Rumour has it that a big automotive player is about to show off a huge new model at the 2014 Beijing auto show: get set for the BMW 9 Series concept.

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German magazine Auto Motor Und Sport claims the Bavarian brand will reveal the new model as a design study at the Chinese show later this month, and that the car will be built upon the next-generation 7 Series underpinnings.

That new modular architecture is said to be much lighter than in the current 7 Series, and is also set to form the basis of a range models, including the next-generation Rolls-Royce Phantom.

The form of the rumoured new 9 Series is currently unknown. However, given the brand usually reserves odd-numbered models to fill standard roles in its line-up, while even-numbered variants are designed as more design-driven niche fillers, a 9 Series should logically follow in the same vain as the 5 Series and 7 Series. BMW did buck that trend considerably with the practical, family-focused 2 Series Active Tourer, though – given its intent, that car would likely have better suited a 1 Series badge.

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In 2013, BMW showcased the Pininfarina GranLusso concept (pictured), a swooping two-door luxury model that was then rumoured to point to a possible 8 Series coupe – a production version of which would give BMW a rival to the recently revealed Mercedes-Benz S Class Coupe.

The 9 Series news comes just a week after BMW announced it plans to expand its SUV range to include a new X7 variant by 2016, and a fortnight after reports surfaced of a new X2 SUV.