German firm claims 4 Series-based EV, due in 2021, will be a true performance saloon
18 November 2019

BMW has confirmed that its forthcoming i4 electric saloon will produce 523bhp, with the Tesla Model 3 rival featuring a top speed of around 125mph. 

The new model, due to go into production in 2021 following the forthcoming iX3, will be the German firm’s first electric saloon. Along with the regular 4 Series, the new EV was previewed by the bold 4 Series Gran Coupe concept at the Frankfurt motor show. BMW claims the i4 “heralds a new era of driving pleasure”, and will feature the firm’s “hallmark brand driving pleasure in a particularly concentrated form.”

BMW has released new official shots of the i4 undergoing winter testing, and has confirmed that it will make use of its fifth-generation eDrive system, which will also be used on the iX3 – due in 2020 – and the advanced iNext, which is set for launch in in 2021.

BMW claims the 523bhp motors will allow for a 0-62mph time of around four seconds. The firm says that output has been chosen to mirror the power of a V8 engine in current BMW models, and claims that it will offer “outstanding performance characteristics and exceptionally high efficiency”.

The latest eDrive system is built around a modular system featuring the electric motor, transmission and power electronics in a single housing, which BMW says means it can be used for a range of different models and power outputs. The i4 will feature an 80kWh high-voltage battery pack that weighs around 550kg and gives a claimed range of around 373 miles. The battery can be charged at rates of up to 150kW. 

As shown in previous prototype shots, a clear visual link between the i4 and the latest 3 Series can be seen. The i4 will share much of its design with the upcoming second-generation 4 Series

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However, a side-on view reveals that the new car appears higher off the ground (both in terms of roof height and ground clearance) than the current 4 Series, likely due to a raised floor to accommodate the sizeable long-range battery.

Earlier this year, BMW revealed that the i4 had been tested at its cold weather facility in Arjeplog, Sweden, with the goal of determining the durability of the models' batteries, electric motors and suspension systems. 

The i4 is scheduled to be built on the same line as standard 3 Series models at BMW's factory in Munich, Germany. To ensure a smooth production process with existing petrol, diesel and hybrid models, the manufacturer is already running assembly tests with pre-production versions.

The expansion of the i sub-brand follows a ruling by the EU to enforce a fleet average CO2 emission reduction of 35% by 2030. The ruling effectively spells an end to the combustion engine as a sole source of propulsion for high-volume cars sold in Europe by the end of the next decade.

This was expected by BMW’s top management, who initiated the acceleration of development of both long-range plug-in hybrids and electric models in a board meeting held earlier this year. Speaking to Autocar at the 2018 Paris motor show, chairman Harald Krüger confirmed the altered i division plan, which aims to enable BMW to offer more electric cars than any rival premium brand in the short term.

It calls for the introduction of up to five dedicated i models by the end of 2021, with tentative steps to expand to 12 electric models within the whole BMW Group, including Mini and Rolls-Royce, by 2025.

Krüger has also given the green light for 25 new plug-in hybrid models to be introduced by 2025 in order to meet the 2030 target.

Among the models at the centre of BMW’s electrification strategy are a further developed version of the continuously evolving i3, the Mini SE, the iX3 and the i4. BMW will follow that with a more advanced range of premium electric cars employing solid-state batteries and autonomous driving features, previewed on the recent iNext concept car.

Talking about the i4, Krüger said: “The leading factors that will set it apart are fantastic design, which is very different to anything else on the road, and the fact that it is lighter and therefore more dynamic than anything we see on the market today, thanks to the materials we will use. Couple that with the connectivity technology we are constantly developing and we are confident it will lead the market.”

BMW's electric revolution begins in the sales charts

BMW’s sales of electrified models have increased rapidly in the past two years. In January 2017, it registered 5232 plug-in vehicles globally, but that figure had more than doubled to 13,271 by December. The company registered on average more than 10,000 electrified models per month in 2018.

These registrations are more significant viewed as a percentage of BMW’s total sales figures. In January 2017, this was an unremarkable 3.2%, but in August 2018, it was 6.7%. Surprisingly, the most popular plug-in BMW Group model in 2017 was the i3 – a car that has been in showrooms since 2013 and failed to meet targets for many of its years on sale.

A total of 31,482 were registered in 2017, nearly double the number in 2014. Despite this, BMW still has a long way to go to achieve its 2020 target of 500,000 electrified vehicles sold annually.

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35

6 March 2018

Looks like BMW are trying to steal the I-Pace and E-Tron thunder by making announcements about cars that don't even exist in a test/pre-production phase. 

Vapour wear!

1 November 2018

My first brand new out of the showroom car was a 2002 Tii (I was living in Hamburg at the time) the ony other BMW I had was the magnificent 3.0 Csi. Since then I honestly havent had my hearstrings pulled, but IF they dont tone down and leave the design as shown - this car would deffinatley go to the top of my list of wants. Which is good because I will have done the full circle as it will be the last new car I will buy being 73 in December means probably 10 years with luck, the good news is I still dont need glasses :-))

18 November 2019

hinder you! I'm just 13 months behind you and re-newing my International Racing Licence for 2020. It's just a number......

1 November 2018

So BMW will take till 2022 to get a Model 3 rival ON THE ROAD.  Yet their 3/4 Series is being slaughtered in the States with Telsa selling 22,000+ a month, so much for German tech.

1 November 2018
xxxx wrote:

So BMW will take till 2022 to get a Model 3 rival ON THE ROAD.  Yet their 3/4 Series is being slaughtered in the States with Telsa selling 22,000+ a month, so much for German tech.

The 3/4 series replacements are imminent, so people are hardly going to bundle out to buy them. Plus people who want an electric car, go to Tesla. BMW complete with everyone else on the non electric side of things. How are Jag doing in your statistics?

When they release an electric car, they may as well do it right. Not point in rushing a car out with loads of production and quality issues like the Model 3 had / has

1 November 2018
robhardyuk wrote:

xxxx wrote:

So BMW will take till 2022 to get a Model 3 rival ON THE ROAD.  Yet their 3/4 Series is being slaughtered in the States with Telsa selling 22,000+ a month, so much for German tech.

The 3/4 series replacements are imminent, so people are hardly going to bundle out to buy them. Plus people who want an electric car, go to Tesla. BMW complete with everyone else on the non electric side of things. How are Jag doing in your statistics?

When they release an electric car, they may as well do it right. Not point in rushing a car out with loads of production and quality issues like the Model 3 had / has

3/4 sales have been dropping since 2015 when the Model 3 spec was released. Jag I-Pace. must be doing something right as there's a long waiting list and the car is actually 'on the road' unlike the Merc and Audi.

BMW have released an EV it's called the i3 and it's probably costing them bucket loads due to expensive build costs and low sales. It's also behind the Bolt and way behind the LEAF on sales.  

9 August 2019
xxxx wrote:

robhardyuk wrote:

xxxx wrote:

So BMW will take till 2022 to get a Model 3 rival ON THE ROAD.  Yet their 3/4 Series is being slaughtered in the States with Telsa selling 22,000+ a month, so much for German tech.

The 3/4 series replacements are imminent, so people are hardly going to bundle out to buy them. Plus people who want an electric car, go to Tesla. BMW complete with everyone else on the non electric side of things. How are Jag doing in your statistics?

When they release an electric car, they may as well do it right. Not point in rushing a car out with loads of production and quality issues like the Model 3 had / has

3/4 sales have been dropping since 2015 when the Model 3 spec was released. Jag I-Pace. must be doing something right as there's a long waiting list and the car is actually 'on the road' unlike the Merc and Audi.

BMW have released an EV it's called the i3 and it's probably costing them bucket loads due to expensive build costs and low sales. It's also behind the Bolt and way behind the LEAF on sales.  

 

i have no idea where you live but where I do Audi E-Trond are thick on the ground. I haven’t seen a Mercedes and the i3 is pretty popular as well. I’d look at the i4 if they built a stationwagon, I have no use for a saloon or hatchback.

18 November 2019
KiwiRob wrote:

xxxx wrote:

robhardyuk wrote:

xxxx wrote:

So BMW will take till 2022 to get a Model 3 rival ON THE ROAD.  Yet their 3/4 Series is being slaughtered in the States with Telsa selling 22,000+ a month, so much for German tech.

The 3/4 series replacements are imminent, so people are hardly going to bundle out to buy them. Plus people who want an electric car, go to Tesla. BMW complete with everyone else on the non electric side of things. How are Jag doing in your statistics?

When they release an electric car, they may as well do it right. Not point in rushing a car out with loads of production and quality issues like the Model 3 had / has

3/4 sales have been dropping since 2015 when the Model 3 spec was released. Jag I-Pace. must be doing something right as there's a long waiting list and the car is actually 'on the road' unlike the Merc and Audi.

BMW have released an EV it's called the i3 and it's probably costing them bucket loads due to expensive build costs and low sales. It's also behind the Bolt and way behind the LEAF on sales.  

 

i have no idea where you live but where I do Audi E-Trond are thick on the ground. I haven’t seen a Mercedes and the i3 is pretty popular as well. I’d look at the i4 if they built a stationwagon, I have no use for a saloon or hatchback.

Not sure if you targetted me but E-Tron?  Anyway that's sold around 9,000 around the whole of Europe by early august, thick on the ground?

18 November 2019
xxxx wrote:

3/4 sales have been dropping since 2015 when...

Saloon / coupe sales have been dropping since SUV became more popular.  Jeez oh man.

i3 is a different kettle of fish altogether from a LEAF.  Try comparing like-4-like before you spurt out meaningless stats. 

18 November 2019
scotty5 wrote:

xxxx wrote:

3/4 sales have been dropping since 2015 when...

Saloon / coupe sales have been dropping since SUV became more popular.  Jeez oh man.

i3 is a different kettle of fish altogether from a LEAF.  Try comparing like-4-like before you spurt out meaningless stats. 

Wrong again scotty. SUV's were around well before the model 3, if you think 3 Series sales haven't been affected in the last 2 years by the Model 3 stateside you have been well and truely 'beamed up' scotty.

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