With the i Vision Dee concept unveiled at CES 2023 in Las Vegas, BMW is signaling a major transformation for the 3 Series. A fully electric model based on the Neue Klasse platform with a substantially different design will be launched in 2025 to pave the way for a new wave of sedans. Even though the Munich automaker is manufacturing more than 10 SUVs (if we count the long-wheelbase X models sold in China), it remains dedicated to the good ol’ three-box saloon.
BMW design boss Domagoj Dukec told The Drive the once-traditional body style can have a future in the electric era since its existence doesn’t depend on having a gasoline or diesel engine under the hood. The Bavarians are already selling an i3 Sedan in China and the globally available i7. The i5 will join them later this year. The i4 Gran Coupe is technically a liftback/hatchback but with a sedan-esque shape.
“The sedan shape is not linked to a combustion engine. It’s just because it’s the most efficient shape around passengers. We link the past, BMW has always done a three-box sedan. We want to show our customers if the world is changing, we’ll adapt. But certain things will always stay familiar. We [don’t] have to do it, but we love it.”
During the same interview, the design top brass also spoke about BMW’s priorities during the development of next-generation cars. He said the German luxury brand will focus more on quality and a design so pure that it will still be relevant a decade later. Domagoj Dukec went on to say future models will have such a pure design that a Life Cycle Impulse won’t be necessary to freshen up the appearance, adding that a “facelift is very superficial.”
The ”ultimate driving machine” ethos will still be embedded as the Head of Design said that “BMW without performance doesn’t exist. We are not here to be second. The performance will always be there”. As a refresher, the engineers are already working on a quad-motor i4 prototype and rumor has it the M3 will be the first full-fat M electric model.
In September 2022, Frank Weber, Head of Engineering and R&D at BMW, told us the company already has the technology for a high-performance EV with one megawatt of power. That works out to a whopping 1,341 hp.
Source: The Drive