More than just a pretty (?) face: electric BMW i4 Concept finally revealed
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First it was teased, then it was leaked, and now the BMW i4 Concept has been revealed in all its glory.
While the 'concept' tag-line may take the edge off the unveiling somewhat, as we noted yesterday the angular sedan remains highly newsworthy because of how production ready it looks to be, relative to BMW's other concepts from years gone by.
As previously reported, the i4 packs 395kW of power and 600km of potential range per charge (according to the WLTP cycle), via an 80kWh battery. The sprint to 100km/h is said to take around four seconds, and top speed is rated at around 200km/h.
The cabin layout is the main area we expect to see altered before the i4 hits production. The Gold Bronze elements and crystal buttons are nice, but will likely be wound back a few clicks for production. It also features a complex 'BMW IconicSounds Electric' audio system developed by famed composer Hans Zimmer.
Among the more interesting features is the non-reflective glass used for the curved combined digital cluster and primary touchscreen. Fingers crossed that this tech not only makes it to production, but also becomes more mainstream across the world's automotive touchscreen landscape.
Being an EV, one of the more unique but not so surprising features of the i4's interior is that it's only a four seater — a measure generally taken to allow for more precious battery room underneath. Plenty of other electrified cars, like the Toyota Prius Prime, follow this same template. But among those that don't is the 5-seater Tesla Model 3.
The i4 is almost certain to be priced out of the league of the range-topping Model 3 Performance, but comparisons between the two remain inevitable. For reference, the Tesla is quicker to 100km/h (3.4 seconds), has a higher top speed (261km/h), and is priced in New Zealand at $105,200.
Tesla's claimed range figures are based on data from the NEDC, with the Performance sitting at 560km to a change and the $95,900 Long Range variant sitting at 620km to a charge. But, if you use WLTP-sourced figures like those utlised in the i4's release, range for the Model 3 Performance and Long Range falls to 530km and 560km, respectively.
You can talk tech and range until the cows come home, but it's the i4's design that'll continue to make headlines. As we've reported, this ginormous grille is set to be echoed on the upcoming BMW 4 Series, and it may also find its way onto other vehicles in the German brand's line-up. Time (and vocal fans alike) will tell whether the bold new look will hang around for long.