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The new G11/G12 BMW 7 Series is not too far away now. It will likely make its world debut sometime in Q3 this year, but before that BMW has revealed bits of information on the new 7er at a technology and innovation workshop in Miramas, France.

BMW was unfortunate enough to have images of the entire 7 Series exterior and interior leaked a few months ago, but as it turns out there’s a whole lot more to the G11/G12 story to tell than a few photos are able to.

Let’s have a look at what’s been revealed so far.

Chassis with integrated CFRP

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The new 7er promises to be up to 130 kg lighter, which will help with its dynamics as well as eco credentials. Its new platform makes use of carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) in the actual structure of the passenger cell instead of just visible material on the outer skin, which is said to be a world first.

For example, CFRP is used together with ultra high-strength steels in the B pillars, which increases both the overall strength as well as torsional and bending stiffness of the passenger cell. BMW calls this the Carbon Core body structure.

Standard air suspension on both axles

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While the previous few generations of the 7 Series featured air suspension only on the rear axle for self-levelling purposes, the new 7 Series now features air suspension on both the front and rear axles. Dynamic damper control is also standard.

One of the benefits of air suspension on both axles is of course variable ride height. This can be set manually as well – at the touch of a button, the 7 Series can increase its ride height by 20 mm for better clearance on uneven surfaces or in multi-story car parks with sharply-angled ramps. In Sport mode, the body is lowered by 10 mm.

New Driving Experience Control mode – Adaptive

This particular feature previously contained Comfort+, Comfort, Sport, Sport+ and Eco Pro modes. There’s now a new setting – Adaptive, which adjusts itself based on the driver’s behaviour as well as GPS navigation data.

The way this button is implemented has also been revised – it was previously a rocker switch, but now there are individual buttons for Adaptive, Comfort, Sport and Eco Pro. The Comfort+ setting is accessed by pressing the Comfort button twice.

Eco Pro mode is now customisable in terms of steering response and damper control, so you can have an eco throttle response with a heavy steering and hard suspension if, for whatever reason, you desire it.

New iDrive system with touch and gesture control

The iDrive system features an all-new interface, now featuring a horizontal list in the main menu. The inside screens look more familiar, but the system now has the additional feature of accepting touch and gesture input as well as being controlled from the rotary knob.

The benefits of touch are very obvious in certain applications – keying in numbers for example. You just touch a virtual numerical keypad that appears on the screen instead of spinning the rotary knob around.

The gesture control feature that was previously showcased as a technology preview makes its production debut here. Gestures can be used for commands like adjusting the volume, or accepting as well as rejecting phone calls. Gestures are also programmable.

Remote control parking feature

This is perhaps the feature that will produce the most wow factor – no longer do you have to worry about getting out of your car when you park in a tight spot, because you can simply get out of your car first and get it to park itself.

To activate the remote control parking function, the car has to be positioned at a maximum angle of 10° to the selected parking space. The maximum distance that can be covered by the car during driverless manoeuvres in and out of parking spaces is 1.5 times the length of the car.

New climate control panel, integrated perfume dispenser

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From the image above we can see that there’s a new climate control panel design that appears to be a little screen controlled via touch input.

We also noticed a new button in the middle that looks like a perfume bottle – this very likely means the new 7 Series will come with an integrated perfume dispenser.

New digital instrument panel design with virtual analog clock

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BMW’s digital instrument panel has been further improved with the new 7 Series. As before, there are three different looks – a standard multi-functional one that supports information display such as navigation instructions in place of the rev counter, an amber sports version and a blue version that activates when you’re on Eco Pro mode.

There’s also a new virtual analog clock – in lieu of an actual physical analog clock on the dashboard? We’re not quite sure that has the same effect as an actual clock, but we’ll see.

BMW also released plenty of videos of the new 7 Series, though you won’t be able to see much of the exterior as it’s all covered up with camo. Enjoy the videos and the big gallery below.

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