BMW’s new electric flagship, the strikingly styled iX SUV, will launch in the UK in November with a choice of two powertrains and pricing starting from £69,905.
The entry-level iX xDrive40 uses the same twin-motor, four-wheel-drive configuration as the xDrive50 range-topper but with power output reduced from 500bhp to 296bhp. It has been priced to match a “comparable” conventionally fuelled BMW X5. A range-topping iX M60 version will be launched later this year.
The iX xDrive 40 can complete the 0-62mph dash in 6.1 seconds, with a 124mph top speed. The iX xDrive40 offers a claimed range of more than 249 miles per charge from its 70kWh-plus battery pack, which can be charged at up to 150kW.
Meanwhile, the iX xDrive 50 will be priced from £91,905 and will offer 516bhp, a 0-62mph time of 4.6secs and the same limited 124mph top speed. It has a 100kWh-plus pack boosts range to 373 miles, and features 200kW charging. It also features active steering and air suspension.
Both models will be offered in the UK in Sport and M Sport trims. As standard, Sport includes a 12.3in digital instrument display, which links with the 14.9in touchscreen to create a ‘curved’ display unit, an 18-speaker Harmon/Kardon audio system, 21in wheels and a range of driver assistance systems.
M Sport trim adds an aerodynamics pack with bespoke front and side aprons, rear diffuser and air curtain, M Sport brakes and an Anthracite roof.
BMW has optimised range by increasing the energy density of the batteries, rather than the size of the units themselves, in an effort to keep weight down. The xDrive40 is capable of charging at speeds of up to 150kW, which, BMW claims, is fast enough to gain more than 56 miles of charge in as little as 10 minutes, whereas the xDrive50 has 200kW charging capability for 75 miles in 10 minutes. Both cars, the company claims, can be charged from 10% to 80% capacity in less than 40 minutes and use less than 21kWh of electricity per 62 miles travelled, on average.
Over the course of 125,000 miles, BMW claims, the iX xDrive40 has a 45%-lower global warming potential than that of a comparable diesel car.
The company is working to improve the sustainability of its supply chain and the increased use of recycled materials for the iX helps to cut production process emissions by 18%.
BMW now also procures the cobalt and lithium used for its EV batteries itself, to ensure that “environmental and sustainability standards are observed”.