Although BMW built its reputation on offering sporty, luxurious gas-burners and diesels, the future involves bigger batteries and electric motors.
BMW knows this, and now, its lineup includes standouts like the hybrid and all-electric BMW i3 city car, as well as the hybrid i8 sports car (which also just so happens to include a smattering of all-electric modes). Then there’s BMW’s numerous concept vehicles, such as the i Vision Dynamics that dropped last year, plus its iPerformance lineup, which includes the 330e sedan, 530e sedan, 740e sedan, and X5 xDrive40e SUV.
That’s a rather impressive number of models to sport extra electrons, but it makes sense in a rapidly changing market to hedge your bets. Until things start to settle, placing all your eggs in one basket is usually a recipe for disaster.
“First of all, we are convinced that we need more than one solution,” Juraschek told Digital Trends. “Customer behavior is changing. People are becoming more and more attracted to the experience of driving a hybrid or an electric car.”
Juraschek also pointed out that customers enjoyed the quiet operation and smoothness of electrified powertrains, and that after living with an EV, they were much less likely to go back to a gas-only option.
“We sent several hundred i3 owners a survey last year,” Juraschek explains. “Ninety percent of them told us they’re not going back to a car with an internal combustion engine. On the hybrid, we’ve got about 60 percent who are staying. Thirty percent will switch to a pure electric vehicle, while only 10 percent are going back to a combustion engine. Driving electric is attractive.”