BMW is known for its sporty sedans and SUVs that come with cutting edge technology and performance. With changing times, the brand is also changing. But, it still intends to incorporate its stellar design language in a more eco-friendly and modern package — an electric vehicle.
BMW took the wraps off its fully electric i4 concept – the German brand’s crack at a Tesla-rivaling luxury sedan. It’s an all-electric four-door Gran Coupe with an estimated range of 270 miles (434 km) and the ability to produce 530 horsepower, pushing it past its high-performance M3 combustion vehicle.
It was supposed to appear at the Geneva auto show, but the event was cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak. BMW elected to do an online reveal instead. The i4 is an important car for the company as it is the vehicle that the company will rely on as it moves forward into the electric car future.
While electric and hybrid BMWs aren’t the norm, the company isn’t a total newcomer to the market. Its quirky i3 hatchback and i8 sports car have been around for years, but their appeal has aged, making BMW in need of a new flagship. Also, the brand needs to go up against the likes of Tesla, who’re currently leading the electric vehicle revolution.
The BMW i4 is capable of going 0 to 100 kmph in 4 seconds with a top speed of 200 kmph. The real i4 — not the concept version shown in the digital launch, but something similar — is supposed to start production in 2021. The concept has a long wheelbase, fastback roofline, and short overhangs, suggesting that the production version will have a similar profile.
It’s not clear whether the production unit will have similar interiors and infotainment systems. But, it’s safe to assume that it’ll be mostly touchscreen-based with upscale features like a precious knob that’s located in the center console.
BMW says it is investing €200 million to reconfigure its Munich assembly plant to accommodate the manufacturing of electric cars. The i3 was never a runaway success BMW hoped it would be. The company needs i4 to shine in the marketplace amid a blitzkrieg by Tesla.