The Electrification of BMW and MINI

Everything that we know is about to change! That’s a bold statement, but given the scoop Autocar managed to grab from BMW’s Advanced Engineering Department, we are in for a wild ride regarding future BMW and MINI models. According to Autocar journalist Hilton Holloway, the BMW Group is on a quest to a radical engineering overhaul which will result in reinventing legacy cars into all-wheel-drive range-extender electric cars. To comply with EU fuel consumption regulations, future BMWs and Rolls-Royce will boast unprecedented EfficientDynamics technologies, including:

  • Mix of steel, aluminum and composites for body construction
  • Electric motors as primary drive source while combustion engines act as energy generators
  • Advanced aerodynamics to reducing air and rolling resistance at speed to a minimum
  • 3D connected navigation systems that anticipate traffic and road types

Although it will require some time before the Group can pack all these innovations into a single vehicle, we’re already witnessing the efforts of the Advanced Engineering Department with the successful i3, i8, and upcoming G11 7 series.

Autocar also provides a brief overview of BMW’s roadmap. The plan is to progressively ramp up these technologies across late BMW FXX models, GXX models, and finally HXX by 2022. While there’s no direct mention of MINI, our guess is that we will see glimpses of these advances starting with the plug-in hybrid Clubman.

Take the time to read Autocar’s piece as the information described is truly fascinating. For my part, I wonder how BMW will develop the 3D connected navigation system. Given their track-record in this area, I see them partnering with a major player from Silicon Valley.