Talk of V12s being put out to pasture is largely exaggerated, as BMW has demonstrated with the announcement of the first M Performance 7 Series model: the M760Li xDrive.
At the heart of this elegant monster of a full-size sedan is a 6.6-litre TwinPower Turbo 12-cyilnder engine producing a staggering 600 horsepower, with 590 lb-ft of torque on tap developed at a mere 1,500 rpm.
The powerplant is somewhat of an engineering marvel, having a block completely crafted out of aluminum negating some of the weight normally associated with a motor of this size. The turbochargers are positioned strategically outside the two rows of cylinders to cut down on piping and allow a straight-through design for increased efficiency, and a high-tech air-to-water intercooler reduces turbo lag allowing quicker throttle response.
For a vehicle of this nature, the sound it produces is as important as how fast it goes. The M sport exhaust system features large diameter tubing and a special flap-activation system that lets the driver decide when he or she wants the car to roar — under normal conditions things sound civilized, but putting a foot down opens up the flaps for full flow and acoustic output.
In a similar vein, the ride quality in the M760Li is both comfortable and sporty, depending on the mood and driving conditions. Like the standard 7 Series, Active Comfort Drive is equipped, which does everything from automatically adjusting the springs and dampers settings to controlling vibration levels in order to deliver a refined experience. Electromechanical active roll stabilization and adjustable sway bars help keep the car planted when the situation becomes more dynamic.
All-wheel drive is standard, biased towards the rear axle of course to provide that classic BMW feel on the road. Power is distributed accordingly to prevent slippage whenever traction is lost.
The 2018 BMW M760Li xDrive starts at $159,900 and will be available starting this summer.