In a recent interview, BMW CEO Harald Krüger confirmed that the marque is developing an new electric car, in the same vein as the BMW i8 and i3. This version is thought to be a four door crossover sedan, featuring some of the design elements from the other i cars.
The i5 will be large than the i3, and sit higher thanks to a larger underfloor battery pack. “The new BMW i model will be larger than the BMW i3, that’s all I will say for now,” Krueger said. “We want to expand our e-mobility offering to accelerate the transition towards electric vehicles. Today, many buyers still decide against buying an electric car; demand is still low overall.”
Although Krueger is keeping quiet, and the car isn’t due to arrive in 2017 or 2018, that hasn’t stopped people speculating what it might look like. Theophilius Chin has rendered the i5 to give some clues as to where the design team might head in the next few years. It has increased dimensions, a new hatchback-inspired side profile and a four door layout. In front, it looks a lot like the i8, with a shark-shaped nose and sleek headlights. It’s expected to have a range of around 200 miles at the most.
Chin isn’t the only one to be speculating, however. Reports from China suggest that BMW design patents have been circulated on the internet. These could well be official designs filed with the Chinese trademark office, but could just as easily be forgeries designed to fool the market. The car featured on the design does resemble a combination of the i8 and i3, and has a three-door layout.
Without any official confirmation either way, we’ll just have to wait until the new hybrid BMW is announced – hopefully sooner rather than later!