BMW’s first ground-up, all-electric SUV is arriving this year.

    The 2022 BMW iX touches down in the fourth quarter of 2021, which means it should arrive in showrooms shortly after the X3-based iX3 EV.

    It’ll be offered in two variants: the xDrive40 and xDrive50, both with dual-motor all-wheel drive.

    Pricing and features will be revealed closer to launch.

    The xDrive40 produces 240kW of power, with a claimed WLTP range of more than 400km and a 0-100km/h time of approximately 6.0 seconds.

    The xDrive50 produces 370kW, has an electric range of more than 600km, and sprints to 100km/h in less than 5.0 seconds.

    The xDrive40’s battery unit has a gross energy content of more than 70kWh while the xDrive50’s is more than 100kWh.

    Average power consumption is less than 20kWh/100km in the xDrive40 and less than 21kWh/100km in the xDrive50.

    The iX supports DC fast charging at up to 150kW for the xDrive40 and up to 200kW for the xDrive50, allowing 90km and 120km of capacity, respectively, to be added in just 10 minutes.

    Unlike BMW’s other upcoming electric models, the iX rides a bespoke platform designed specifically for EVs.

    Thanks to its flat undercarriage, flush-fitting door handles and closed-off grille, the iX has a drag coefficient of 0.25 – a pretty impressive number for a large crossover.

    As with the exterior, the interior is also a marked departure from the BMW norm with a “lounge-like” cabin featuring BMW’s largest ever panoramic roof, and front seats with integrated headrests.

    The material for the seats – whether it be fabric or leather – is also liberally applied to the doors and dashboard top.

    According to BMW, the centre console has been “crafted to look like a high-quality piece of furniture” and optionally features a crystal-like finish for the infotainment touch controller.

    Glass-look pieces are also used for the electric seat controls and volume rocker switch.

    Ahead of the driver is a hexagonal steering wheel, and a large freestanding curved block housing a 12.3-inch instrumentation display and a 14.9-inch infotainment touchscreen, which controls most of the car’s features.

    The iX will debut BMW’s latest iDrive system running BMW Operating System 8.

    There’s been a focus on sustainability with the iX.

    The company obtains the cobalt and lithium required for the batteries from controlled sources in Australia and Morocco, and the cells are then manufactured at BMW’s Dingolfing plant which is powered by green energy sources.

    BMW has also made extensive use of recycled and natural materials, including FSC-certified wood, leather tanned with olive leaf extracts, and floor mats made from old fishing nets.

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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