Preview by Veeno Dewan.
Richmond Hill, ON. BMW Canada recently announced the second installment of the all-electric iX preview series, discussing the latest eDrive technology and the comprehensive sustainability measures taken to ensure that the iX is the most advanced and most sustainable vehicle yet to be brought out by the BMW Group. The new iX will arrive with a pair of high-efficiency electric motors generating 500 combined horsepower to all four wheels and a projected 0-100 km/h time of under five seconds.
“Technology is driving the advances we need to tackle even the greatest challenges. This applies, in particular, to climate protection,” says Oliver Zipse, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. “We are in no doubt: mobility has to be sustainable if it is to represent a truly outstanding solution. For the BMW Group, premium mobility is not possible without responsibility.”
The sustainability targets for the BMW iX xDrive50 were set during the very early stages of vehicle development. This includes the upstream production chains. The focal points on the purchasing side are compliance with environmental and social standards, respect for human rights, conservation of natural resources and reduction of CO2 emissions. Measures for optimizing sustainability were established in partnership with suppliers, such as using recycled materials and harnessing renewable energy.
The cabin of the BMW iX xDrive50 features carefully selected sustainable materials. The key elements here are conservation of resources, energy efficiency in manufacture and suitability for recycling. The only touch of chrome anywhere in the interior is found in the BMW badge on the steering wheel. The optional Clear & Bold specification includes a control panel on the center console made from sustainably grown wood with the corresponding FSC certification.
High-quality recycled material is also featured in a multitude of other components in the BMW iX. Recycled material accounts for over 20 per cent of the thermoplastic content in the vehicle. The substructure of the door panelling, the cowl panel cover, the bumper guides and the surround for the front bumper, for example, are all made entirely from reused plastic. The cable ducts on the BMW iX xDrive50 are manufactured using between 60 and 100 per cent recycled plastic, while the tailgate panelling and the outer surfaces of the door panelling are both made up of around 30 per cent recycled material. Each BMW iX contains some 132 pounds of recycled plastic in total.
Two high-efficiency electric motors driving four wheels will deliver around 500 combined horsepower and performance that owners have come to expect from their BMWs. The high level of drive system efficiency and higher density high-voltage batteries improve driving dynamics and electric power consumption. The drive system and battery technology in the BMW iX teams up with intelligent lightweight construction and an aerodynamically optimized design to create a package which delivers the sporting ability, sustainability and impressive practicality for which the brand is renowned.
The electric motors, developed in-house by the BMW Group, have an efficiency factor of 93 per cent. The specific qualities of these electric motors are the result of a design which marks a fundamental departure from the technology normally found in competitor units. They work according to the principle of a current-excited synchronous motor. The excitation of the rotor in the BMW iX motors is not induced by fixed permanent magnets, but the feed-in of electric energy. This allows the rare earths required for magnetic components to be entirely avoided in the manufacture of the motors. The BMW iX xDrive50 posts acceleration of 0 to 62 mph in under 5.0 seconds with a top speed of an electronically governed 124 mph.
The fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology also includes a high-voltage battery with state-of-the-art battery cell technology. The gravimetric energy density of the lithium-ion battery has been increased by around 20 per cent gain over the previous-generation battery and provides an excellent mass to storage ratio.
Topping up the high-voltage battery from a Level 2 home charger can be done at up to 11 kW. Using this method, the BMW iX xDrive50 can recharge its battery from totally empty to 100% in under eleven hours.
A significantly higher charging output and the shorter charging times can be accessed by plugging into a DC fast-charging station. The BMW iX xDrive50 can charge its high-voltage battery at up to 200 kW. When hooked up to a DC charging station, the iX can take enough energy on board in just ten minutes to increase the car’s range by more than 75 miles. The high-voltage battery’s charge can be increased from 10 to 80 per cent of its full capacity in under 40 minutes. The new iX xDrive50 pricing and availability for is to announced with deliveries likely in 2022.