New armored BMW i7 and 7 Series vehicles are rated for VR9-level protection
When BMW customers want their vehicles armored up, they need not look far. Aptly-named BMW Protection Vehicles, these may look like any BMW on the road but these cars are specifically designed to protect individuals from ballistics as well as from explosives.
Today, BMW has just revealed its latest Protection Vehicles – say hello to the i7 and 7 Series Protection, and they are fully decked out to protect the passengers from high-level threats. With a safety rating of VR-9 which is one of the highest levels of protection from ballistics and explosives, how was BMW able to do it?
Unlike most armored vehicles which are retrofitted, the i7 and 7 Series Protection are actually constructed on the production line. Called BMW Protection Core, it sees the entire supporting structure of the sedan body built from armored steel.
It has three-dimensionally engineered elements all made of exceptionally resistant, hot-formed steel alloys. This gives the BMW Protection Core a self-supporting protective cell that is combined with protection-spec doors, armoring for the underbody, as well as safety glass. Speaking of safety glass, BMW claims that the glass used for the two models can protect against fire from 7.62x54 R ammunition – one of the strongest calibers available in the market today that's more powerful than the 7.62x51mm NATO round.
As mentioned earlier, the vehicle can also resist explosives. Both the roof and underbody offer maximum protection against explosives from grenades and other types of ordinance. And should the fuel tank be damaged or ruptured by a bullet, it has self-sealing technology in order for the 7 Series 760i Protection to keep on going.
With all the added weight of ballistic protection and armoring, BMW also beefed up the suspension of both sedans to handle the extra heft. In case of a chemical attack, both the i7 and 7 Series Protection have their own oxygen supply. For extra peace of mind should any attacker go for the tires, both vehicles come with run-flat PAX tires which allow the car to speed up to 80 km/h even in the event of total loss of pressure.
The 7 Series Protection gets its power from a 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 that generates 530 PS and 750 Nm of torque. It also has an xDrive intelligent AWD system that can automatically adjust how much power is sent to each wheel. Despite weighing more than your regular luxury sedan, this armored 7 Series can still go from 0 – 100 km/h in 6.6 seconds and reach a top speed of 210 km/h.
As for the i7 Protection, it has a pair of electric motors that deliver a total system output of 544 PS and 745 Nm of torque which is almost equal to that of the 760i. It too benefits from all-wheel drive capability but is slower to hit 100 km/h from a standstill at 9 seconds flat. It also has a lower top speed of just 160 km/h.
Deliveries for the armored i7 and 7 Series Protection will begin in December 2023.