Exactly 50 years after its foundation, BMW M is opening the next chapter in its transformation towards electric mobility with its test drives of a concept test vehicle designed for future fully electric high-performance cars. The anniversary year has already seen the market launch of the all-electric BMW i4 M50 and the BMW iX M60. The BMW i7 M70, the first BMW M all-electric luxury saloon, is to follow as early as next year.

“On our anniversary, we are not only looking back, but above all also looking forward,” says Franciscus van Meel, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW M GmbH. “Before the end of the year, production of the BMW XM, our first high-performance car featuring a V8 M hybrid drive, will commence.”


In order to now bring together the purely electric high-performance experience and typical M dynamics, BMW M engineers based the new concept on the BMW i4 M50, which is a purely electrically powered coupe with a modified body in typical BMW M style. Its wide wheel arches allowed the integration of specifically manufactured high-performance front and rear axle designs. What's more, the front end of the concept vehicle features an adapted body strut concept taken from the BMW M3/ M4 series. 



The revolutionary high-performance drive system making its debut is an electric M xDrive four-wheel drive system with four electric motors. The fact that all four wheels are each driven by an electric motor opens up completely new possibilities. Within milliseconds, the power and torque of the spontaneously reacting electric motors can be applied so precisely, it realises a level of performance unattainable using conventional drive systems.

“Electrification opens up completely new degrees of freedom for us to create M-typical dynamics,” says Dirk Häcker, Head of Development at BMW M GmbH. “And we can already see that we can exploit this potential to the maximum, so that our high-performance sports cars will continue to offer the M-typical and incomparable combination of dynamics, agility and precision in the locally emission-free future,” says Franciscus van Meel


The four motors are connected to a central, highly integrated control unit that permanently monitors the driving condition and the driver's wishes. The ideal power transmission to the road is calculated within milliseconds from the values for the accelerator pedal position, steering angle, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, wheel speeds and other parameters. The signals are transmitted just as quickly and directly to the four motors, which are able to implement them immediately and precisely.

This detailed work is crucial to ensure that future high-performance models will also be characterised by exactly what has rendered BMW M unmistakable for the last 50 years: a linear build-up of drive power and lateral dynamics that permits controllable handling right up to the limits.

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