BMW Has Big Plans for Entry-Level EVs

It'll be a few years before we see the new models, though

BMW Neue Klasse
The forthcoming EVs will take cues from BMW's Neue Klasse.

While some automakers are slowing their speed towards a fully electric destination, there are still plenty of ambitious EVs in the pipeline, ready to roll up to a charging station near you in the coming years. And while that includes a number of high-end electric vehicles, other automakers — Jeep included — are looking to get a foothold in the entry-level EV space. And it sure sounds like the next company to explore this space will be BMW.

According to a report from Autocar’s Greg Kable and Mark Tisshaw, BMW has plans to follow up its discontinued but fondly remembered i3 with two new EVs: the i1 and i2. The latter will be a crossover, with “insiders” cited in the article calling it “a spiritual successor” to the i3. Kable and Tisshaw describe the i1 as “a hatchback or a saloon,” and report that it will go on sale in 2027, with the i2 following a year later.

The i1 and i2 will use electrical technology developed as part of BMW’s Neue Klasse series of concept vehicles. Autocar’s reporting suggests they will be available in front-wheel and four-wheel drive configurations. Autocar’s reporting doesn’t have many details on pricing, other than noting that these will presumably be less expensive than any of BMW’s current electric offerings. The i4, for instance, currently starts at $52,200.

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There’s plenty of evidence that auto buyers are interested in a range of vehicle classes and prices, making this move from BMW entirely understandable. And so far, the Neue Klasse vehicles that BMW has showcased have gotten high marks. Writing at Motor Trend earlier this year, Angus MacKenzie praised the Neue Klasse X for its “muscular fenders connected by a concave bodyside with a single, resolute character line across its lower third.”

How will that translate into the experience of driving the i1 and i2? That remains to be seen — but it’s encouraging to see BMW making forays into a number of EV styles.

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