BMW's upcoming i4 electric sedan will rival the Tesla Model 3

Humza

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

BMW's past electric models wearing the 'I' moniker include the futuristic-looking, but niche, i3 hatchback and the i8 sports car. Even though both are plug-in hybrids, over the years, the company has been refining its EV technology underpinning those models to power its first fully electric midsize sedan: The BMW i4.

Set to arrive in late 2021, winter testing shots of the i4 prototype were shared by BMW along with other key specs. These include a 390kW motor capable of producing 523 hp and an 80kWh battery pack that'll take it up to 373 miles (600 km) on a single charge, according to the more optimistic WLTP cycle.

BMW's fifth-generation eDrive technology features a new electric motor, power electronics, charging unit and a more compact high-voltage battery pack than previous generations, thanks to a flat cell design.

The modular platform will also be used for BMW's future hybrid models and will debut first on the iX3 next year, followed by the iNext SUV and the i4. "By 2023, the BMW Group will have 25 models with electrified drive in its program." the company said in a press release.

In terms of final design, the i4 is said to be based on BMW's I Vision Dynamics concept (2017) and the Concept 4 Series Coupé (2019). The latter also ruffled some feathers with its odd grille design when it previewed earlier this year at the Frankfurt motor show.

Although the camouflaged prototype doesn't reveal much (duh), the car still appears less extreme than these concepts, as is usually the case, and more in-line with the company's current sedan offerings.

"This heralds a new era of driving pleasure," said BMW, referring to the firm's first purely electric model for the premium mid-range segment that will combine "driving dynamics, sporty and elegant design, premium quality and the spacious comfort and functionality of a four-door Gran Coupé with locally emissions-free mobility."

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Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
BMW with a little better mileage will probably sell well in the US market against Tesla especially with them being a more "stable" brand with a much larger network to support them, but still on the high side for the "average" american buyer.
 

RobJoy

TS Rookie
Doubt it can really "compete".
Not with the prices BMW usually asks of its customers at least.
They may well offer same performance, but not compete.
Not really.
 
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DaveBG

TS Maniac
Yes yes it will rival it as well as all other compliance EVs made so far... sure. No one is till making real efforts and this will cost them a lot. The Nokias of the auto-world will be many.
 

Markoni35

TS Maniac
It looks really cool...... the price will probably be chilling as well. But let's face it - without a proper energy source electric cars will stay an exotic niche for tech fans, but never mainstream.

Remember when in Terminator 3 (or maybe 2) Arnie Terminator enters a store and asks for a replacement battery:
- Hello Sir, what kind of a battery you need?
- The model is not that important. Any nuclear would do.