliminates vibrations to the highest standard conceivable in physics; better than any other engine.
All components and design features on the aluminum engine block are built and constructed for maximum stiffness with minimum weight. Using a closed-deck structure combined with bolts holding the cylinder head to the floor plate of the crankcase, the engine achieves maximum stability of the cylinder liners. Double bolts on the main bearings with an additional connection to the side panels through threaded supports and bolts reduce the influence of lateral forces from the crankshaft on the crankcase.
Further vibration-reducing features of the BMW V12 engine block are iron-coated aluminum pistons, forged connecting rods assembled through the cracking process, and a forged crankshaft for absolute perfection. These features make the sound level of the idling engine a very special experience, where the driver must look at the tachometer to see whether the engine is running at all.
The new V12 engine comes with 5,972 cc maintaining exactly the same cylinder volume as on the last-generation BMW V12. Displacing 497.7 cubic centimeters per cylinder, the engine offers exactly the right size and dimensions acknowledged by engine specialists as ideal. Bore of 89 mm/3.50″ and stroke of 80 mm/3.15″ provides a ratio between these two parameters of 0.9, while the compression ratio is a remarkably high 10.0:1.
Introduction of Twin Turbo Technology on the BMW V12.
BMW’s new V12 comes with a number of special technical features that capitalize on the potential it offers through its design principle and structure. This includes the first-ever use on a BMW V12 of Twin Turbo Technology and High Precision Direct Injection.
Featuring this combination of technologies which has been admired on BMW’s 6- and 8-cylinders, the V12 responds directly to small movements of the accelerator pedal. It maintains a consistent torque curve and offers a level of fuel efficiency and emissions management unusual for an engine of this size.
Thanks to the small V angle of just 60°, the two exhaust gas turbochargers developed specifically for the new V12 fit in compact arrangement on the outside of the two rows of cylinders, each supplying six cylinders with compressed air.
The turbochargers stand out through their unusually good compressor and turbine efficiency. Their positions are ideal for keeping the exhaust pipes short and straight. Balanced supply of turbocharger air into the intake plenum, in turn, helps optimize the engine’s acoustics and charge cycle. The exhaust gas manifolds on each row of cylinders come with two 3-into-1 connections arranged to make use of the engine’s firing sequence. Combined with low-backpressure catalytic converters, this special configuration of the exhaust manifolds sets the foundation for outstanding responsiveness to the accelerator pedal and premium power and torque from the BMW V12.
Peak torque, now increased to 553 lb-ft (preliminary), comes at just 1,500 rpm and is maintained consistently all the way to 5,000 rpm. Compared with the previous-generation V12, this means an increase in torque of 25 percent which is now developed at an engine speed approximately 2,300 rpm lower.
Engine power is also built up more quickly than on the previous engine, as is borne out by the much steeper power curve leading up to maximum output of 544 hp (preliminary) at 5,000 rpm.
Intelligent solutions for power.
The introduction of Twin Turbo Technology raises the BMW V12 to a level of output and torque a naturally-aspirated engine would achieve only with much larger displacement. The increase in engine size and weight inevitable in such a case, together with negative effects on the center of gravity, fuel consumption and the agility of the car, are all avoided through turbocharger technology.
To ensure sensitive and precise dosage of power at all times, the compressed turbocharger air is cooled by a water-to-air intercooler which, as in other BMW twin-turbo applications, uses a dedicated coolant circuit. This serves to minimize the overall volume of air required and reduce lag, again enabling the engine to respond ideally to the driver’s foot on the accelerator pedal.
The catalytic converters on the new BMW V12 come with the most advanced and sophisticated exhaust gas sensors and quickly reach their optimum operating temperature thanks to their special position close to the engine. Efficient treatment of exhaust gases ensures full compliance with all international emission standards. The new BMW 760Li Sedan fulfills the EU5 emission standard in Europe and the ULEV II standard in the US.
To reduce backpressure the exhaust system features large, straight pipes and manifolds increased in size to the largest possible diameter. Exhaust flaps around the muffler controlled by the electronic control unit provide the right engine sound for current all conditions. When idling, therefore, the V12 remains absolutely silent. The same applies to cruising conditions, with only very discreet sound from the engine being emitted to the outside. At higher engine speeds the driver receives sensational acoustic feedback on the development of power, with the engine providing its muscular V12 sound when accelerating fast and under full power. This special sound effect under such dynamic conditions authentically reflects the intensity of power coming from within the engine compartment.
Optimized combustion ensured by High Precision Direct Injection.
BMW’s High Precision Direct Injection is a second-generation direct injection technology serving to optimize the combustion process and use the energy in the fuel with maximum efficiency. Piezo-injectors positioned in the middle of the cylinder head allow precise dosage of the fuel injected into the combustion chambers.
Opening up to the outside, the piezo-injectors are positioned in the cylinder head between the valves and directly next to the spark plugs. They are supplied with fuel through stainless-steel pipes, and inject fuel into the combustion chambers in finely atomized form at a pressure of up to 200 Bar. This system pressure is generated by single-plunge fuel pumps on each row of cylinders and is managed by short pipes and fuel travel.
The injected fuel spreads out in conical form, thus burning in a particularly smooth and clean process. This has a positive effect on engine emissions and sound, the cooling effect of the fuel/air mixture provided by direct fuel injection helps to achieve higher compression efficiency than on a turbocharged engine with traditional injection. The bottom line is an even higher degree of engine efficiency, generating more power on less fuel.
Double-VANOS and variable-flow oil pump for maximum efficiency.
The new BMW V12 features double-VANOS infinitely adjustable camshaft timing control. This ensures optimal timing of the intake and exhaust valves for maximum power and efficiency at all engine speed and load combinations.
A further advantage of double-VANOS is its support in giving the engine a particularly immediate responsiveness. The hot-forged camshafts come with additional triple cams on the intake side to drive the high-pressure fuel pumps. The valves on the exhaust side are sodium-filled and feature chrome-plated shafts for optimum cooling and longevity.
The supply of oil to the new V12 has also been optimized. The volume flow-controlled oil pump operates on individual demand for maximum efficiency. The six-chamber pendulum-slide pump delivers only as much oil as the engine requires at any given point in time under specific driving conditions.
The engine cooling system on the new BMW V12 features optimized cross-sections and a surface structure that ensures maximum heat exchange to warm-up the engine far more quickly than before. The arrangement of the coolant pipes next to the oil supply serves to thermally-join the oil and coolant, which again helps warm up engine oil and maintains the ideal temperature at all times. The flow of coolant on the two rows of cylinders runs diagonally from the rear outside to the front inside.
BMW’s outstanding competence in 12-cylinder technology: a long tradition of premium performance.
This is the fourth time that a BMW V12 engine marks the top of the engine portfolio featured in the BMW 7 Series. Every new generation has further reinforced BMW’s position as the leading manufacturer of luxury performance sedans. A BMW 7 Series with a V12 engine not only stands for exclusivity but for genuine innovation as well.
BMW’s competence in the development and production of V12 engines is based on a long tradition extending all the way back to 1925 when the Company hit the headlines for the first time by building an aircraft engine with 12 cylinders. Back then BMW’s V12 developed maximum output of 750 hp, with two BMW V12s powering the Dornier Wal seaplane in its record flight across the Atlantic just five years later.
In the second half of the 20th century BMW became the pioneer by introducing the V12 in its most outstanding luxury cars. The BMW 750i launched in 1987, for example, was the first German V12 sedan after the war. In the years to follow a long story of success in motorsport likewise contributed to the exceptional reputation of BMW’s V12s. The BMW V12 LMR, for example, dominated the racing scene right from the start in its very first race in 1999, the 12 Hours of Sebring, and in the same season clinched overall victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
World debut: 8-speed automatic transmission in the new BMW 760Li.
The unique qualities of the new V12 engine with Twin Turbo Technology and High Precision Direct Injection are combined in the new BMW 760Li Sedan with an equally innovative concept for the transmission: the newly developed 8-speed automatic transmission makes its world debut in a BMW production car. Ideally tailored to the power and performance characteristics of the V12 engine, the 8-speed automatic transmission combines premium shifting comfort, sportiness, and efficiency at a level never achieved before.
The new 8-speed automatic transmission excels through the innovative configuration of gears allowing the use of additional gears and a larger range of gear increments than on the former six-speed automatic transmission. It does so without any negative effects on the size of the transmission, its weight, and the inner efficiency of the system.
The eight forward gears and the reverse gear all incorporate four simple gears and five shifting elements. The innovative arrangement of these components, seen for the first time on an 8-speed automatic transmission, ensures that only two clutches are open in each gear at any given point in time, significantly reducing frictional losses under all driving conditions to an absolute minimum.
Over and above the wider range of gear increments and the high degree of internal efficiency, this arrangement contributes further to the outstanding overall efficiency of the new transmission system. The intelligent concept of this new 8-speed automatic transmission is right in line with the BMW EfficientDynamics development strategy.
Introduction of the first 8-speed automatic transmission in the BMW 760Li Sedan marks the starting point to a generation change in the area of power transmission systems. The six-speed automatic transmissions currently featured in all BMW model series already set the standard for shift comfort, reaction time, shifting speed. The first and foremost objective in developing the new generation of automatic transmissions, therefore, was to retain all the design features of the six-speed automatic transmission and set new standards in terms of driving comfort, performance and efficiency.
Optimum gearing configuration as the result of scientific research.
To achieve significant progress over BMW’s proven six-speed automatic transmissions BMW’s engineers initiated an in-depth development process providing the basis for the new transmission right from the start. The initial consideration was that the desired improvement in efficiency was only going to be possible with a transmission system offering an even larger number of gears and a wider range of gear increments versus a six-speed automatic. Keeping the number of additional components to a minimum in order to optimize the inner efficiency of the transmission was also an objective.
Apart from BMW itself, a number of specialized partners in development such as ZF Friedrichshafen AG participated in the search for an optimum concept fulfilling all of these requirements. Working together closely, the complete team developed analytical methods in order to establish and balance the pros and cons of all theoretically conceivable variants of a planetary gear system. To begin with, both the number of gears was open as was the structure of the new transmission with its underlying concept. The fundamental objectives, therefore, were to achieve the highest conceivable standard of efficiency and to keep the new transmission as compact and light as possible.
Studies jointly conducted by engineers and scientists eventually led to a solution offering the best balance of internal efficiency and overall running qualities: a new automatic transmission with two additional gears and a gear increment range increased over six and seven speed units, with the number of gears being increased by only one to a total of four but with the number of clutches remaining unchanged. In other words, an entirely new 8-speed automatic.
Triple progress with two additional gears: shifting dynamics improved, comfort optimized, efficiency maximized.
Thanks to the larger range of gear increments now offered by the new transmission, the driver is able to use the highest gear at significantly reduced engine speed far more often than before. In the BMW 760Li, this not only optimizes the car’s efficiency particularly at higher speeds, but also enhances the smoothness and refinement of the BMW V12.
With the number of gears increased to eight, the individual steps between gears are smaller than before, despite the overall range of gear increments. This benefits the sporting character of the transmission and, as a result, the dynamic nature of the car in typical BMW style.
While accelerating the harmonious balance of gear ratios provides a very smooth and consistent increase in road speed, which corresponds ideally with the ongoing surge of power from the new V12, befitting a flagship model like the new BMW 760Li.
A further advantage of the small gear increments is the enhancement of shifting comfort in BMW’s most outstanding Luxury Performance Sedan, with only a slight change in engine speed when shifting from one gear to another.
The reaction and shifting times are even shorter than with the previous six-speed automatic transmission which benefits both driving comfort and driving dynamics because only one clutch has to be disengaged when shifting up or down either one or two gears. At the same time direct gear detection enables the driver to shift up or down by more than two gears, again with extremely short reaction and shifting times. And last but not least, the downshift from eighth to second gear particularly important for spontaneous acceleration also takes place as a direct gear change requiring the system to open only one clutch.
This particular configuration is of great significance for premium driving pleasure in the BMW 760Li, enabling the driver to use the higher gears for perfect efficiency and driving refinement particularly often while enjoying the car’s maximum performance spontaneously at all times.
Flexible, up-to-date, oriented to the future.
With the number of transmission components being increased only slightly over the former six-speed automatic transmission, the new 8-speed automatic offers an unusually high level of internal efficiency. So-called gear-mesh efficiency, for example, is more than 98 percent in each gear. In sixth, configured as a direct gear, frictional losses are reduced to zero.
The low weight of the new transmission is virtually identical to that of the previous six-speed automatic which benefits the overall efficiency of the 760Li. The integration of additional gearing is compensated for by the optimization of weight in other areas.
In all the minimum converter slip, the high degree of internal efficiency, low frictional losses with only two clutches open at a time, the longer transmission ratios on the higher gears and the transmission management giving preference to low engine speeds at all times offer a reduction of fuel consumption versus the former six-speed automatic by approximately 6 percent.
As a result of these improvements and highlights in technology, the new 8-speed automatic transmission is not only the optimum system currently available, but also a future-oriented solution for the transmission of power in a premium car.
The new transmission may be combined with all kinds of engines and levels of performance, and may be integrated not only in cars with rear-wheel drive, but also in all-wheel-drive models. At the same time the 8-speed automatic transmission may be combined with hybrid drive, making it part of BMW’s Active Hybrid technology combining an 8-cylinder gasoline engine with an electric motor. This innovative drive concept will reach production in the first hybrid model in the BMW 7 Series later in 2009.
Setting the new standard in driving supremacy: the new BMW 7 Series with BMW V12 engine and 8-speed automatic transmission.
Twelve cylinders and eight speeds – this combination re-defines the most premium standard of exclusivity and refinement in the luxury class. The drive technology featured in the new BMW 760Li Sedan makes a significant contribution to the significant innovation of power technology ensured by the BMW brand, the unique power and performance characteristics of the new V12 engine and the innovative concept of 8-speed automatic transmission joining forces to provide a truly fascinating driving experience.
Superior power is thus converted into equally superior driving dynamics with an exceptionally high standard of driving refinement. Offering premium smoothness and full availability of enormous power reserves at all times, the BMW V12 simply begs the driver and passengers to enjoy an unequalled driving experience wherever they go while experiencing sporting performance of the highest caliber.
The 8-speed automatic transmission perfectly supplements both the effortless and dynamic character of the engine. At the same time the exceptional efficiency of both top BMW 7 Series model results not just from the V12 engine, but from the transmission as well.