Despite the current global health crisis, the launch of the expected BMW i4 (scheduled for 2021) remains on schedule. According to Markus Baumann, BMW’s Head of Testing and Digital Commissioning, “The project has the green light,” and it will be launched on schedule.
The BMW i4 will be a D-segment electric saloon derived from the new 4 Series Gran Coupe, which in turn will be a fastback version of the current 3 Series (G20 generation). Regarding the thermal model, the i4 will be differentiated by a double-fairing kidney grille, specific bumpers, aerodynamically designed wheels, and the presence of retractable handles on its doors. Inside, the changes will be less significant and will mainly affect the infotainment system.
The vehicle will be based on BMW’s CLAR modular platform, set up to host 100% electric, hybrid, and thermal powertrains in rear-wheel drive and all-wheel-drive configurations. In its most capable version, the vehicle will achieve a range of 600 km WLTP thanks to the use of very thin 80 kWh batteries, which will also allow the center of gravity to be lowered without jeopardizing habitability.
On a mechanical level, it should be noted the presence of the eDrive propulsion system, which integrates the electric motor, power electronics, and the load unit. The most performance version (xDrive50e) will have all-wheel drive thanks to the use of two electric motors and a power of 530 hp (surpassing the M4, the sportiest version of the thermal 4 Series), with 0 to 100 km/h in just 4 seconds and a top speed of 200 km/h. A cheaper and less powerful rear-wheel-drive (sDrive40e) version will also be available.
The Munich plant where the vehicle will be manufactured will adapt its production lines between July and September, while the first deliveries will take place in 2021. Within the “i” range of BMW electric cars, the i4 will occupy an intermediate position between the iX3 (also in the D segment, but with a less capable battery and a less powerful powertrain) and the iNEXT (located in the E segment and with a more technological approach).