Vehicles will need to be purely electric, sustainable in every way, more intelligent than ever and capable of conversing naturally with the driver to provide the driving pleasure of the future, as showcased by BMW at the Auto Shanghai 2021 show. And drivers will soon be able to experience this progressive form of personal mobility on the road in the BMW iX. The new model will celebrate its world premiere in real-life, series-produced form as the centrepiece of BMW’s presence in Shanghai, and its market launch in China will get underway over the course of 2021. The BMW Group’s new technology flagship embodies the company’s innovative talents in the areas of design, electric mobility, driving pleasure, sustainability, luxury and connectivity.
The BMW iX is first model in the brand’s line-up to feature the new Operating System 8 and the latest generation of BMW iDrive, which turns the interaction between the driver and vehicle into an intuitive, personal and emotionally engaging experience. At the same time, Operating System 8 provides the basis for the seamless integration of additional digital services. The enhanced possibilities for using market-specific apps in China that this enables brings another focal point to BMW’s presentation at Auto Shanghai 2021. Additional highlights include the world premiere of the BMW 7 Series Two-Tone special-edition model created exclusively for customers in China and a look ahead to the fully electric BMW i4 in M Sport specification.
Auto Shanghai is one of the world’s largest and most significant automotive shows and offers a fascinating overview of the latest industry trends and innovations once again this year. On 21 – 28 April 2021, automotive manufacturers, suppliers and service providers from around the world will flock to the halls of the National Exhibition and Convention Center (NECC) in China’s commercial capital to show off their new models, products and technologies. As an open-to-the-public event, Auto Shanghai 2021 will be held in compliance with strict hygiene regulations and feature extensive use of digital technology.
The BMW iX: opening the gates to a new era of personal mobility.
The physical world premiere of the BMW iX provides visitors to Auto Shanghai 2021 with a window into a new era of personal mobility. Developed around the BMW Group’s new, modular scalable toolkit as a modern Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV), the new model espouses a future-focused view of design, sustainability, driving pleasure, versatility and luxury. The BMW iX is wrapped in a clean-sheet design majoring on precision and minimalism. It combines the locally emission-free driving pleasure and sporting agility provided by electric all-wheel drive and a persuasive operating range with a character profile dedicated to sustainability from the ground up. This covers the whole lifecycle of the vehicle – from the sourcing of raw materials through manufacturing and use to subsequent recycling.
The BMW iX will be offered in two model variants when it goes on sale in late 2021. The electric motors fitted in the BMW iX xDrive50 and BMW iX xDrive40 are – like the power electronics, charging technology and high-voltage batteries – the product of fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology. This means output, dynamism, long-range driving ability and efficiency are all outstanding. The electric all-wheel drive of the BMW iX xDrive50 channels maximum output of more than 370 kW/500 hp to the road, enabling acceleration of 0 – 100 km/h (62 mph) in under 5.0 seconds, while also posting a range of more than 600 kilometres (373 miles) and power consumption below 21 kWh per 100 kilometres in the WLTP test cycle. The BMW iX xDrive40 has an output of more than 240 kW/300 hp and completes the sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in a shade over 6.0 seconds. Its range is in excess of 400 kilometres (249 miles) and consumption less than 20.0 kWh per 100 kilometres. (All figures relating to performance, energy consumption and range are predicted values based on the car’s current stage of development.)
Like its electric all-wheel drive, the versatile interior of the new car also fits the character of a modern SAV. The vehicle concept and design of the BMW iX attaches a whole new level of focus to the needs of those on board. The car has been developed from the inside out. Its interior offers innovative options for using the time during a journey – and enjoying relaxation, safety, security, and a new form of luxury in the process.
The new technology toolkit, making its debut in the BMW iX, also underpins significant advances in the areas of connectivity and digital services. For example, the tech is designed to be able to process 20 times more data than existing models. And that means many times more sensor data can be processed. The sensor technology itself is likewise more powerful than ever. The BMW iX is also 5G-capable, enabling fast and reliable transfer of large quantities of data between the vehicle and the BMW Cloud.
The new BMW iDrive with seamlessly integrated digital services from Tencent.
The new generation of BMW iDrive lays on an all-encompassing, intelligent, multi-sensory experience tailored to the driver. A natural dialogue is created between the user and their vehicle with the aim of precisely tailoring all the functions controlled via BMW iDrive to the driver’s needs and preferences as the situation demands.
For many years now, BMW has offered customers around the world extensive integration of digital services from third-party providers via its iDrive system. Market-specific applications and services have also been integrated seamlessly into the vehicle’s operating system. Display and operation here will be familiar to customers from their smartphones. As well as the offerings from Apple and Google, apps relevant to the Chinese market provided by local platforms are also integrated. The introduction of BMW Operating System 8 and the latest iDrive generation takes the integration of services from Chinese platform Tencent, in particular, to a new level.
The Operating System 7 found in existing BMW models already enables integration of applications from Tencent which are extremely popular in China. The key ingredient here is the mini program platform from Tencent, which allows digital services in the areas of communication, travel, entertainment, infotainment, edutainment and gaming to be integrated seamlessly into the vehicle’s operating system. New features presented with the introduction of the latest-generation BMW iDrive include the newly developed integration of digital communication service WeChat.
Like the mini program platform as a whole, the WeChat application is integrated natively into the BMW Operating System. This means the functions included in the WeChat app can be operated in extremely user-friendly fashion via the on-board iDrive system, and are viewed on the BMW Curved Display in the familiar way. The various content is shown according to need and context on the information display or control display in the digital screen grouping. The individual functions can be activated quickly and intuitively via the operating system’s selectable apps menu.
The new integrated applications from Tencent will be available from the launch of the BMW iX in China. The initial range of WeChat functions that can be used comfortably, easily and safely in the vehicle via these applications include WeChat phone calls, voice messaging and sharing of location data, which can then be adopted immediately as a navigation destination. Additional functions and apps will also be integrated into the BMW Operating System and updated using the Tencent mini program platform in the future. You can find further information on the new generation of BMW iDrive here.
Stylish luxury for China: the BMW 7 Series Two-Tone special-edition model.
A new special edition of the BMW 7 Series embodying a unique combination of luxury, poise and exclusivity is set to be unveiled for the first time at Auto Shanghai 2021. The BMW 7 Series Two-Tone exudes an exceptionally stylish allure with its Cashmere Silver metallic/Aventurine Red metallic paintwork. The luxury sedan is based on the 12-cylinder BMW M760Li xDrive and will be produced in a limited run of just 25 examples exclusively for customers in China.
As well as BMW’s market-specific interpretation of exclusive driving enjoyment, visitors to Auto Shanghai 2021 will also be greeted by the latest expression of race-car thrills for everyday use – as BMW M GmbH presents its new high-performance sports cars for the premium midsize segment. The BMW M3 Competition Sedan (fuel consumption combined: 9.8 – 9.6 l/100 km [28.8 – 29.4 mpg imp] in the WLTP cycle; CO2 emissions combined: 224 – 219 g/km in WLTP) and BMW M4 Competition Coupé (fuel consumption combined: 9.8 – 9.6 l/100 km [28.8 – 29.4 mpg imp] in WLTP; CO2 emissions combined: 224 – 219 g/km in WLTP) will be launched in China imminently. The signature M characteristics of the 375 kW/510 hp six-cylinder in-line engine powering the two models, chassis technology optimised using racing car expertise and new setup customisation options provide owners with an inimitable experience of performance at work.
A look ahead to the BMW i4 in M Sport specification.
At Auto Shanghai 2021 the BMW i4 will offer a first impression of the BMW i4 with the M Sport equipment line set to be made available in China and other markets.
The BMW i4 is a fully electric four-door gran coupé, whose market launch is scheduled for 2021. Its perfect balance of customary BMW sporting ability, long-distance comfort and sustainable performance is unique in this segment. The BMW i4 model range will include a selection of variants enabling a range of up to 590 km / 367 miles in the WLTP cycle or up to 300 miles in EPA testing. The BMW i4 develops output of up to 390 kW /530 hp, enabling it to accelerate from 0 – 100 km/h (62 mph) in four seconds.