BMW put an early stake in the ground of the EV market with its sub-compact hatchback i3 battery-electric and its zoomy i8 hybrid-electric sports car. But those were slow-selling niche-market cars that helped the company learn the ropes of the EV business.
Now, BMW is ready to sell larger numbers of EVs to regular drivers. The new iX is a crossover SUV that is comparable in size, utility, and driving experience to BMW’s popular X5, but it is propelled by electrons rather than hydrocarbons.
It will launch as the iX xDrive50, nomenclature that means that it will have about 500 horsepower and be all-wheel drive.
The iX, as well as the upcoming i4 electric 4-series sedan, will employ BMW’s latest fifth-generation electric motors. These are designed to be modular, so these vehicles can have a single rear-mounted motor/transmission/power inverter module in the rear for rear-wheel drive, or have one at each end of the vehicle for all-wheel drive.
The iX’s production will start in November, with cars reaching showrooms in March 2022. The starting base price will be $84,195, including destination charges.