We’ve been critical of BMW as of late when it comes to electrification. Especially when we compare BMW to some of its rival brands that are developing more impressive electric cars. However, it’s not as if BMW is sitting on its hands when it comes to electric cars. In fact, BMW is working very hard on developing new EV tech. One of the more important things the Bavarians are working on is a new platform that will underpin all of its next models, EV or otherwise.
During the presentation for the heavily criticized Vision iNEXT concept at the LA Auto Show, the brand’s vice president of electric powertrains, Stefan Juraschek, revealed the new platform.
At the moment, BMW is working on a new platform that will be used for all of its upcoming electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid vehicles and traditional internal combustion engine vehicles. It’s a platform that’s modular and scalable, allowing the brand to use it for any sort of car.
It’s also designed to work well with the the brand’s new electric powertrains. With BMW developing its own motor/gearbox powertrain units for upcoming electric cars, this new platform is being designed with them in mind. And depending on the sort of car, the new powertrains fit into different places.
For instance, if it’s going to be a pure EV, that powertrain is easily fitted to the rear axle, to make the car rear-wheel drive. However, if it’s a plug-in hybrid, it can easily be placed up front, in combination with the traditional engine. And if it’s just a normal ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) car, the EV powertrain is obviously omitted entirely.
This new platform is also being designed to accommodate a battery pack large enough to give its EVs up to 435 miles of range and it’s going to be ready for Level 4 and Level 5 autonomous technology, whenever those eventually debut.
The idea for having such a modular, flexible platform is that BMW sort of future-proofs itself. So if EVs suddenly take off and become mainstream, the Bavarians can easily start pumping out more EVs. If plug-in hybrids become the new norm, the platform is ready. And if traditional engines stick around for longer than we expect, it’s still capable of that.
[Source: Car Scoops]