BMW is apparently changing its tune about developing plug-in vehicles in every product category. A month ago that was the story, and that the BMW X5 eDrive, a plug-in hybrid SUV, would be BMW’s next plug-in vehicle. Now, BMW’s i3 project manager, Roland Kowalski, says that SUV’s don’t fit the BMW ‘i’ brand.
Their plan is to eventually introduce vehicles in the ‘i’ brand for every digit (i1, i2, i3, and so on). According to Kowalski, the BMW i brand is purely about vehicles for urban megacities. Therefore, SUV’s don’t fit the i brand because urban dwellers don’t need a four-wheel-drive SUV. Instead, urban dwelling SUV owners are looking for roominess in their vehicle. According to Kowalski, the BMW i3 offers lots of roominess despite its compact exterior dimensions.
The claim about the BMW X5 came from BMW’s head of production line for large vehicles, Peter Wolf, who said their intention is to have a plug-in vehicle in every BMW product category. He’s been quoted saying BMW is “planning to have a plug-in hybrid [vehicle] in each and every model series.”
Perhaps the BMW plug-in hybrid SUV is now dead? Or is it simply that the BMW X5 eDrive plug-in hybrid SUV won’t be labeled with a BMW i brand name? And therefore both of them are correct? That the i brand won’t include SUV’s does not mean BMW is not planning a plug-in hybrid SUV if that SUV won’t be labeled in the i brand.
For more information see:
BMW planning plug-in hybrids across entire line, starting with X5 SUV: BMW says it is planning to make plug-in hybrid electric versions of every car they build, following the BMW i3 and BMW i8 with a plug-in hybrid version of the newly revamped BMW X5 SUV.
BMW i: SUVs ruled out for sub-brand’s expanding range
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