WHAT IT IS: BMW‘s flagship electric SUV comes with a long list of brand firsts. It features a new platform, a new styling language inside and out, new technology, and more. Roughly the size of the brand’s X5, the iX is BMW’s long-awaited entry in the electric luxury SUV segment. And yes, the bucktooth false grille is really happening; it’s a convenient place for BMW to mount the sensors needed for advanced driver assistance systems.
WHY IT MATTERS: BMW says the iX is its new technology flagship, a big deal for a company that’s long-heralded its 7 Series as its technological standard-bearer. The iX introduces a new aluminum and carbon-fiber structure, house-made electric motors, and the most advanced computer system BMW has ever put in a car. It’s also designed and built with sustainability in mind, BMW says, from material sourcing to assembly to end-of-life recyclability.
PLATFORM AND POWERTRAIN: BMW’s done electric cars before, but the iX ushers in a new generation and a new platform to go with it. Like most EVs, it packages the batteries, co-developed with a supplier, within the floor. Front and rear electric motors designed and built by BMW provide 516 hp and 564 lb-ft of torque and allow the iX to hit 60 mph in a claimed 4.6 seconds. The 112-kWh battery should provide up to 300 miles of range, and it can be charged from 10 percent to 80 percent in less than 40 minutes on a 200-kW DC fast charger.
ESTIMATED PRICE: Flagships don’t come cheap, and neither do luxury SUVs. BMW says the iX xDrive50 will start at $84,195, and it’s a safe bet you’ll be able to add thousands of dollars in options, including the likes of adaptive dampers and air suspension. The company hasn’t said whether there will be multiple configurations of batteries and motors, but its competitors have taken the approach of introducing the most expensive configuration first and adding less powerful models—with a shorter driving range—later. A 600-plus-hp iX M60 has been announced.
EXPECTED ON-SALE DATE: Early 2022