Towards the middle of January 2019, BMW whipped the covers off its facelifted 7 Series flagship sedan. And now the Munich-based firm has dropped fresh details on its 745Le plug-in hybrid derivative, which is scheduled to arrive in South Africa by June.

Since only long-wheelbase models are destined for local shores, the standard 745e won’t be offered in South Africa. From what we understand, our market will receive the 745Le xDrive (rather than the rear-driven 745Le). As we reported earlier, this derivative is expected to be priced from R1 748 342.

The 745Le xDrive’s plug-in hybrid system comprises a six-cylinder in-line petrol engine and a “further advanced” 12,0 kWh high-voltage battery with enlarged capacity. The petrol mill offers 210 kW, while the electric motor (integrated in the eight-speed automatic transmission) is rated at 83 kW and 265 N.m. With the drive mode set to sport, overall system outputs of 290 kW and 600 N.m are available.

While the rear-wheel-drive BMW 745Le takes a claimed 5,3 seconds to sprint from standstill to 100 km/h, the all-wheel-drive model is two-tenths quicker. Maximum speed, meanwhile, is electronically limited to 250 km/h.

BMW says in hybrid mode, the new 745Le xDrive can travel at a speed of up to 110 km/h (some 20 km/h faster than its predecessor) on electricity alone, with the combustion engine coming on song only at a higher speed “requiring a particularly high load”. In electric mode, meanwhile, the electric motor alone can whisk the 7 Series up to 140 km/h, with an electric range of between 50 and 54 km. The firm claims the 745Le xDrive can thus sip as little as 2,3 L/100 km (based on the new WLTP test cycle and adapted to NEDC for comparison purposes).

Interestingly, BMW claims the positioning of the battery means luggage capacity is “only slightly restricted” at 420 litres.
BMW 745Le