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Without question, BMW has made some controversial design decisions in the past five years. One of the latest updates is the BMW 7 Series, but so far, buyers don’t seem to mind. Despite polarizing looks, the 7 Series is off to a hot start in 2023, nearly doubling sales over 2022 thus far.

A black BMW 7 Series sedan driving
2023 BMW 7 Series | BMW

Numbers show impressive growth in premium luxury sales

BMW Group released its sales numbers for the first quarter of 2023. In looking through the data, some surprises jumped out.

Firstly, the BMW 2 Series is losing favor, posting a 65% drop in sales when compared to the same period last year. Even the 3 Series is off by over 17%, indicating that smaller luxury cars are struggling to keep up.

Meanwhile, the BMW 4 Series posted a massive gain, up nearly 63% year over year, while the 5 Series saw sales increase by a third.

However, the most notable sales jump is the new BMW 7 Series. With a 92.6% leap over the first quarter 2022, the 2,885 sold units nearly doubles last year’s figure.

Why is the BMW 7 Series suddenly so successful?

The interior of a 2023 BMW 7 Series sedan
BMW 7 Series interior | BMW

It’s strange to think of a top-level executive luxury sedan posting such a large sales increase. But a recent report by The Washington Post might lend some insight.

In it, issues regarding both high interest rates and higher vehicle prices show that buying new cars is more difficult than in years past. As such, only people considered upper middle class and above can afford to buy something new. And given the state of the car market and economy, even those buyers are holding out.

In turn, the richest buyers are the ones pushing new car sales so far in 2023. And when a shiny new toy like the BMW 7 Series comes along, those with deep pockets will buy in just to check it out.

That can also explain the dip among BMW’s less-expensive models. When a 2 Series Gran Coupe is nearly $40,000, a similarly-equipped Hyundai Elantra for $12,000 less feels like a smarter option.

Excellence of the BMW 7 Series can’t be denied

Of course, there are plenty of high-level luxury cars with six-figure price tags. But the 2023 BMW 7 Series offers a cabin experience that trumps the competition.

Starting with the optional 32-inch rear-seat display, a first for BMW and unrivaled at this price point. Front and rear massaging seats with a rear-seat footrest add to the luxury experience. Overall, the BMW 7 Series approaches Rolls Royce levels of luxury for one-third the cost. The S-Class has yet to catch up, while the Genesis G90 is almost there. But as always, Genesis has an image problem that will take a few more years to overcome.

BMW needs the 7 Series to succeed

BMW has had an identity crisis over the past few years. Still working to deliver quality driver’s cars while catering to a luxury-focused public and new push to EVs. As such, the BMW 7 Series delivers on all fronts, providing a surprisingly competent handling platform for its size, according to Car and Driver.

The electric i7 is another feather in BMW’s cap right now, while the gas-powered version has earned a lot of attention. That’s good for BMW, and may signal a return to form for the German brand.

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