BMW’s new electric flagship, the strikingly styled iX SUV, will go into full production at the company’s Dingolfing, Germany plant later this year with a choice of two powertrains.
The recently detailed entry-level iX xDrive40 uses the same two-engine, four-wheel-drive configuration as the top-of-the-line xDrive50, but with reduced power output from 500hp to “over 300hp” (296hp). . It has been priced to match a ‘comparable’ conventional fuel BMW X5 and will start from £ 69,000.
Despite the power deficit, the less performance-oriented model is only about a second slower on the dash from 0-62mph than the xDrive50, at “a tint above 6.0s,” and is capable of the same top speed of 124 mph.
The iX xDrive40 delivers a claimed range of over 249 miles per charge from its 70kWh-plus battery, while the more expensive car’s 100kWh-plus pack increases range to 373 miles.
BMW has optimized range by increasing the energy density of the batteries, rather than the size of the units themselves, in an effort to reduce weight. The xDrive40 is capable of charging at speeds of up to 150 kW, which according to BMW is fast enough to gain over 90 kilometers of charging in as little as 10 minutes, while the xDrive50 has a charging capacity of 200 kW for 75 miles in 10 minutes. According to the company, the two cars can be recharged from 10% to 80% of their capacity in less than 40 minutes and consume less than 21 kWh of electricity per 100 kilometers driven on average.
Over 125,000 miles, BMW claims that the iX xDrive40 has 45% lower global warming potential than a comparable diesel car.
The company is striving to improve the sustainability of its supply chain and the increased use of recycled materials for the iX helps reduce emissions from the production process by 18%.
BMW now also sources the cobalt and lithium used for its EV batteries, to ensure that “environmental and sustainability standards are met.”
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