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Article: BMW’s new head of R&D says next i model not due until 2020

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by ecarfan, Mar 17, 2015.

  1. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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  2. flankspeed8

    flankspeed8 Member

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    Agree with the OP. Seriousness translates into action and they are not acting. They have no excuse. Disappointed to read this.
     
  3. zag2me

    zag2me Member

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    When their market share starts to be decimated by electric vehicles in the premium space, watch them move a lot faster ;)
     
  4. Krugerrand

    Krugerrand Active Member

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    I'm not sure that they aren't serious, I think it's more a case of they simply don't know how to do it so that the resulting vehicle is at least on par with what (Tesla) is offering. They seem to know that what they are doing now isn't good enough. It also sounds as if they are stuck in 'this is how we've always done things' concerning the whole procedure - in that they don't appear to be agile and able to make decisions quickly, and that's why it's going to take them until 2020. Although, things can always change.
     
  5. Phil K

    Phil K Member

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    I am disappointed and also surprised to learn this. I thought with the i3(and arguable the i8), they're committed to EV. And such a well established large auto company shouldn't take so long to develop and produce new models.
     
  6. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    They need an i5 that can compete with their M5 and the P85D. That would put them in direct competition with Tesla at that point.
     
  7. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

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    But BMW does not want their "i" series cars to compete with their ICE cars. It would cost them profits because their ICE profit margin is certainly higher than their EV profit margin.

    They are stuck in the past, with short range thinking.
     
  8. Twiglett

    Twiglett Single pedal driver

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    They also can't afford to compete directly with Tesla, hence the i3 being an upmarket Leaf.
    BMW know they don't currently have the capability of beating Tesla with the current pipeline.
     
  9. astrotoy

    astrotoy Member

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    I believe that BMW has long considered Mercedes to be their rival. I remember when BMW was clearly the second level car from Germany, more sporty than MB with their 1600 and 2000 models. They pushed hard to catch and surpass Mercedes in technology and head on sales at the highest luxury level. When Lexus came out of nowhere in 1989 with their LS series, it took quite a while for BMW to catch up (as well as Lexus to become complacent, although they are changing also. Audi is also coming up as a contender). However, these big automakers have a very difficult time moving fast. And they definitely benefit from the competition which also can't move fast. At this point (end of first quarter 2015), a real Tesla competitor for 2018 model year (fall 2017) is about impossible for them. They also have to anticipate what Tesla is going to have for 2018, not what they have now. Much like the flu vaccine sometimes they are right, but sometimes, like this year, they are wrong!

    For BMW, MB, Toyota/Lexus, their bread and butter are ICE, with hybrids coming a distant second. I think they just hope that Tesla goes away.
     
  10. eye.surgeon

    eye.surgeon Member

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    BNW also has to consider the European market much more than Tesla does. Electricity is VERY expensive in no small part due to heavy adaptation of wind and solar power, and at least in the home market, higher speed limits make electric cars less appealing due to shorter range.
     
  11. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Do you have "Executive Mental Range Anxiety" regarding BMW? ;)
     
  12. Spidy

    Spidy Member

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    Well, I have not seen a single Tesla in Germany so far (apart from the one at some e-mobility event)

    No electric car is going to beat the M5 soon. Maybe in acceleration, but not as a sports car that can go 250-300km/h for some time. Even the Koenigsegg Regera is a Hybrid.

    Yeah, but gas costs even more. Which is why I think that money is going to be the big selling point and that's why BMW focuses on hybrids. Also commutes here are shorter, so it will cover the whole or at least significant amount of the commute for a lot of people.
     
  13. bluenation

    bluenation Member

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    disappointing to hear, but maybe they'll change their minds, who knows.
     
  14. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN P65513, Model 3 Res Holder

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    Too bad. By the time they have an i5 out, Tesla Model 3 would have taken a big bite out of the 3-series's market share for a couple of years.
     
  15. AustinPowers

    AustinPowers Total Smeghead

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    Correct on all accounts. Even though I have seen a few Model S over here, but 90% of those were test drive vehicles of our Frankfurt Tesla store.
    I think even Tesla underestimated the challenges of the European markets (other than the heavily subsidized Norway and Netherlands), and Germany in particular.

    I don't think BMW sees Tesla as a threat at all, at least not on the grand scale.
    Let us try and be realistic for a moment:
    Where do BEVs sell (reasonably) well at the moment? Only in markets where there are massive subsidies. In most markets the BEV segment is miniscule.
    Who at the moment can realistically afford a Model S? With naked starting prices well above even many well equipped Mercs, Audis, Lexus's and BMWs?

    Even if one wants a BEV, at least over here there are much better choices than a Tesla, at least until Model 3 arrives. As Spidy said, commutes are generally quite short for most people, in many areas people use public transport, so a BEV has to be either cheaper or more practical to be a viable alternative. An 80K+ Euro car the size of an S-class doesn't fit that description.
    And for those who buy a luxury car like a large Merc/Audi/Lexus/BMW because they travel long distances on a regular basis, like travelling salesmen who make up a large percentage of the left lane traffic on the Autobahn, a BEV is not an attractive alternative anyway, as they are in a constant hurry and don't have the time or the nerves to plan their trips around charging locations plus lose time for charging.

    So no, I don't think the big automakers will have to worry about Tesla or BEVs becoming a threat for a very long time to come. Sales numbers speak for themselves.
    The picture will look different when there are BEVs with 500 mile realistic range available for under 50K Euro/Dollar. But is that realistic before 2020 - even from Tesla? I dare say no (even though I would hope otherwise).
     
  16. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    What do you really mean by "a very long time"? In the next paragraph you mention 2020 as an optimistic target year for "affordability" or "competitiveness". I think it's rather more realistic, than optimistic. And IMO not "a very long time" in to the future.

    If I were the head of one of die Großen Drei I'd be very worried indeed.
     
  17. AustinPowers

    AustinPowers Total Smeghead

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    Why should they be worried?
    Do you really believe that worldwide demand for BEVs will suddenly explode in a few years time?
    And even if, they have offerings to cater for the EV market already. OK, mainly hybrids, but I think to get people to embrace the EV idea on a broader basis, a hybrid can be a good first step.
    Remember, Norway is a highly atypical market when it comes to cars.

    About your questions. I said "a very long time" but could also have said "quite a while" or something else to that effect. If I were pressed to be specific, I would say "for at least the next decade" (and I truly believe that).
    I mentioned 2020 because that was the OP's point about BMW not releasing an i5 (or other i Model) before that year.
     
  18. porc

    porc Member

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    No, its not hard to dump a whole lot of battery in the car, to get a similar range like Tesla does. The problem is not that they cant compete with Tesla, the problem is that they dont know how to make an electric car that satisfies the transportation demands of the 21st century. Its a energy density and cost issue, not a "I cant compete with Tesla" one.
     
  19. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    Yes I really do believe so. Note that this pertains to demand and that the actual shifting out of the entire fleet of personal cars will take quite some time, since the life cycle of cars are long and since it's a high capital investment for people. Electric cars are at this moment at the tipping point and in just 2-3 years we will be beyond the tipping point. What right now looks like slow, gradual, linear growth in demand and uptake is actually the bottom part of an exponential curve, but this is both hard to recognize early as well as hard for us humans to conceptualize (humans in general have a hard time grasping phenomena with exponential growth patterns, we like to think in linear terms intuitively).

    You argument is very similar to how people historically have argued when it comes to smart phones, internet for personal use, ICE cars (100 years ago), personal computers, TV etc. etc: "Sure it's a new technology, it's good, it's useful, it's better than what we have today but the uptake will be slow and gradual, it will takes decades before it becomes mainstream". Therein lies the fallacy.

    chart01.jpg

    (from The Law of Accelerating Returns | KurzweilAI).

    With EVs we also have a perfect storm forming: Global warming is a huge problem and EVs are part of the solution, large parts of the world's population (Asia, India, Africa) are experiencing unprecedented growth in income and quality of life and the personal transportatino market globally has enormous potential. All the while battery prices are coming down every year and production is increased, with it comes economies of scale that drives prices further down.
     
  20. svp6

    svp6 Member

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    If you think electricity is expensive in Europe, wait until you see the bill at the gas station....
     

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