When BMW first debuted its so-called Power BEV a few days ago in Munich, it made quite the stir. It looks like a G30 5 Series, because it is one, but with some camouflage on the front and rear. While it’s a 5 Series on the outside, it’s entirely different underneath the skin. Rather than a traditional 5 Series powertrain, this Power BEV, internally known as “Lucy”, actually uses an all-electric powertrain and has performance that would squash an M5.
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Powering Lucy is an electric powertrain that consists of three of BMW’s new fifth-generation electric drive units. Each drive unit consists of an electric motor, its gearbox and all of the requisite electronics. Two of them power Lucy’s rear axle and one powers the front axle. Sandwiched between all of that is a 45 kWh battery pack. Total power output? An astonishing 710 hp and an Earth-turning 885 lb-ft of torque. According to BMW, it can get from 0-60 mph in 2.8 seconds.
You might think that 2.8 seconds to 60 mph isn’t super impressive, considering the BMW M5 can do that with just 600 hp. Until you realize that Lucy is a modified 5 Series project that weighs 5,300 lbs (!). That’s about as heavy as a Chevy Tahoe and it can nail 60 mph in under three seconds. More impressive than that, it can slalom like an M5 can as well, thanks to its impressive real-time electric torque vectoring. So despite weighing as much as a moon, Lucy is a surprisingly deft athlete. No wonder Tracy almost lost his lunch.
In the video, it doesn’t seem shockingly fast, simply because iPhone videos do not convey sense of speed well. However, you can hear in his voice and the see in the jerking of the camera that they’re moving rapidly. That level of torque is enough to tow a cruise ship and it’s powering a midsize sedan.
What’s interesting is that BMW created Lucy without changing the interior of the 5 Series at all. So it still remained a comfortable and luxurious sedan, without any humps in the floor or other modifications. It took some tricky engineering, and a loss of trunk space, to make that happen but it proves that BMW can do it even on a regular 5 Series. Though, it did get G12 LCI 7 Series suspension front and rear to accommodate the electric motors and batteries.
It’s an interesting read and it proves what BMW can do with electrification. So while a lot of enthusiasts bemoan BMW’s seeming apprehension to make proper performance EVs, akin to Tesla’s Model S P100D, the brand is fully capable of doing so. Lucy is just a way for BMW to flex its muscles. Apparently, hers are pretty strong.