BMW’s M division recently celebrated its fiftieth anniversary with the first ever M3 Touring, yes, an M3 station wagon, and also introduced the M4 CSL. During the celebrations, special editions were shot out of the stable in celebration of the 50th anniversary, but at the same time they also talked about who would eventually be the next generation, and of course these were electric performance cars. Now, they reveal to us what has been happening in recent months on the test tracks.
The future of M, as far as is reported at this point, will consist of several fully electric M models. BMW already has an M Performance model with a fully electric system in the form of the i4 M50, but this is only the first swallow. The German’s skilled division dressed up a version of the i4 M50 and turned it into a driving laboratory to test not only heavily upgraded drivetrains under the M division’s warranty, but also new hardware and software that should close the gaps against the classic combustion models, as much as possible given the weight of the batteries and the absence The sounds of the engine (which will surely come from an artificial regulator).
“On this day, we are not only looking back, but above all also looking forward,” says Franciscus van Mille, Chairman of the Board of Management of the M Division. “Before the end of the year, production of the BMW XM, our first performance car with a hybrid drive, will begin Attached with a V8 engine. Together with our fans all over the world, we also look forward to our entry into the LMDh category of the IMSA North American Endurance Racing Series, where we will also compete with an eight-cylinder hybrid turbo engine at Daytona and other events in 2023, as well as the WEC racing series at Le Mans a year later.”
The i4 M50 pictured has camouflage stickers, wider wheel arches and enlarged front and rear axles. The camouflaged test model’s grille is reminiscent of the M4’s and that’s not the only thing the test car borrows from its siblings. For example, the updated i4 M50 also has structural reinforcements very similar to the M3 and M4 and this means that BMW is not compromising just because it is an electric vehicle. Beyond that, BMW doesn’t really elaborate on it, but it is noted that next year an electrified muscular flagship car, the i7 M70, the M Performance version of the i7 electric sedan, will be presented for the first time.
In the near term, however, the development of the electric M3 continues. Between the lines, BMW reveals the use of no less than four electric motors, which means that each wheel is driven by its own independent motor, in a technology known as M xDrive. This system is able to control each wheel individually, meaning that the amount of power released to each wheel can be calibrated within milliseconds. Until all this happens, BMW promises to continue to refine the electric M3 until it is the arrival of its conventional sister. We will live and see, in a few good years.