The facelifted G11/G12 BMW 7 Series appears to be running development tests again, and this time it is testing in fully electric form, as indicated by the ‘Electric Test Vehicle’ stickers on its doors. BMW’s answer to the Mercedes-Benz EQS wears some detail changes over the current, regular G11/12 model, namely the concealed headlamps and tail lamps.

A question mark remains over which body the fully electric flagship – dubbed the i7 – will use; will it be the current body as seen here, or is it merely a shell for development work that will go into the next-generation 7 Series? That the current car’s end-of-production is slated for mid-2022 leaves a considerable length of time, so it is likely that there’s life in the G11/12-generation car yet.

Though exact details have yet to be confirmed, the next 7 Series has been said to take after the BMW i4 in employing different battery capacities, and could likewise start with an 80 kWh battery pack. While the i4 currently tops out at 120 kWh in its most generous capacity form for estimated range of 700 km, the i7 could get an even larger battery pack in order to get similar range for a heavier vehicle.

BMW’s fifth-generation eDrive electric powertrains are what will go into its future fully electric models such as the i7 and the i4, with completely redesigned motors, power electronics, charging unit and high-voltage batteries. Key to achieving improved packaging is the integration of the motor, power electronics and transmission into a single unit, and additionally does away with rare-earth elements.

At the top end of what’s possible from BMW’s new electric powertrains, the German marque unveiled the Power BEV experimental vehicle based on the G30 5 Series, one which packs three electric motors for a total system output of 710 hp, yielding a 0-100 km/h time of under three seconds. As for the i7 itself, this could be released in two forms – a base i7 and a higher-spec i7s, much in the same vein as the smaller i3.