If there was any doubt that 2022 would be a much better year than 2021, BMW just confirmed it with the launch of two stunning new all-electric models which are scheduled to hit Canadian roads early next year. The BMW iX is a stylish SUV with a next-gen zero-emission powertrain good for 516 horsepower and loaded with high-tech gadgetry. The i4, meanwhile, is BMW’s first-ever purely electric Gran Coupé, combining spirited motoring with a four-door fastback silhouette. Let’s dive into the details.
Extended range come standard
With 475 kilometres of all-electric driving range, both the iX xDrive50 and i4 eDrive40 are ready to ease any lingering range anxiety. Plus, since both are equipped for DC fast charging at up to 200 kW, recharging on the fly should be painless. With the iX, for example, fast charging for 10 minutes grants up to 150 km of range and filling the battery from 10-80 per cent will take just 31 minutes.
A new, smarter iDrive
BMW iDrive 8 is the latest iteration of the company’s infotainment interface, and it’s by far the most advanced yet. Using a new generation of displays (including the stunning BMW Curved Display that wraps around the driver) and increased connectivity, the system is designed with a focus on dialogue-based interaction using natural language. Translation? This is a voice-operated interface that should work incredibly well.
Spirited driving dynamics
Buckle up: with its electric all-wheel-drive platform, the new BMW iX xDrive50 makes the sprint from 0-100 km/h in just 4.6 seconds. This kind of performance – as well as the kind of handling you’d expect from a BMW – is enabled by an intelligent mix of materials like carbon fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) in the chassis design that increases rigidity and minimizes weight.
There’s an M for that
As impressive as the iX xDrive50 and i4 eDrive40 are, the engineers at BMW M GmbH couldn’t be satisfied without making a few significant tweaks. The glorious result of their hot-rodding is the iX M60, an electric SUV boasting over 600 hp, and the i4 M50, the first fully electric performance model to wear the M badge, with 536 hp. The i4 M50, which will also be available in Canada in early 2022, features an electric all-wheel-drive system and a Sport Boost function that increases the system’s combined drive power and torque at the push of a button. With no engine noise, an M-specific BMW IconicSounds Electric soundtrack provides the entertainment instead.
A sustainable future
In addition to advancing its emissions-free electric vehicle (EV) technology, BMW is also dedicated to ensuring the highest standards of sustainability and human rights across its supply chains, from the rare earth minerals used in its batteries to the water recycling program at its assembly plants. For example, the high-voltage NMC-811 batteries in the BMW i4 contain less than 10 percent cobalt content, which is procured directly by the BMW Group and lithium mined from hard rock deposits in Australia.