A certified, used 7 Series is your best bet
History/Description: The BMW 7 Series is one of the mainstream motoring world’s most instantly recognizable sedan status symbols, and one commonly sought out by shoppers after world-class luxury and comfort. The last-generation of this luxurious land yacht was available to us Canadians from model years 2002 to 2008 inclusive.
Look for a 4.4L V8 engine with 325 horsepower and a 6-speed automatic transmission on the 745i. A 6.0L, 438-horsepower V12 was available in the 760i, though the V8 should prove adequate for most. Later in the 7 Series’s life, the V8 engine was punched out to a 4.8L unit, developing 360 horsepower and facilitating a rename to 750i. Both standard and extended-wheelbase models were available; the latter get an ‘L’ designation in the name badge.
Look for all the toys you can think of. Ventilated, 20-way power-adjustable seats with position memory, premium audio, wood trim, soft-close and self-sealing doors, heated rear seats, a parking distance sensor, navigation, adaptive xenon headlights and plenty more were all on board. Cars didn’t get much more well-equipped or high-tech than the 7 Series. Expect plenty of room for 4 or 5 adults and a generous trunk, too.
What Owners Like: Style, exclusivity, comfort, ride quality, cabin feel and overall space and luxury were highly rated by owners of the last-generation 7 Series. Performance, handling and engine refinement were also highly rated.
What Owners Dislike: Some owners complain of higher-than-expected levels of wind noise, fussy and hard-to-learn electronics, limited visibility as well as a lazy, heavy steering feel.
Common Issues: Approach any used 7 Series looking for signs of electronics trouble. Plan to spend a half-hour ensuring all electronic components work properly, including all motorized seat adjustments, instruments, lights, the stereo, climate control, rear sunshade, electronic parking brake and phone/navigation system.
Numerous owners have reported issues with the Bluetooth phone system failing to “hear” them, so be sure that’s not the case in the model you’re considering.
Auto journalist & Consumer Ratings
2012 BMW 7 Series Specifications
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