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760Li coming to UK

Richard Aucock
24 Aug 2009
BMW V12 engine

Twin-turbo V12 7-series packs a whopping 537bhp

V12 saloons are dead? Not if you’re Chinese or American. For UK buyers, the only 7-series that really matters is the diesel, but demand in other markets has led to the introduction of a twin-turbo 6-litre V12 version, and from September it’ll be on sale here too, priced at £94,440.

That mighty engine is mated to an eight-speed ZF automatic gearbox, and it’s a creamy combination. With 537bhp, not to mention 553lb ft of torque between 1500 and 5000rpm, it’s a powerhouse too, the blend of power and instant torque summoning jet-style speed-gathering. 0-62mph takes just 4.6sec. Those after an enticing V12 growl will only get it at high revs, though; in normal use, the turbo whistle is more prominent.

The UK will only get the long-wheelbase 760Li model, whose rear air suspension plushes the damping but can’t overcome in-town irritation from the 19in alloys. And even the monster tyres those wheels are fitted with struggle with the engine’s thrust. Expect the ESP light to wear out.

Rear steering means the 760 is more agile than most 2.1-ton limos, but while it’s precise and incisive, it’s not involving. This isn’t a four-door V12 supercar. Not that you’d guess from the pace of the thing…

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