At the company’s annual press conference overnight, BMW teased the pure electric variant of its upcoming 5 Series sedan. Like other EVs in its range, the electric 5 Series will be known as the i5.
The new 5 Series sedan, codenamed G60, and likely the i5 too, will be launched in October 2023. It’s unclear when the i5 will be available in Australia, with the Europe, the US, and South Korea the initial focus for the model.
This i5 sedan will be joined by a wagon — Touring in BMW-speak — version in 2024. Also joining the 5 Series range in 2024 will be two plug-in hybrid drivetrains.
When the i5 Touring launches, it will enter the sparsely populated wagon segment of the ever-growing EV market. At present the only other entrant from a Western brand is the Porsche Taycan wagon, which is available in both regular Sport Turismo and the lifted Outback-style Cross Turismo variants.
Although the Taycan wagon and new i5 Touring should be around the same length, the BMW should be more spacious given its more upright tailgate and taller body.
The regular 5 Series, i5 sedan, and i5 wagon have been spied undergoing testing.
Oliver Zipse, BMW’s CEO, said today, the i5 will include “a fully electric Performance model from BMW M GmbH”. He noted the i4 M50 was the M division’s best selling model in 2022.
The i4 M50 has a two-motor all-wheel drive setup with a total of 400kW and 795Nm. The i4 M50 is capable of a 0-100km/h time of 3.9 seconds, making it faster than the standard rear-wheel drive M3 (4.2 seconds), line ball with 375kW/650Nm M3 Competition (3.9 seconds), but slower than the all-wheel M3 Competition (3.5 seconds).
By comparison, the 250kW/430Nm i4 eDrive40 and the 209kW/400Nm i4 eDrive35 both have a single motor driving the rear wheels.
As with the i4 “four-door coupe”, and i7 sedan, the i5 will ride on the CLAR architecture that supports petrol, diesel, plug-in hybrid, and fully electric drivetrains.
If BMW’s latest round of electric vehicles are anything to go by, visual differences between 5 Series models with internal combustion engines (ICE) and the i5 EV will be limited to the grille, wheels, badging, and, possibly, bumpers.
MORE: Everything BMW 5 Series