The BMW iX is the Bavarian automaker’s latest attempt at making a ground-up, all-electric vehicle since the i3. With Tesla pretty much covering the entire electric vehicle (EV) market, traditional automotive companies like BMW are having to play catch-up. While the iX might be a touch late to the party, its ‘SUV’ form-factor and BMW badge should help it entice buyers. It is built on the German marque’s CLAR (Cluster Architecture) platform, similar to many BMWs, and will take on the likes of the Tesla Model X and Audi e-tron. Upon its official entry sometime in 2021, the iX will become BMW’s flagship EV offering and most likely one of its most expensive models.
The BMW iX is a sizeable SUV, though it is smaller than the massive X7. However, unlike the latter, the iX is only a 5-seater by design. But the interior of the iX certainly seems far more contemporary and interesting when compared to the X7’s. There is extensive use of fabric and soft suede material all over, with bright blue seatbelts to signify this car’s electric personality.
BMW has also decorated the iX’s cabin with gold bronze accents, unvarnished and eco-friendly wood inserts, recycled plastics, and glass-effect on some of the surfaces. Then you also have a cool but slightly weird squircle-shaped steering wheel, backed by two widescreen displays for the instrument cluster and infotainment system.
BMW has also been really smart at packaging the interior of the iX. Because there is no massive hump on the floor or large drivetrain intrusions, legroom and kneeroom are more than sufficient. Plus, the large windows and an expansive glass roof makes the cabin of the iX feel airy and open. There is interior LED lighting too, while a banging Bowers & Wilkins sound system with 30 speakers and 1,615 watts could shatter your neighbor’s windows!
Safety in the iX is well taken care of as well, courtesy of multiple modern driver’s assistance systems which also includes a well-integrated heads-up display. As for its build quality, this is a proper BMW, and that means there is no cheapness to be found in this interior. That better be true as this will not be a cheap car.
Now getting to the inevitable elephant in the room – the iX’s exterior design. As you might have read, there has been quite a bit of controversy surrounding the exterior look of this SUV. The front fascia is undoubtedly the most polarizing. That humongous, vertically-arranged kidney grille is not exactly a sight for sore eyes, even if you are a BMW fan-boy.
Apparently, that semi-transparent grille is chock-full of sensors for the various driver-assistance technology and their requisite safety hardware. Moreover, I feel that the rear half of the iX is a bit too chubby and has a large overhang, far more than an ‘SUV’ should. BMW designers have done quite a bit to shift your focus on other aspects of the exterior, of course.
The iX features stylish and sleek LED headlamps, a sculpted front bumper and hood, large and extended wheel arches, and a ‘floating’ roof design. Other styling bits include slender LED tail lamps, sporty roof spoiler, a chiseled tailgate and rear bumper, fully-flush door handles, and blue accents at the front, sides and rear.
Overall, the exterior of the BMW iX isn’t as convincing as its suave interior. When it comes to its mechanicals, the BMW iX houses a 100kW battery and two electric motors. Maximum system output is rated at 496hp or 370kW, whilst maximum range according to USA’s EPA is supposedly north of 483 km or over 300 mi.
Also Read – Nissan Magnite To Be Launched On December 2
BMW claims the iX can get from 0 to 100 kmph in under 5 seconds, which is quite impressive for something this big and weighs nearly 2.5 tons. Meanwhile, charging the 100kW battery from 0 to 80 percent on a 200kW DC fast charger takes less than 40 minutes. An 11kW Wallbox charger can manage a full charge in under 11 hours, though that isn’t really practical for everyone. The German automaker hasn’t released any data on the iX’s top speed, but it probably won’t be much higher than 200 kmph. Also, there is no real confirmation on the BMW iX’s price, but as I mentioned earlier, it will be one of the brand’s more expensive propositions.