BMW has finally revealed the much anticipated all-electric Vision iNext concept. The production model electric SUV with advanced autonomous systems that will go on sale in 2021 and will provide the “building blocks” for the BMW Group’s future. The concept has been proposed as an electric alternative to an X5 kind-of- size of SUV, with serious autonomous, electric and different connected vehicle technologies.
Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management at the BMW Group, described iNext as “The iNEXT project will provide our building blocks for the future, from which the entire company and all of its brands are set to benefit. The BMW Vision iNEXT represents a new era of sheer driving pleasure. It underlines the leading role Germany plays in the future of mobility.”
Referring to the SUV as Project i 2.0, BMW is planning to launch 25 new electrified vehicles with a dozen fully electric cars by 2025. In terms of design, the newly revealed Vision iNext concept gets the BMW's signature double-kidney grille, Liquid Greyrose Copper exterior with matte appearance, slim headlights, offered as an ‘intelligent panel’ that houses sensors required for autonomous driving and a 3D-printed pattern with a semi-luminescent covering designed to hint at the systems it comprises.
Also talking about the concept, Klaus Fröhlich, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG said, “Personal mobility is set to experience significant change. The possibilities opened up by autonomous driving and ever-expanding connectivity enable a whole new range of experiences and ways of shaping a journey. With this in mind, we have designed the all-electric BMW Vision iNEXT as a mobile environment that enhances quality of life, a new “Favorite Space” in which we can be ourselves and relax. Indeed, all of BMW’s endeavors will continue to revolve around people – and their needs and desires when it comes to mobility – in the future.”
Differing from the exterior, the interior of the BMW iNext concept offers a minimalist, wood-based dashboard with digital displays and minimal switchgear with the front seats split by a coffee table-style centre console and the large rear seat designed to fit up to four people. Other than these, the seats feature unusual cloth upholstery, with the concept showcasing hidden ‘intelligent material’ touch controls built into the seats, referred as ‘shy tech’ by BMW. Other features include the two drive modes: Boost and Ease. While Boost focuses the steering wheel and display panels towards the driver, Ease mode makes the steering wheel fold away to create more space.
Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design talks about the creative approach by saying “BMW i exists to generate creative, pioneering ideas which transform the way we think about mobility. The BMW Vision iNEXT marks another next big step on that journey of transformation, showing how more intelligent vehicles can make our lives easier and more beautiful.”
The automaker has not yet revealed the powertrain options for the concept but we can expect it to come powered by BMW’s fifth-gen electric powertrain that will debut with the iX3 in 2020. According to the manufacturer, in the iNext, it would offer a 0-100 kmph time of around four seconds, with a range of around 612 km.
Since the production model of the iNext is due for 2021, BMW will also work on the SUV in order to make it suitable according to regulations and infrastructure in different countries. Stay tuned to V3cars.com for further updates on the upcoming BMW Vision iNext production model.