BMW presents what could be its best-selling electric vehicle

  • BMW unveils a teaser image of the iX1 electric sport utility, which will debut later this year.
  • The small SUV, based on the FAAR platform, will offer a range of up to 272 miles in the WLTP cycle according to BMW.
  • The iX1 could become the automaker’s volume electric due to its versatility and starting price, which is expected to be under $50,000.

    With the BMW iX and i4 on the way to dealerships right now, and with the i7 fast approaching, due to be unveiled in a few weeks, 2022 is by far the biggest year for Munich EVs. .

    But while Bavaria’s last three battery-electric models landed towards the upper half of the price and size bracket, the next one will be a bit different. And in some ways it will replace the long-running BMW i3 of the last decade, in the sense that it could be the brand’s volume seller, even more popular than the iX3 currently on offer in Europe.

    The BMW iX1 will be that entry-level electric model, with the automaker revealing the first look at the next electric vehicle this week.

    Even though BMW only shared a digital fragment of the model’s front fascia, the iX1 has been seen long enough in spy footage to suggest it will look a lot like the gasoline-powered X1 on the outside.

    In that sense, it won’t be like the i3 at all, instead offering a fairly conventional profile and layout, mirroring the brand’s current SUVs. We expect it to look a bit like the iX, only smaller on the outside, which is why we expect it to become the brand’s most popular electric vehicle.

    The stylized teaser image likely depicts an M version of the upcoming model, simply because of the very aggressive intakes. The grille, you’ll notice, is hollow in the picture, but in reality it’s likely to be “filled in”, as with other electric BMWs revealed to date, with a surface pattern possibly similar to that of the iX.

    The iX1 is expected to be based on BMW’s FAAR platform, derived from the UKL used by a number of smaller BMW and Mini models and which can be used for internal combustion and electric models.

    The iX1 probably won’t quite be BMW’s line-up leader, but it should still be very competitive. The automaker discloses the model’s target range, between 412 and 438 kilometers, or 257 and 272 miles.

    We can probably assume at this point that the iX1 will have a slightly smaller battery than the iX3, which puts it between 68 and 74kWh, leaving some margin between it and the next bigger model while keeping the price down and curb weight under control. With three electric SUVs in the stable, BMW will need some separation between them.

    The iX1 is expected to debut with a sticker price of around $45,000 which, among other things, should allow it to compete with a number of established players in the segment such as the Tesla Model Y. Coming in, before the incentives, the iX1 should be a formidable luxury SUV in the market.

    We’ll see the iX1 in the metal later this year, closer to the fall, with production expected to start towards the end of 2022.

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