BMW's biggest, the Seven series, introduced just as the roaring Eighties were getting into full swing, launched the company into the big time. The first 'Seven', which dates from the late Seventies, never quite cut it in the executive car park prestige stakes. In contrast, the replacement model's fine-handling chassis and high-tech engineering put the big BMW firmly into Mercedes and Jaguar territory.
For the first time, the Bavarians had built a big car without compromises. The 'Seven's' handling and ride changed people's minds about big BMWs - no longer were they seen as unpredictable, hard-riding and unreliable. Which was just as well, since the Seven arrived in late 1986, just in time to challenge Jaguar's new XJ40 for the luxury car crown.