BMW i4

BMW is re­boot­ing its all-elec­tric i brand with a new saloon to ri­val Tesla’s up­com­ing Model 3 On sale 2021 Price from £55,000 (est)

What Car? - - Contents - Dar­ren Moss Dar­[email protected]­mar­

Elec­tric saloon will ri­val the Tesla Model 3

BACK IN 2013, BMW be­gan a bold ex­per­i­ment. Called BMW i, it was in­tended to act as a tech-heavy sub-brand to show­case the best that elec­tric car tech­nol­ogy could of­fer.think Mercedes-amg or Ford Per­for­mance with more elec­tric­ity. But fol­low­ing the ini­tial launch of the i3 hatch­back and the i8 sports car, there hasn’t been an all-new i model to shout about.that’s about to change, how­ever, with the launch of the i4.

The all-elec­tric, coupé-styled saloon will count Tesla’s Model 3 among its key ri­vals and will sit on un­der­pin­nings de­rived from to­day’s 4 Se­ries Coupé. Its styling will be heav­ily in uenced by the BMW i Vi­sion Dy­nam­ics con­cept car re­vealed at last year’s Frank­furt mo­tor show.

That car had a claimed range of 372 miles – use­fully more than most of to­day’s elec­tric cars.the im­prove­ment was at­trib­uted to ad­vances in bat­tery tech­nol­ogy that al­lowed en­ergy to be stored more densely and ef ciently than is cur­rently pos­si­ble.

For the pro­duc­tion i4, BMW is hop­ing to in­crease the range to 435 miles – giv­ing it the long­est range of any elec­tric car. Of cials have also promised to “rede ne what is pos­si­ble” in terms of 0-62mph sprint times.the Vi­sion Dy­nam­ics promised a 0-62mph time of less than four sec­onds; the Tesla Model S P100D can do the same in just 2.7sec.

Two con gu­ra­tions of elec­tric mo­tor are be­ing con­sid­ered for the i4.the rst fea­tures a sin­gle elec­tric mo­tor send­ing power to the car’s rear wheels, while the sec­ond op­tion is to use two elec­tric mo­tors – one on each axle – to give the i4 four-wheel drive.the lat­ter would al­low driv­ers to choose be­tween two and four-wheel drive, depend­ing on which driv­ing mode they select. Re­gard­less of which op­tion is cho­sen, the i4 will come with a power out­put of around 350bhp.

BMW is also hop­ing to make the i4 signi cantly lighter than its com­pe­ti­tion, so that it feels more agile on the road.

The car will come with ad­vanced driver as­sis­tance sys­tems and should at the very least be able to con­trol its own speed and steer­ing on the mo­tor­way – al­though hu­man in­put will still be re­quired. It will have a tra­di­tional steer­ing wheel, be­cause bosses have made it clear that even when its cars can drive them­selves, BMWS will still of­fer man­ual con­trols to some de­gree.

Last year’s con­cept promised a range of up to 372 miles

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