After all the other things happening in the last few weeks it has been easy to miss less notable news stories. Among them is the 2016 BMW 7 series has been unveiled (June 11, for goodness’ sake.).
Dimensionally the car is not much larger than the existing car so owners won’t have to build a new garage. It is a bit lighter (130kg) and a lot fussier. We are a long way from Ercole Spada’s interpretation which is virtually definitive or the Michelotti-influenced first version.
The changes are all at the detail level. There’s a piece of chrome surrounding what appears to be a vent behind the front wheel arch and a mirroring feature ahead of the rear wheel arch. The chrome frame for the side glass has gained heft and the highlights on the flanks swerve about from feature to feature.
It reminds one of the steps taken by Opel to distinguish the next from the current Corsa though it is a completely new car. Ford’s Mondeo is similarly a rejig of existing themes and it’s only a side by side comparison that shows how the old and new cars differ.
The previous car is on the bland side and now looks even blander in comparison. The signs are there that there’s not much incentive to do anything drastic in this class of car. Stagnation with decoration appears to the order of the day.
And that’s why I didn’t notice this bit of news until now. It used to be the arrival of a new 7 was quite an event. This time around as for last, it’s about as surprising as the arrival of the morning newspaper.
[This post was revised 13.29 July 1, 2015 to note that the car shown at the top is the “concept” version of the 2016 7 series with detail differences from the production model which has a modified rear side glass -RH]