2011 has just begun and as expected, new information around the future BMW electric family have come to light. As we mentioned this week, in 2011 BMW will increase their marketing efforts around the Megacity vehicles and we predicted a concept to be shown in the near future.
According to the usual BMW insider, Scott27, the Munich-based automaker may reveal the Megacity in a concept form for the first time either at Detroit Auto Show or in March at Geneva Show.
Along with new details around the “i” brand, same insider talks about future sporty electric vehicles joining the Vision Concept.
Let’s have a look.
If MINI is pop culture, Rolls-Royce is classic and timeless, and BMW is modern architecture, the BMW “i” is sci-fi future.
When BMW announced the Project-i Thinktank many factions were intrigued. BMW has since made a name for itself in regards to meeting strict CO2 targets and reducing fuel consumption in their products since early 2007. The BMW Group is the world’s No.1 premium automobile manufacturer, as well as the leader in emission reductions .
BMW announced that Project-i will spawn a range of concepts that will range from two to four wheels, and will be anything but conventional. Of course when the Vision Efficient Dynamics debuted at the IAA in 2009 , jaws dropped and finally people could see how innovative and serious BMW is in relation to sustainable future mobility.
But some thought the concept was too adventurous for production until BMW pulled the carpet from under them and announced you will be able to buy this car.
Although the Vision EfficientDynamics is in design format anything but conventional, it lays the groundwork to what you can expect from Project-i . BMW is about to bring the future today as what you see in terms of design the Vision Efficient Dynamics is the signature language of Project-i . Ground breaking drivetrains clothed in high-tech design and functional areodynamics. That is the genesis of the BMW i sub-brand.
Although first on the road will be the highly anticipated and soon-to-be-seen MegaCity Vehicle, a stunning mobility concept for four – purely electric with a cutting edge interior and bodyshell made entirely out of carbon fibre. Interior space is not compromised by the drivetrain and the interior is very spacious that wraps around glass for excellent visibility. Entry is accessible to the rear cabin via MINI/RR esque rear hinged doors.
The exterior is very much akin to the innovative Vision Efficient Dynamics in terms of design ideas , aerodynamics and appearance.
The Vision Efficient Dynamics production car will be very much what you see and you will be surprised at how the car will arrive for production with minimal changes. Using the term i8, the production car of the concept is not a competitor for premium sports cars such as the Audi R8 and Porsche 911, it is more of a sports car concept for the future. A completely stand alone concept.
Although there have been cries of needing a V8 , V10, to do so it defeats the ideals of the concept and turns it into another premium sports car.
Although the Audi R8 has its attributes, at the end of the day, it is an interpretaion of a sports car concept by the respective manufacturer. BMW wants to use their interpretation as something entirely alien, something that has never been done before something that really stands out and not as a competitor but a pioneer.
Another question is to why does the sports car have four seats instead of just two? The answer to why four seats is in principle because people would simply pay you to get driven in the car and BMW drivers like sharing their experience with others, so they would not want friends and family to miss out .
Of course the production car will feature four seats, but further down the road, the Project-i strategy revolves around plans for an i4 a two seater small sports car in the same idea as the i8 which could be based on the Megacity Vehicle and be purely electric. Mercedes-Benz have also instigated a partnership with Ducatti the Superbike manufacturer.
BMW have and continue to test its engines from Motorrad in car chassis . Motorcycle engines are compact, very light and when connected to powerful electric motors, extremely rapid including the new inline six. Should the MegaCity vehicle be well received, then BMW might consider equipping the car with a motorcycle engine as a range extender.
Although Project-i is also developing two cylinder engines.
In summary. BMWi is not going to be specially adapted additional series concepts, but an entire series of models that will aim to offer their own identity and technology.
So far you have only seen the Vision Efficient Dynamics and a sneak preview of the MegaCity Vehicle, but it is your first look into a new era for BMW.
The new “Clothes” on the Vision Efficient Dynamics” are to bring it in line with a forthcoming BMW Project-i Concept car.”[Source: Germancarforum via Scott]