Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2016 BMW 7 SERIES VS 2016 Porsche Panamera Near Phoenix, AZ

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2016 BMW 7 SERIES

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VS

2016 Porsche Panamera

Safety Comparison

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The 7 Series’ pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Panamera doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The 7 Series has standard Active Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Active Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Panamera doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The 7 Series offers an optional backup collision prevention system which use rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Panamera doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

An active infrared night vision system optional on the 7 Series helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera and near-infrared lights to detect heat, the system then projects the image on the windshield, near the driver’s line of sight. The Panamera doesn’t offer a night vision system.

To help make backing safer, the 7 Series’ optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Panamera doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The 7 Series’ driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Panamera doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

The 7 Series has standard BMW Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Panamera doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the 7 Series and the Panamera have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, front and rear parking sensors, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty Comparison

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BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the 7 Series for 4 years and 50,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Porsche doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Panamera.

There are over 74 percent more BMW dealers than there are Porsche dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the 7 Series’ warranty.

Engine Comparison

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As tested in Motor Trend the 750i 4.4 turbo V8 is faster than the Porsche Panamera V6:

7 Series

Panamera

Zero to 60 MPH

4.3 sec

5.5 sec

Quarter Mile

12.7 sec

14.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

111.9 MPH

99.8 MPH

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better ride, handling and brake cooling the 7 Series offers optional 21-inch wheels. The Panamera’s largest wheels are only 20-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 7 Series can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Panamera doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

The 7 Series offers an optional space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Panamera, it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The front and rear suspension of the 7 Series uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the Panamera, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the 7 Series’ wheelbase is 5.5 inches longer than on the Panamera Executive (126.4 inches vs. 120.9 inches).

Chassis Comparison

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The design of the BMW 7 Series amounts to more than styling. The 7 Series offers aerodynamic coefficients of drag from .27 to .28 Cd (depending on bodystyle and options). That is lower than the Panamera (.29 to .32) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the 7 Series get better fuel mileage.

The front grille of the 7 Series uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Panamera doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the 750i xDrive is quieter than the Panamera Turbo 4:

7 Series

Panamera

At idle

38 dB

44 dB

Full-Throttle

72 dB

78 dB

70 MPH Cruising

68 dB

70 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

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The 7 Series has standard seating for 5 passengers; the Panamera can only carry 4.

The 7 Series has 2.8 inches more front headroom, 7.3 inches more front shoulder room, .7 inches more rear headroom, 11.2 inches more rear legroom and 6 inches more rear shoulder room than the Panamera.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the 7 Series easier. The 7 Series’ trunk lift-over height is 27.2 inches, while the Panamera’s liftover is 30.6 inches.

With its sedan body style and remote trunk release lockout, the 7 Series offers cargo security. The Panamera’s hatchback body style, non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the 7 Series’ trunk can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Panamera doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics Comparison

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The 7 Series offers an optional heads-up display which projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Panamera doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

If the windows are left down on the 7 Series the driver can raise them all using the key in the outside lock cylinder. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from outside the vehicle using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote. The driver of the Panamera can’t use the remote to operate the windows.

When the 7 Series is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Panamera’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The 7 Series’ optional Parking Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Panamera doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

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