BMW is preparing to expand its line of “i” vehicles with an electric version of the X3. According to Automotive News Europe, the new crossover is expected to wear the iX3 badge.
“In 2020 we will launch the fully electric X3. In it, X and i come together,” BMW CEO Harald Krueger told reporters.
He also confirmed that BMW has secured the naming rights to use multiple “i” badges. BMW has locked down the names i1 through i9 and iX1 to iX9, giving it plenty of room to expand its electrified lineup.
Currently, BMW offers the i3 small hatchback and the i8 plug-in hybrid sports car. The automaker wants to introduce at least two new electric cars, one of which will likely be called the i5. This car was previewed by the BMW i Vision Dynamics concept seen at the Frankfurt auto show this year. Another upcoming EV is an electric flagship that might wear the i9 badge and is expected to enter production in Germany in 2021. At some point, BMW could introduce a crossover version called the iX9. An iX8 could also arrive as a derivative of the 8 Series coupe.
This year, BMW expects to sell 100,000 electrified vehicles around the world. In addition to its “i” cars, BMW also offers plug-in versions of the 3 Series, 5 Series, 7 Series, and X5. By 2025, BMW Group wants to expand its lineup to include 25 electrified vehicles, 12 of which will be pure EVs.
Offering more electrified X models aligns with the growth BMW expects to see in the crossover space. Currently, X models make up about a third of BMW’s sales. Says Krueger: “Our model offensive is also an X-offensive. That is why I call 2018 the year of the ‘X.’”