Infotainment in the 7 Series BMW: some things work like magic

WITHReally little display: That is the first impression when you have made yourself comfortable in the 7-series BMW, which was modernized in 2019, and took a look at the infotainment equipment. In contrast, Mercedes-Benz with its Mbux system has huge displays, and Audi also drives significantly more in the A8 and A6 than the Bavarians in their luxury-class flagship.

The digital instrument cockpit with a diagonal of 12.3 inches is located behind the steering wheel, and to the right of it the on-board monitor is only 10.25 inches firmly fixed on the dashboard. That doesn’t look like much at first. But compared to Mbux, I immediately like the more subtle, restrained design with fine menus and clear structures. The nerd is not addressed here, but the frequent driver who wants to be distracted as little as possible on the go.

Like its rivals in the luxury class, BMW also relies on the principle that there are many ways to get to your destination. The on-board monitor is touch-sensitive, so you can tap the symbols with your finger, it recognizes gestures and reacts to the approach of the hand. After a few days, we liked the control element best that Mercedes and Audi have banned from the interior: the controller next to the selector lever of the automatic transmission, which can be turned, pressed and pushed. It allows precise work with minimal distraction.

The on-board monitor could be bigger.

Photo gallery

In the test

Infotainment im 7er BMW

Then speech recognition. As with Mercedes, it surpasses itself, so not only recognizes commands relating to navigation and telephony, but also becomes a personal assistant who can be addressed with “Hey BMW”. Thankfully, BMW dispenses with some antics and allows meaningful queries, for example to explain how the high-beam assistant and other vehicle functions work. The assistant not only saves regularly driven routes and destinations, but the personalization goes so far that you can create “if then” links such that the steering wheel heating is always switched on when the outside temperature falls below a specified value. As with Siri and the like, personal relationships can be saved: Who are father, mother, brother or sister? In this way, the assistant records more natural language formulations.


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