BMW to Begin Shifting Production Towards More Electric Vehicles
And it plans to pay for it by selling more SUVs.
Renewable energy is the future. And if Tesla taught us anything over the past few years, it's that Americans are nuts for premium-brand electric cars, even more so if they can rip down the quarter mile in 10.6 seconds. BMW, who has been known only as a luxury car manufacturer, seems to have caught a bug in its ear about this, and has officially announced their focus towards bringing more electric vehicles (EVs) to market.
At the company's annual earnings press conference in Munich, the CEO of BMW, Harald Krueger, went on record to state the future of the automaker's fleet:
The fully electric drivetrain will be integrated into our core brands,
BMW and Mercedes-Benz have both spent time at the drawing board to determine if electric cars will be a profitable market in the near future. The results? Both manufacturers project their sales will consist of between 15 and 25 percent electric or hybrid vehicles over the next eight years. This figure is a large jump in a small amount of time—especially since, of the 2.37 million cars which BMW sold in 2016, only 61,620 (a slim 2.6 percent) could be classified as an EV or hybrid.
BMW plans to increase the sales of their more profitable SUVs, which already make up 33 percent of its production, to aide in funding this venture. Additionally, the foundation of a plan to increase revenue over three-fold (from 30 million customers to over 100 million) is being put in place for the same time frame. 2025 isn't far away, and the future seems to be electric. As for manufacturing, this is likely to lead to either an expansion of the Leipzig BMW factory, which produces such models as the 225xe, i3, and i8, or the inclusion of the models into the production of other existing BMW plants to satisfy the projected demand.
Earlier today, BMW announced its entry into Formula E and excited the lot of us. This can't help but keep us wondering amidst all the new electric news; will we see even more EV BMW models, or maybe even an electric M-series car? Only time will tell.