BMW is going fully battery-electric, with a new Mini at least.
It wants to build a new battery-electric Mini: a 3-door, fully electric Hatch model, which will go into production in 2019. This vehicle will increase the choice of Mini powertrains to include petrol and diesel internal combustion engines, a plug-in hybrid, and a battery electric vehicle. But the new Mini's electric drivetrain and batteries will be built at BMW plants in Germany before being shipped to the UK.
At that point, the parts will be integrated into the car at Plant Oxford in the UK, the main production location for the Mini 3-door Hatch. In other words, BMW is finally committing to making a fully electric version of the Mini in the UK, despite previously hinting that it would only make the car overseas due to potential long-term issues that could be brought on by Brexit (Britain’s departure from the EU).
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Keep in mind BMW could face tariffs on those parts from Germany, but at the same time, by making the model in Mini’s main plant, BMW is essentially appeasing UK officials, who have been lobbying heavily for the car to be made in the UK. BMW has said that by 2025, it wants electrified vehicles to account for up to 25 percent of its sales, although unforeseen factors caused by Brexit could affect that.
It currently produces electrified models at 10 plants worldwide, with all "significant elements of the electric drivetrain for these vehicles" coming from the company’s plants in Dingolfing and Landshut, according to BMW. The new, fully-electric Mini will be one of a series of electrified models to be launched by the BMW and Mini brands in the coming years. In 2018, for instance, we'll get the BMW i8 Roadster.
And then, the all-electric BMW X3 will arrive in 2020, followed by the BMW iNext in 2021.