A Blog by Jonathan Low


Apr 7, 2015

BMW Will Make Plug-In Hybrid Versions of All Future Models

BMW attracts a certain type of customer: moneyed, fashion conscious, sporty - and perhaps a bit showy.

So when a company whose appeal is to customers who want the better things in life - and want everyone to know it - but who do not necessarily subscribe to what might be termed progressive attitudes about social issues announces that every model it produces from now on will have a plug-in, hybrid twin, it suggests that such environmentally sensitive selections have crossed the all-important chasm from cause to consumable.

Cars have always communicated something about the owner's taste and class. Apple led the way in accessorizing technological devices. BMW's decision indicates that hybrids are not just a political statement, but a fashion statement. And the data reveal that fashion generally attracts a broader and deeper audience than does politics. JL

Sebastian Blanco reports in AutoBlog:

With the introduction of every new model there will be a plug-in hybrid version of that, too.
Late last year, BMW made it clear that it would be making plug-in hybrid versions of all of its "core models." The first of those will be the X5 xDrive40e. At the New York Auto Show this week, BMW North America CEO Ludwig Willisch told AutoblogGreen that this enhanced PHEV plan is going to be applied to "every new model."

We were asking Willisch if he views Tesla as a competitor to the Bavarian automaker. "I wouldn't say I don't see any competition," Willisch said, "but I still see that a BMW 5 Series and a Tesla are totally different animals." What about the rumored i5 or an i7, we started to ask – "which we don't have" Willisch interrupted – that could happen, couldn't it? "Not any time soon," Willisch said. "What we will have are plug-in hybrids. With the introduction of every new model there will be a plug-in hybrid version of that, too." There are people who are asking if the i brand will expand to a truck or a larger sedan, "but this is all the future," Willisch said. "It's not now and it's not the next couple years."


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