The BMW i sub-brand was a bold move from the German manufacturer who decided to be proactive and take steps towards electrification before it was forced to. Even though investments were high – rumored at around $3B – today, the benefits of the i sub-brand are starting to show across the entire lineup. Now, BMW is preparing for the next phase of its electric revolution.
According to Car and Driver, BMW wants to turn the i sub-brand into an electric-only ordeal, which means the plug-in hybrid i8 will either be branded differently or will become an EV. This goes hand in hand with our previous report that the futuristic model will get three electric motors on its next iteration, good for up to 750 HP, turning it into a proper hypercar.
The i3 will also be upgraded to new levels of performance, with an estimated power output of around 200 horses once the new version comes out. However, the controversial design might be left behind as the i3 matures, and may not use the same amount of aluminum and CFRP as the current i3, making the premium EV a bit more profitable.
To top everything off, a new model is planned. The BMW iNext model will not only feature an all-electric powertrain but will also be showcasing the company’s most advanced autonomous systems, being as close to a completely autonomous vehicle as possible in 2021 or 2022. The iNext will have its own design, making it stand out from its brothers while the power needed to move might be sourced from a fuel-cell system that is currently being developed in collaboration with Toyota.
And while all of these news make old-school purists cringe, the positive side is that BMW is promising that all these new cars will be fun to drive at the same time. Considering how good the i8 turned out to be, we’re more than excited to see what the Germans have in store for us.