BMW is celebrating a significant milestone in its transition to electrified motoring, with the first series-produced examples of the BMW i4 rolling off the production line in Munich, Germany.
The milestone is particularly significant given that BMW is aiming for its Munich plant to really scale-up the production of hybrid and electric vehicles by 2023, forecasting that “at least” half of all models rolling off the Munich line will come in the form of a battery electric or hybrid powertrain.
The feat was made more impressive by the fact that BMW was able to re-tool parts of its 100-year-old production line in Munich without any disruptions to the wider vehicle output, thanks to a 200-million-euro investment.
This is in addition to the fact that 90 per cent of BMW’s updated production line can be used for the production of the all-electric i4, as well as sedan and Touring wagon variants of the plug-in hybrid 3 Series, the M3, and the 4 Series Gran Coupe. Peter Weber, director of BMW Group Plant Munich, said:
“We are well aware that, owing to the city location of our production facility, we have a special responsibility. Our project to reduce CO2 emissions at our home plant will have a major impact that’s positive both for the environment and for our immediate neighbourhood.”
BMW is hedging its bets on the success of the i4 around the globe, with Australian prices sitting at $99,990 for the entry-level i4 eDrive40, and jumping to $124,990 for the sportier i4 M50 variant.
The eDrive40 features a 250kW/430Nm electric motor paired with an 80.7kWh battery pack, translating to a claimed range on the WLTP cycle of 590km, while the i4 M50 uses a dual-motor setup with 350kW/730Nm as standard, while offering up to 400kW/795Nm for 10-second bursts of overboost.
The first deliveries are scheduled to arrive here in Australia during the first quarter of 2022.