The Unveiling of the V16-Powered BMW 7 Series Hidden for 34 Years

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By Car Brand Experts


After years of secrecy, BMW has taken the covers off a long-lost gem—a V16-powered 7 Series, a marvel thought to be lost in the annals of automotive history. The unveiling at the 2024 Techno Classica classic car show in Essen, Germany, brought the spotlight back on this eccentric creation.

The Legacy of Goldfisch

Enthusiasts may recollect the original “Goldfisch” prototype, an E32-generation 7 Series housing a massive V16 engine, which never made it to production due to its impractical design. Despite its setbacks, BMW embarked on a second endeavor, resulting in the 1990 BMW 750iL Goldfisch, a refined and production-ready adaptation.

The Goldfisch Sequel: A Closer Look

The Goldfisch II featured significant revisions—a redesigned front end to accommodate the engine, eliminating the need for rear fender intakes and trunk-mounted radiators. Visual distinctions from a standard 7 Series included altered C-pillars, roofline, headlight setup, and kidney grilles, emphasizing its unique engine configuration.

A Glimpse Inside

Internally, the Goldfisch sequel boasted increased wood trims and opulent dashboard aesthetics. Noteworthy was the shift from manual to automatic transmission, aligning with the era’s automotive trends.

Unveiling Performance

The V16 powerhouse churned out 348 horsepower, propelling the Goldfisch to a top speed of 155 mph. Despite its impressive output, comparisons with contemporary models reveal the intricate balance between power and efficiency achieved by BMW’s engineering team.


The resurrection of the V16-powered BMW 7 Series marks a testament to automotive innovation, showcasing BMW’s dedication to pushing boundaries and redefining excellence in engineering.


1. Why was the original Goldfisch project not greenlit for production?

The original Goldfisch project faced challenges due to its impractical design resulting from housing a V16 engine in a 7 Series not engineered for such power, leading to compromises in functionality.

2. What distinguished the Goldfisch sequel visually from a standard E32-generation 7 Series?

The Goldfisch II featured altered C-pillars, roofline, headlights, kidney grilles, and a redesigned front end, reflecting modifications necessary to accommodate the robust V16 engine.

3. What was the power output of the V16 engine in the 1990 BMW 750iL Goldfisch?

The V16 engine produced 348 horsepower, enabling the Goldfisch to achieve a top speed of 155 mph, showcasing impressive performance for its time.

Article Title: The Untold Story of BMW’s Second-Gen Golfisch: What Could Have Been


The automotive world is filled with what-ifs and missed opportunities, and one such case is the second-gen Golfisch by BMW. Back in 1990, BMW had a daring concept on the table that could have set new standards in the industry.

The Missed Opportunity:

The second-gen Golfisch, equipped with a powerful 16-cylinder engine, could have been a groundbreaking addition to BMW’s lineup. This move would have placed BMW among the prestigious league of 16-cylinder production cars, alongside legendary brands like Bugatti and pre-war Cadillacs.

Financial Realities:

Despite its potential to revolutionize the automotive scene, the V16 7 Series was deemed financially unviable. The exorbitant costs associated with its production would have made it a luxury only a few could afford. However, enthusiasts can’t help but wonder about the impact this marvel could have had on the automotive industry.


While the second-gen Golfisch never came to fruition, it remains a testament to BMW’s innovative spirit and willingness to push boundaries. Though it may have only existed in concept, its legacy lives on as a reminder of the bold ideas that drive progress in the automotive world.


What was the second-gen Golfisch by BMW?

The second-gen Golfisch was a concept by BMW in 1990 that featured a powerful 16-cylinder engine, aiming to establish BMW among the elite league of 16-cylinder production cars.

Why was the second-gen Golfisch never produced?

Despite its groundbreaking potential, the second-gen Golfisch was deemed financially impractical due to the high production costs involved, making it a luxury out of reach for most consumers.

What legacy does the second-gen Golfisch leave behind?

While it never made it to production, the concept of the second-gen Golfisch showcases BMW’s innovation and willingness to explore new horizons in the automotive industry, leaving a lasting impact on enthusiasts and industry professionals alike.

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