The next generation of BMW car is here in the form of the iX. It’s an all-electric SUV boasting the latest technology, a huge footprint, and the largest and arguably most distracting grille in car design history. Previously known as the iNext in its concept form, BMW now classes this as a “series production development phase” vehicle.
The iX sits on a new architecture specifically developed for future BMW EVs, featuring large amounts of aluminium and a carbon fibre frame. Impressively, it has a Cd as low as 0.25. But its focus is less on the old idea of ‘the ultimate driving machine’ and more on autonomy than ever before. The onboard computer, for example, can now process 20 times the data the previous computer could, and that grille contains a host of radars, sensors, and other driving assistance technologies.
But just because the focus sits here, doesn’t mean it can’t heat up its rubber. A two-motor powertrain results in 500 horsepower and a 0-62mph time of under five seconds. Range comes in at a healthy 375 miles, and 40-minutes on a 200kW charger will give you 80% battery life. That’s impressive for such a hefty looking thing.
Inside you’re treated to a land of luxury, with a minimalistic layout thanks to a new innovation called ‘shy tech’. This allows for switches and controls to be hidden within a surface, in this case wood, with only white icon lights giving away that something is going on. The Drive controller now resembles a crystal clean ashtray and is touch-sensitive. The dashboard is simple, with barely visible speakers or appendages for the HUD, and the large touch screen has thin, clean borders.
We’re yet to hear a release date we can confidently stamp in our calendar, but BMW says production will start during the second half of 2021 at the marque’s Dingolfing plant with it hitting dealers at the end of the year.