More than two years ago, BWW set out to launch a new class of high-tech vehicles with greatly improved efficiency. The company revealed its “Vision Neue Klasse” for the first time on Saturday, giving us a glimpse into what the BMW brand will look like in the future.
Chief Executive Officer Oliver Zipsey BMW’s three-step plan revealed In March 2021 to transform the automaker in the wake of the electric age.
The first phase involved the “i” pilot project, the transfer of electrical know-how into series production using models (particularly hybrid cars) such as the i3 and i8.
For its second phase, BMW has begun offering all-electric powertrain options in some of its most popular grades, with the i4, i5, i7 and more. Now, the automaker is giving us a glimpse into its third phase with the BMW Vision Neue Klasse.
The term “Neue Klasse” refers to the small BMW sports cars released in the 1960s that helped shape a new segment for the brand.
Frank Weber, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for development, said:
With Neue Klasse, we have embarked on the largest investment in the company’s history. We’re not just writing the next chapter of BMW; We’re writing a brand new book. It is for this reason that the Neue Klasse will certainly influence all generations of models.
The new class of vehicles, scheduled to debut in 2025, will be based on a significantly improved EV platform designed to shape the future of the brand. BMW says the new series will feature 30 percent greater range, 30 percent faster charging, and an overall 25 percent improvement in vehicle efficiency.
Meet the electrified BMW Vision Neue Klasse models
Exterior design features will define the different models of the BMW Neue Klasse. As explained by the Head of BMW Group Design: “The design of the Neue Klasse is typical of BMW, it is very progressive and it feels like we have skipped a generation.”
There is no denying that. You can see signature BMW features like the muscular wheel arches, retractable greenhouse and ‘shark-nose’ front end, but in a somewhat futuristic upgrade.
The new electric vehicle concept incorporates an almost homogeneous vehicle body, large windows, and indentations at the front and rear ends, giving it a unique aesthetic.
Other design elements such as the distinctive BMW kidney grille and the twin headlights are integrated into one area at the front.
The next generation of BMW iDrive
Neue Klasse forms will be loaded with The next generation of BMW iDrive. Interaction with the car will be done through the BMW Panoramic View, the central display, and (few) buttons on the steering wheel. Other than that, most of the analog controls are removed.
For the first time, BMW Neue Klasse cars will feature BMW Panoramic View, a new high-tech head-up display projected onto the lower third of the windshield.
The new BMW 3D head-up display presents active driving information with 3D animation. With the multifunction steering wheel, users can control the contents of the Panoramic View Monitor and BMW 3D Head-Up Display with their eyes on the road and their hands on the steering wheel.
BMW says the simple interior, completely devoid of chrome or ornate leather, will help improve its carbon footprint during production.
The Neue Klass focuses on efficiency both inside and outside the vehicle. BMW says the new electric models will be built at its new plant in Debrecen, Hungary “completely without fossil fuels and with much wider use of raw materials and by-products produced with lower CO2.”
The vehicles will be highly energy efficient with improved weight, aerodynamics and rolling resistance along with an intelligent heat management system.
In addition to the highly efficient electric motors, developments in BMW eDrive technology include new round battery cells, which offer an energy density 20 percent higher than previous prismatic cells. Charging speed will also be improved by up to 30% while range will be boosted by up to 30%.
These changes increase overall vehicle efficiency by up to 25 percent, according to BMW. The introduction of the BMW Neue Klasse is expected to begin in 2025 with two new models. The first is expected to be a production version of the model shown at the IAA, while the second will be an SUV.
The Vision Vehicle will be shown to the public for the first time at the IAA Mobility in Munich from September 5-10.
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