Experienced by Kimatni D. Rawlins
Evidently Robert “Nesta” Marley loved his BMW vehicles, so much love and respect to the German purveyor of the Ultimate Driving Machine for blessing Automotive Rhythms with this magnificent Bavarian chariot while in town for the 5th Annual Kaya Fest in San Bernindino, California. The Tuff Gong always claimed with laughs that BMW stood for Bob Marley & the Wailers and is probably the reason why the reggae legend became owner to a 1602 Saloon and a Bavaria. Thus, I channeled my inner Marley with the electrified 7 Series to represent at the reggae festival started by Stephen Marley to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Bob’s Kaya album.
Our 2018 Magellan Gray Metallic 740e with xDrive was extremely comfortable for all four passengers and dynamically fulfilled our driving needs by way of its efficient 2-liter TwinPower Turbo inline 4-cylinder and electrification combo. Elevated conveniences included the Driving Assistance Plus Package ($1,700), Concierge Services, WiFi Hotspot, interchangeable ambient lighting, Parking Assistance Package ($700) and iDrive 6.0 which is the best multimedia system in the business. Naturally we were jamming to Marley music throughout the weekend by way of the Harman Kardon surround sound system in preparation for the epic performance by the five singing Marley brothers.
With a retail price of $90,700 our luxury touring sedan was exalted with additional amenities for a total price of $99,845. Since I was joined by friends and family who had never visited Los Angeles before I was given the duties of escorting them to every part of the city from Rodeo Drive to Santa Monica and then down to San Bernindino, Irvine, Long Beach and Redondo Beach. Yet, this was a road trip where I didn’t mind handling the duties behind the wheel. Not only did our 7 Series grace every setting we entered with its alluring physique enhanced by 19” light alloy wheels ($1,300), adaptive LED headlights and BMW iPerformance Design, but the Bimmer also aimed to please by putting everyone to sleep (except me) as soon as they lounged in the Black Dakota Leather comfort seats while enjoying the beauty of nature through the Panoramic Sky Lounge LED Roof ($900). Yep, the back is where the action is at. Once you slightly recline in the embedded bucket seats and extend your legs fully with room to spare then it becomes apparent that a hired driver may be needed with your purchase. The rear also provides multiple levels of door pockets, dual mirrors and of course privacy shades.
The performance attributes of the 740e on the road were superb. Obviously, the Bavarian native was engineered to be the most efficient 7 Series out of the family. Nevertheless, it still provided aggression, acceleration and sharp cornering abilities when needed most thanks to Integral Active Steering ($1,150), the 8-speed STEPTRONIC automatic transmission with paddle shifters which I utilized religiously and Driving Dynamics Control with configurable modes and settings including ECO PRO, ADAPTIVE, COMFORT, COMFORT+, SPORT and SPORT+. There was also the eDrive button to take advantage of the all-electric range once I was done exploring the hyperactive persona of the 740e.
A few small considerations that enhance the ownership experience include the soft-close automatic doors, engine shut-off when doors are opened, voice input for navigation destinations, Park Distance Control, active front headrests, Chestnut wood trim, wireless smartphone charging and Gesture Control. Owners will also love the computer key which is like a miniature tablet and operates an array of the vehicle’s functions. I don’t have too many complaints but the Active Lane Assist is far too aggressive and needs to be tuned a bit.
All-in-all the 2018 740e xDrive is an extremely, well-designed and thought-out luxury touring sedan. It embodies the ultimate expression in automotive styling, performance and efficiency. Trust me, I would drive to every major city in Cali from San Diego to Monterey for a good reggae festival in this supreme and clean Bimmer!