The next addition to the BMW i family will be a new model which is likely to be sold under the i5 badge. Rumors around a third i model have been going around for years now, with several contradictory reports that mention the next i car being either a fully electric sedan, a crossover or even a hydrogen-powered car.
But according to our sources, the next BMW in the i series will be indeed called the i5, but instead of having a design built upon the i3 and/or i8, it will look closer to “regular” BMW models.
Furthermore, the car is said to be much farther along in development than many believe, but unfortunately we don’t have a definitive launch date.
Last month, speaking exclusively to Auto Express, BMW’s member of the board responsible for sales and marketing, Ian Robertson, said: “Having recently had the final design review, you can assume that it’s a bigger car rather than a smaller one, and you can assume that the packaging for the next generation of batteries has to be accommodated in such a way that gives the car a certain proportion.”
BMW is also expected to include a Level 3 autonomous technology in the i5, a significant step forward from what’s currently being previewed in the 5 and 7 Series. Eventually the i5 is said to be capable of level four and five autonomous driving, where occupants have hardly any input.
Whether the i5 will arrive together with the iNext in 2021 remains to be seen, but for now one thing is clear – BMW is looking to throw a Tesla competitor in the mix.