BMW to produce i5 and i7 hybrids by 2018

500bhp i models with 80-miles of electric range rumoured

New rumours suggest BMW will build hybrid-electric equivalents of its 5- and 7-series saloons later this decade. Potentially named the i5 and i7, the new models would utilise power from both electric motors and combustion engines to offer increased range and more power.

Just recently, BMW had confirmed it was developing a hybrid version of its 3-series, and it already sells a hybrid version of the current 5-series (pictured), but the news of larger i cars comes with confirmation they’d be built on a new, long-wheel base 5-series based platform.

>Read – BMW 3-series plug-in hybrid

The platform would harness power from two electric motors – one powering the front axle and another the rear – as well as power from a turbocharged combustion engine. This would enable three modes for propulsion: pure-electric front-wheel drive, hybrid four-wheel drive and pure-electric rear-wheel drive.

Unsurprisingly, it's all still under early stages of development, but an all-electric range of 80-miles appears to be the target. If performance figures are to be believed, the twin-electric and combustion hybrid powertrain could produce over 500bhp in total, with close to half of that coming from a four-cylinder engine.

>Read - 2012 BMW 5-series Activehybrid review

Some are projecting a concept version of the car will arrive at the Frankfurt motor show later this year, before production begins in 2018. That would coincide with the enforcement of stringent new zero-emissions regs in the US, which will dictate that a minimum of 4.5 per cent of a manufacturer’s car sales must be zero-emission.

The Tesla Model S is expected to be a main rival, so a competitive £85,000 starting price would make sense. The hybrid BMWs will also have to posses a sporty character to take on the all-electric Tesla, something we know BMW can do thanks to its i8 sportscar.

>Read - Tesla Model S Performance review

Recommended

2021 BMW i4 revealed – all-electric 4-series to rival Tesla Model 3
BMW i4 front
BMW

2021 BMW i4 revealed – all-electric 4-series to rival Tesla Model 3

BMW’s next EV takes the form of an electrified 4-series Gran Coupe, topped out with a 530bhp M Performance flagship
17 Mar 2021
BMW M2 Competition vs Toyota GR Supra – the enemy within
BMW M2 Competition vs Toyota GR Supra - static
BMW

BMW M2 Competition vs Toyota GR Supra – the enemy within

The new Toyota Supra has more than a little BMW beneath its skin, so how will it compare with the real deal – the similarly priced BMW M2 Competition?
13 Feb 2021
BMW M8 Competition Gran Coupe vs Audi RS7 Sportback – battle of the alt-supersaloon
Audi RS7 vs M8 Comp GC - cornering
BMW

BMW M8 Competition Gran Coupe vs Audi RS7 Sportback – battle of the alt-supersaloon

BMW's grandest of M8 Competition Gran Coupes takes on our impressive fast-fleet Audi RS7
16 Jan 2021
2021 BMW iX revealed – the next big leap towards BMW’s BEV future
BMW

2021 BMW iX revealed – the next big leap towards BMW’s BEV future

500bhp all-electric SUV leads the charge for BMW’s EV range expansion
11 Nov 2020

Most Popular

Ferrari 812 'Competizione' confirmed – hardcore V12 berlinetta returns
Next lightweight Ferrari V12 berlinetta
Ferrari

Ferrari 812 'Competizione' confirmed – hardcore V12 berlinetta returns

Ferrari’s new limited-run berlinetta, the 812 Competizione, to follow in footsteps of the F12 TDF and 599 GTO
22 Apr 2021
Porsche 911 GT3 2021 review – has the 992-gen now peaked?
992 Porsche 911 GT3 front
Porsche 911 GT3

Porsche 911 GT3 2021 review – has the 992-gen now peaked?

Few cars have higher expectations than an all-new 911 GT3 and the new 992 hasn't disappointed, but we'll need more time with it on-road to get a true …
20 Apr 2021
All-electric Opel Manta GSe restomod revealed
Opel Manta GSe
Vauxhall

All-electric Opel Manta GSe restomod revealed

Opel Manta GSe resto-mod previews Vauxhall’s electric GSe performance sub-brand
20 Apr 2021