BMW Plans Big Expansion of Plug-in Cars

                         BMW Plans Big Expansion of Plug-in Cars
2016 BMW X5 xDrive40e Cars.com photo by Aaron Bragman — BMW Group, the German automaker behind BMW, Mini and Rolls-Royce, plans to roll out hybrid and electric cars in spades. At Frankfurt's International Motor Show Germany this week, the automaker laid out plans to introduce dozens of electrified vehicles over the next decade in a strategy that would eventually affect even Rolls-Royce and BMW M vehicles. Related: BMW Confirms Return of 8 Series Coupe Shoppers' demands "cannot be forced," said BMW chairman Harald Kruger according to a transcript of remarks. Kruger said the automaker doesn't favor "driving bans and quotas" — no doubt a reference to Britain's plans to ban diesel and gasoline cars in 2040 — but consumers' needs "must be anticipated and met." Toward that end, BMW Group will offer 10 electrified cars — a term for hybrids, plug-in hybrids or fully electric cars — this fall en route to 25 such cars by 2025, with a dozen of them fully electric. Beginning in 2020, BMW plans to offer every model with all types of drivetrains. Among them will be a fully electric version of the X3 SUV in 2020 under BMW's "i" electric sub-brand; officials also hinted at a vision for a four-door car between the i3 and i8. It's unclear how many of these cars will make it to the U.S., where BMW currently offers six electrified models: the battery-powered i3 hatchback, which has an optional gasoline Used Engine -generator to extend range, plus the plug-in hybrid i8 and plug-in hybrid versions of the X5 SUV and 3 Series, 5 Series and 7 Series sedans. Mini also offers a plug-in hybrid version of the Countryman SUV. Combined, those variants account for only about 1 in 20 U.S. sales for BMW Group, but that's an impressive share for SUV-hungry America. The automaker says sales of its electric and plug-in hybrid cars are up 9.2 percent through August, amounting to 11,672 cars sold in the first eight months of 2017 — about 5.2 percent of all BMW Group sales over the same span. By contrast, U.S. sales for all hybrids, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles amounted to just 1.1 percent of new-car sales in that period, according to estimates from InsideEVs.com and sales totals from Automotive News. Share