BMW has buckled down on EV's. Recent development of electric-only models have displayed the company's capabilities, and with this news, they show serious intent of moving forward with the program.
This move will help put BMW at the forefront of next generation technology. Of course, with seemingly every manufactuer shifting towards EV's, they will soon be followed by the rest of their competitors. Volkswagen won't be that far off by 2020, but even then, this step is certainly significant for the Bavarians. BMW has already sold 100,000 electric vehicles since the introduction of their i sub-brand, and they expect that number to double in the next year alone. The availability of electricity will work smoothly alongside autonomy, allowing for ultimate efficiency and convenience. This is where BMW gains the upper hand.
The company states that this will not hinder their development of autonomous vehicles, but it will instead compliment it. BMW has always aimed for best in class luxury and innovation. The decision to go green provides a smarter product for their consumers, and when combined with the amenities that such extensive driver aids provide, it starts a new evolution of products. BMW sees this as an opportunity to improve driving precision and power, building upon the "Ultimate Driving Experience" trademark.
BMW's CEO Harald Kruger wishes to improve drivetrain capabilities with these new technologies. He claims that the company will use the advantages of electric motors, like instant torque and added power, to supplement responsiveness. This move will instead be an addition of product development, not a substitute for it in other areas. By providing all of these features, they wish to simplify and enhance the overall experience that they put so much effort into. BMW Development Chief Klaus Frolich says “It’s not fun to drive in heavy traffic. It’s not fun to be in a dense area and try to find parking ...These autonomous abilities will be an option for the driver to choose, not the only mode. Our drivers will always have a choice, and our architectures can do both. It’s not rocket science. It’s not so difficult.”
This decision precedes the modern era of BMW. Electric cars that you can choose to drive on the twisties or choose not to when you feel like relaxing. Ultimate luxury and undeniable fun will continue on for the company, and by 2020, we should see more of it than ever before.