The 2018 BMW 740e xDrive iPerformance stands out in the 7 Series lineup. This model builds on the 7’s known reputation for refined performance, luxurious appointments and advanced technology with a plug-in hybrid system that promises increased economy and environmental responsibility.
The 740e plug-in hybrid ditches the base 7 Series’ inline-six cylinder engine in favor of a smaller 2.0-liter turbo-four rated at 255 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. That loss in displacement is okay, because the combustion engine isn’t alone — it’s joined by a 111-horsepower electric motor-generator that boosts total system output to a healthy 322 horsepower and 369 pound-feet.
That powerplant is mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission and BMW’s xDrive all-wheel-drive system, the only drivetrain option available to hybrid buyers.
The hybrid system features the same 9.2-kWh lithium-ion battery pack as the 530e and delivers a similar 14-mile pure-electric cruising range from a 2.7-hour charge at a 240-volt charging station. I never had a recharge take more than 2 hours, probably due to the fact that hybrids never really let their batteries go all the way flat. Charging via a standard 110-volt wall outlet takes about five to six hours.