Frankfurt: BMW Active Hybrid models

  • Two powerful hybrids
  • Both use V8 petrol engines
  • More than 450bhp on offer
What are they?

Two of the most powerful hybrids, showcasing technology that should trickle down to cheaper BMWs

What's new?
Not content with the stunning Vision Efficient Dynamics concept car, BMW is showing not one, but two, jaw-dropping hybrid models at Frankfurt.

The Active Hybrid X6 and Active Hybrid 7 both have the kind of power and acceleration that you'd normally associate with performance cars.

Each has a turbocharged V8 petrol engine, combined with an electric motor to provide more than 450bhp and a 0-62mph time of less than six seconds.

Active Hybrid X6
The Active Hybrid X6 has a twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 petrol with 401bhp, that works in tandem with two electric motors, producing 91bhp and 85bhp.

BMW claims the Active Hybrid X6 is the most powerful hybrid vehicle in the world, with all three motors producing a combined maximum of 478bhp.

A brake energy regeneration system helps the engine work as efficiently as possible, while the Active Hybrid X6 can run using electric power alone at up to 37mph.

BMW Active Hybrid X6 vital statistics
• 0-62mph - 5.6 seconds
• CO2 emissions: 231g/km
• Average fuel consumption: 28.5mpg

Bespoke badges, alloy wheels and a 'powerdome' bulge on the bonnet distinguish the ActiveHybrid from other X6 models and dashboard displays indicate the status of the hybrid system.

Active Hybrid 7
BMW calls the 7 Series-based Active Hybrid 7 a 'light hyrbid'. It uses some of the same technology as the Active Hybrid X6, but there are key changes.

It, too, has a twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine, but with a maximum of 443bhp. It also has just one electric motor, which produces up to 27bhp for a combined total of 459bhp.

The Active Hybrid 7 uses a conventional eight-speed automatic gearbox, whereas the Active Hybrid X6 has a continuously variable transmission. The Active Hybrid 7 also has an engine stop/start system.

BMW Active Hybrid 7 vital statistics
• Acceleration: 0-62mph - 4.9 seconds
• CO2 emissions: 219g/km
• Average fuel consumption: 29.1mpg

As with the Active Hybrid X6, special badges, alloy wheels and instrument displays set the Active Hybrid 7 apart from other 7 Series models. Standard- and long-wheelbase models will be available.

How much will they cost?
There are currently no plans to bring either model to the UK. BMW says there's no business case for converting the models to right-hand drive while the market for such cars is dominated by high-powered diesels.

Verdict
An impressive showcase for what BMW can do – pity they won't be sold in the UK.

BMW video round-up
BMW showcase the Vision concept car, new X1 SUV and the 5 GT
Click here to view the video

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