Monday, June 15, 2009

BMW Confirms ‘Megacity’ Electric Models For 2015


BMW’S CHAIRMAN of the Board of Management, Dr. Norbert Reithofer, has confirmed the German marque is working on a line of new battery-powered electric vehicles, dubbed ‘Megacity’, to be launched by 2015.

Despite recent talks that BMW and Fiat would form a joint project to develop a range of electric vehicles, Reithofer said the company has no plans to work with another manufacturer on the project.

“Electric engines are a key part of our technology which we want to develop ourselves,” project leader Ulrich Kranz told German magazine Auto Motor und Sport.

A handful of details were revealed during the BMW Annual Accounts Press Conference in March, noting that the Megacity would be a part of BMW’s “i project” range of near-zero emission city cars.


The Megacity car would become the second from BMW’s “i project” program, with the MINI E having been the first.

BMW is expected to announce by the end of the year whether the Megacity range will feature among the existing BMW lineup, or whether the company will launch a new subsidiary to sit under the company umbrella with Rolls Royce and MINI.

Customers will have the choice between a fully electric powertrain or an ultra-high-efficiency combustion engine. However, BMW has aspirations for the Megacity that stretch beyond mere fuel efficiency.

“With the Megacity Vehicle, we are also pursuing a radical approach toward establishing a truly sustainable value chain, from development to production and sales,” Reithofer said.