The world was given a preview of what BMW’s next model in its electrified i lineup might look like at last September’s Frankfurt Motor Show with the i Vision Dynamics concept. The i Vision Dynamics concept is a preview of the i5, which will be a four-door gran coupe that should sit in the range above the i3 but below the i8.
It’s going to be just one of 12 all-electric cars BMW is planning to release by 2025, and this week the German luxury automaker outlined that a new electric and autonomous SUV concept will be unveiled this year, the iNEXT, while also noting that an S version of the new i8 seen at the Detroit motor show was under consideration.
This new fully electric iNEXT model is set to launch in 2021: it will debut BMW’s new vehicle architecture, and it will take the form of an SUV of a similar size to the current X5 when it’s finally launched shortly after the i5.
Kotouc told Auto Express, “I can promise you that this year you will see something and touch something – you need to let people experience what is coming. It’s groundbreaking; the iNEXT will be more of the shape and size of an X5. It will have a completely different interior and be able to seat five people.”
In the meantime, it appears possible a new, more powerful ‘S’ version of the i8 could be in the pipeline ahead of the i5 and the iNEXT.
Ever since the launch of the i8 there’s been a groundswell of opinion that says it should have been a more powerful model to suit the way it looks, and Kotouc admitted, “Yes, there is customer demand for a more powerful version but it needs to make sense for our brand.” He then added. “You could put a V12 in there and it would be incredibly powerful but would it still be a BMW i car? We need to find the perfect balance.”
The recently updated i8 coupe features a hybrid powertrain made up of a 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine and an 11.6 kWh electric motor. The total power is claimed to be 275kW, which should get the i8 from 0-62mph in 4.4-seconds. A more powerful i8s version, along the lines of the recently launched i3s performance flagship for the i3 range, could send the stunning coupe into truly serious supercar territory. – AFP Relaxnews