BMW hosted the world premiere of the Vision Neue Klasse in early September at the IAA Mobility Show in Munich. Since the luxury brand decided to skip the Los Angeles Auto Show hosted last month, it’s only now the electric sedan concept is celebrating its North American debut. A dedicated event is taking place this week at Levi’s Stadium to mark 25 years since the BMW Group Technology Office set up shop in Silicon Valley.
Scheduled for December 7, it’s an invitation-only event where the Vision Neue Klasse takes center stage but there are also workshops and other activities. BMW Group Member of the Board of Management, Development, Frank Weber, is attending the event. The company is setting up mixed reality, multi-sensory driving experiences and technology demonstrations.
As previously announced, the BMW Group is investing $1.7 billion in North America to get ready for the new wave of Neue Klasse-based EVs. $1 billion is being spent at the Spartanburg factory in South Carolina where at least six fully electric SUVs will go into production by the end of the decade. The other $700 million will go toward building a battery assembly plant in Woodruff.
The new EVs are going to be put together inside the assembly hall where BMW currently makes the X3 and X4. The facility in Spartanburg will be upgraded and its footprint is going to increase as well, to boost annual production from 180,000 vehicles to approximately 290,000 units.
Aside from Spartanburg, BMW intends to make Neue Klasse EVs in Debrecen (Hungary), Munich (Germany), San Luis Potosi (Mexico), and Shenyang (China). These new products will benefit from Gen6 batteries with round cells to increase charging speed and range by 30%. In addition, energy density is promised to jump by over 20%.
As for which models are planned in the initial stage of the Neue Klasse’s rollout, BMW has only confirmed a sedan and an SUV in the 3 Series segment. We’ve heard the i3 and iX3 will be followed by an i3 Touring and possibly an iX4 as well.