BMW is surging ahead with overall electrification
Expect electric SUVs, but less carbon for BMW green surge after 2020, writes Michael Taylor
BMW is in the middle of a spending surge and a tech war that will boost its green cars, hinting strongly at a series of electrified SUVs. The company that began its electrified surge with the experimental i3 and the plug-in hybrid i8 has locked down the naming rights for everything from the i1 to the i9 and from the iX1 for SUVs through to the iX9. Group CEO Harald Krueger admitted that the much-hyped iNext (most likely to be called the i5) would be the next electric BMW, with up to 700km of battery range, to be followed by a fully electric X3. "In 2020 we will launch the fully electric X3. In it, X and i come together. BMW is the market leader in electrified cars — it’s not Tesla — and the market has increased by 30% in 2017. Whoever drives an electric car will stick to it. We are at the fifth generation of EVs and we need very little rare earth now in our drive systems, though solid state is clearly after 2020." Krueger promised more to come after its much-hyped, highly autonomous...