BMW Concept i4 | Purely Electric Gran Coupe
The BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe revolutionized high-end performance car design. Where once the choice was between an exciting two-door coupe or a more staid sedan, the Gran Coupe brought all the swept-back sports appeal of a coupe to the four-door format.
Get Ready for BMW's New Zero-Emission Gran Coupe
And now BMW has added high-performance, zero-emission driving to Gran Coupe picture with the i4 New Concept, a pre-release prototype offering a sneak preview of the production models expected to follow.
At first glance, the Concept i4 is pitched as a direct Tesla Model 3 competitor, but with the added sheen of BMW's unmatched performance heritage. But what lies under the surface to push the car ahead of the EV pack?
See the New BMW i4 in Action:
Powertrain and Performance
In performance terms, the i4 new concept is no ordinary all-electric vehicle. Powered by an 80kWh battery, the motor pushes out a mammoth 530hp, producing a rated 0-100km/h acceleration in less than four seconds, coupled with a top speed of 200km/h plus.
The German makers predict a maximum range of 600km according to EU-style measurements. However, this rating could change as the vehicle moves toward a production setup tuned for daily driving rather than press release impact. Nonetheless, a range of this approximate size is plenty for most potential EV purchasers.
The final configuration is also expected to feature three selectable driving modes of Core, Sport, and Efficient for tweaking the balance between performance and range.
Where the styling of older BMW electric vehicles often met with a mixed response, the new concept i4 has a strikingly sporty design to match the impressive performance.
The side view is typically sleek BMW, with its swept back lines and low profile. However, from the front, the car is dominated by the huge kidney grille, which is said to be the housing for advanced sensor technology rather than any traditional air inlet.
This hints at some level of autonomous capability, but as yet, details of any self-driving tech are not forthcoming.
But whatever the reason for the grille, it's an imposing feature that makes a clear statement of high-performance intent.
Based around an expansive, curved touch display containing virtually all the instrumentation, the i4's console looks every bit a sign of the future. Finished with tinted, non-reflective glass, it gives a minimalist but impressive look while providing all the information a driver could want.
However, it's likely the rest of the rather sparse interior will evolve significantly to meet the requirements of a full production vehicle.
When to Expect the BMW i4 in Canada
As an early concept release, the i4 can be expected to change in many ways before it hits the road in numbers. However, the target is to begin production sometime in 2021, with a full Canadian release arriving shortly after.
Will it be a vehicle worth waiting for? From the stylish looks which uphold the BMW tradition to the performance levels that lead the EV pack, the chances are the BMW i4 New Concept could be a zero-emissions game-changer when it eventually sees public release.