There was a time when we used to make jokes about the prospect of a fully-electrified M model. As enthusiasts, we would joke about how preposterous such a model would be. Well, it looks like it’s actually happening and it’s happening sooner than we expected. Speaking to the Australian press at the launch of the new M3 and M4 models, the BMW M Boss, Markus Flasch confirmed that the Motorsport division is working on an electric M car already.
“Next year we will launch the first battery-electric M car in the performance segment, based on the i4, as something to confirm,” Flasch revealed to Car Advice. “Then we’re working on hybrid electrified performance and high-performance cars, but it is too early to disclose which ones it is going to be.”
It’s actually quite surprising to hear Flasch, a typically tight-lipped executive, give out such a definitive answer. Especially when it’s such big news.
Nevertheless, the news is welcome and we can’t wait to see what the BMW i4 M could bring. So far we know that the i4 EV will be basically a four-door coupe based on the 4 Series, with similar looks on the outside but drastic differences inside. The interior will be completely different if the concept is anything to go by. The powertrain will also be electric, of course. As for what an M version could bring to the table, your guess is as good as mine.
As Flasch confirmed in his talk with the Australian press, the weight of the batteries will be the biggest hurdle to get over. It will probably mean that the M-developed BMW i4 will be fast in a straight line but not as good as the current M3 and M4 in the bends. The BMW M cars are defined by the way they handle though and that’s something the engineers will have to grapple with. If the i4 M becomes reality, it would not only have to be fast in a drag race but also on a track like the Nurburgring.