Auto Express UK just unveiled a rendering of the future BMW i5. Using design cues from the BMW i8, combined with the proportions and cues of a crossover, the magazine delivered a highly unlikely design of the rumored BMW i5. Auto Express says that while “a Tesla Model S-rivalling saloon or an extended version of the i3 have been rumored, it’s understood from within Munich that an SUV is likely to be favoured by BMW’s hierarchy, and our exclusive images show how the i5 might look.”
But for everyone’s sake, we hope that’s not the case.
In a recent interview, BMW CEO Harald Krüger confirmed the development of a new BMW i electric car. The model is likely to be called BMW i5 and the assumption is that it will be a crossover sedan with some design elements from the i3 and i5. A large battery pack in the underfloor ensures that the BMW i5 will sit somewhat higher than the i3, but not at the level of an SUV. “The new BMW i model will be larger than the BMW i3, that’s all I will say for now,” Krueger said. “We want to expand our e-mobility offering to accelerate the transition towards electric vehicles. Today, many buyers still decide against buying an electric car; demand is still low overall.”
Our sources say the i5 production model will be just as spectacular in design as its i3 and i8 brothers, sans the butterfly doors. It will have an attractive appearance, but not sacrifice the comfort of their passengers.
BMW is rumored to take the hydrogen fuel cell systems route, similar to the technology previewed last summer in Miramas. Using hydrogen fuel cells to power electric motors gives BMWs the kind of power and performance their customers are used to with incredible efficiency and no charge times. While pure battery-powered electric vehicles are primarily used for city driving and short distances, the fuel cell technology provides the ideal solution for customers looking for a high driving range with zero emissions. The technology is also aimed at cars larger in size, like those 5 Series and above models. The BMW i5 would fit the bill as well.
BMW is under pressure as rivals roll out new vehicles in attempt to beat the carmaker in annual sales. Tesla is also preparing two new exciting electric cars: an SUV, Model X, and a 3 Series competitor, Model 3 in 2017.