BMW has secured the naming rights to a number of important badges recently. The Munich-based manufacturer took the unusual step of briefing the press to confirm that the BMW i1 to i9 badges had been secured alongside the iX1 and iX9 badges.
The move confirms a planned expansion of BMW’s electric range. BMW currently sells two i-badged cars in the i3 city car and the i8 plug-in hybrid. It plans to add a further two electric cars in years to come with an i5 rumoured and the suggestion of an i9 coming soon.
The iX1 badges will likely indicate SUV variants. BMW currently plans to release a BMW iX3, a fully electric version of the BMW X3, in 2020. It will be BMW’s first electric SUV.
It is thought that BMW are also planning to build an electric flagship model using the i9 badge. Talk has already indicated that the project is currently code-named iNext and is set for production in 2021.
BMW might also choose to replace the BMW i8 with an electric version of the upcoming 8-Series coupe. Any electric version is likely to be a considerable way down the line though. BMW are focusing on getting the BMW M8 finished first!
The breadth of the trademark filings indicates that BMW might soon expand it’s SUV range too, adding an X8 and X9 to the top of it’s rapidly expanding SUV range. BMW are expected to launch two new SUV’s next year, the X2 and the three-row X7.
In terms of sales, BMW’s projections are that it will sell 100,000 electrified vehicles worldwide this year. BMW are focusing on hitting 150,000 next year with plans to offer 25 electrified models, including 12 fully electric cars by the end of 2025.
BMW’s fifth-generation of storage and battery technology, unveiled in BMW’s i Vision Dynamics concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show this year, has a range of 600 km (373 miles). BMW’s iPerformance label will continue to service its popular hybrid models.