Updated BMW 7 Series getting better hybrid, more tech?

BMW\'s flagship will benefit from a mid-cycle update next year.

BMW is preparing to give the 7 Series a mid-cycle update. We'll see the refreshed sedan before the end of 2018.

The plug-in hybrid 740e iPerformance model (pictured) will become the 745e iPerformance, according to insiders who spoke to BMW Blog on the condition of anonymity. The new name will come with significant changes under the sheet metal.

The gasoline-electric powertrain will make 390 horsepower -- about 70 more than today -- thanks in part to a more powerful electric motor. It will draw electricity from a brand-new battery pack with a higher energy density. In turn, the 745 will accelerate appreciably faster and be able to spend more time with the gasoline-burning turbo four turned off. Range currently checks in at about 14 miles.

On the tech front, the 745e will receive the 530e's wireless charger. Every member of the line-up regardless of drivetrain will come with a digital instrument cluster named Live Cockpit. Rivals Audi and Mercedes-Benz already offer the technology on most of their cars.

Interestingly, the same report claims BMW will bring the short-wheelbase 7 Series back to the United States. The current-generation model has been long wheelbase-only since it made its debut in 2015. Other markets also get a shorter, more affordable 7.

BMW's updated 7 Series will make its public debut at a major auto show next year. It will arrive in showrooms in time for the 2019 model year.

Photography by Ronan Glon.

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