BMW is entering the final phase of validation testing for its new wave of electric vehicles.
The iX3 SUV, iNext concept and i4 four-door
coupe are currently undergoing severe weather testing in Sweden’s arctic
region. BMW’s engineers are cognisant of the issues which befell electric
vehicle owners in the United States during the snowstorms and freezing conditions
earlier this year, when battery capacity in some electric cars shrunk by nearly
To ensure that its new electric vehicle
offerings don’t suffer a similar fate, BMW is investing time and resources to
identifying any thermal issues with its latest battery packs. These new BMW
electric vehicles are due to be delivered to market soon, with iX3 slated for
production next year and i4 set for customer deliveries in 2021.
It is the i4 which is especially interesting
to BMW traditionalists who are pondering the transition to battery, instead of
internal-combustion, power. Although all the i4 test prototypes are still
shrouded in BMW’s disruptive pattern camouflage, the vehicle’s grand coupe
silhouette is clearly evident. The brand’s current electric vehicle offerings
are quite niched: it is either the i3 city car or two-seater i8 supercar
With i4, BMW will aim to offer something
with a spacious cabin for four and all the vaunted driving dynamics which have always
been associated with the brand. Performance claims for the i4, both in terms of
acceleration and range, are deeply impressive.
Although BMW is still being coy about the
battery pack’s exact composition and energy rating, it has committed to i4
being capable of running the benchmark 0-100kph sprint in 4 seconds, whilst
also retaining adequate battery capacity for a cruising range of 600km.
That means that an i4 will be equivalent in
accelerative performance to many of BMW’s renowned M-division performance cars,
whilst having equal range to an average BMW petrol-powered passenger car.