BMW is bringing their all-new, all-electric BMW i4 to Australia in the first quarter of 2022. As electric vehicles rapidly take the performance crown from their ICE counterparts, it makes sense that the BMW i4 M50 features the famous M badge, representing the highest performance offerings from the brand.
The i4 M50 features an electric motor at the front and rear for an all-wheel-drive drivetrain, delivering 400kW of power to the sporty sedan, accelerating it from 0-100km/h in 3.9 seconds. With electric vehicles, one of the biggest questions is their range and in Australia, with our vast distances, it’s more important there’s a generous capacity on offer. Thankfully there’s a good story to tell, with BMW offering a very healthy range of 510 kilometres (WLTP).
For those who decide to buy, you’ll get 5 years of free use of the growing Chargefox charging infrastructure, helping reduce the total cost of ownership over the life of the vehicle.
When you’re in the driver’s seat, you’ll be interacting with the car’s 14.9″ control display, angled towards the driver and have access to further information on the 12.3″ information display. These displays are powered by BMW Operating System 8 software. This enables you to run Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and connect using 5G mobile technology (we expect to find a Telstra sim included).
Shipping a modern electric car means you need to respond to what the competition offers and there’s no doubt that software updates to add new features is now expected as part of the ownership experience while helping to draw new customers in. BMW is committing to deliver over-the-air, or remote Software Upgrades and offers many of the common experiences like using your smartphone as the digital key to unlock your car as you approach, check on the current state of charge and perform basic vehicle controls.
Along with the M50, BMW is also offering a longer range, a rear-wheel-drive variant of the i4 called the eDrive40. Not exactly a sexy name, but it will appeal to some with a cheaper price point and 590 kilometres of range from a single charge (WLTP).
Both models will launch in Australia during the first quarter of 2022, more information at BMW.
BMW Australia has now announced the Australian specifications and pricing detail for the all-new i4.
BMW i4 eDrive40
- M Sport Package •Adaptive M Suspension
- Comfort Access System
- M Sport Brakes
- Driving Assistant Professional
- Parking Assistant Plus
- Leather ‘Vernasca’ Upholstery
- Instrument panel in Sensatec
- 19” M Light Alloy Wheels
- Sport seats for driver and front passenger
- BMW Head-up Display
- LED headlights incl. High Beam Assistant
- Automatic tailgate operation
- Electric seat adjustment
- Ambient light
- Galvanic embellishers for controls
- Storage compartment package
- Through-loading system
- Live Cockpit Professional
- Connected Package Professional
- Smartphone Integration
- HiFi Loudspeaker System, 10 speakers
- Wireless Charging •DAB+ digital radio
- BMW IconicSounds Electric
- Chargefox 5 year unlimited charging
- Model 2 Domestic charger
- Model 3 Public charging cable
i4 M50: $124,900
The M50 spec, includes all standard inclusions from the i4 eDrive40e and adds the following:
- M Performance tuning and elements
- Lumbar support
- Seat heating (front)
- BMW Laserlight
- 16 speaker Harman/kardon surround sound system
- Electric Glass roof
- 19” M lightalloy wheels with performance tyres
- M Technology Package
- M Rear Spoiler
- Metallic paintwork
Overall it’ll be great to have another all-electric sport’s sedan in Australia and seeing BMW lend the M branding to it, showcases their seriousness about electric vehicles being the future of their performance lineup. This is similar to what Ford did when they leveraged the Mustang brand for the Mach-E.
What is interesting to compare is the price point and performance of the i4 M50, compared to the other options in this space. If you have decided you want to go electric for your next sporty 4-door, then you can really choose between the following options:
|Brand/Model||0-100km/hr||Price (A$ +on roads costs)||Range|
|Tesla Model 3 Performance||3.3s||$84,900||567km|
|BMW i4 M50||3.9s||$124,900||510km|
|Tesla Model S Plaid (coming late 2022)||2.1s||$188,515||625km (est.)|
|Porsche Taycan Turbo||3.2s||$269,100||420km|
|Porsche Taycan Turbo S||2.8s||$339,100||405km|
There are many reasons people buy the cars they do, it may be down to the design, the infotainment system or even the badge, but we can see from this comparison table, you’ll really need to ignore some key factors like price, range and performance to choose the BMW i4 M50 over the Model 3 Performance.
There’s also not much in the way of the autonomy story from BMW here, with the i4 M50 offering standard lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist, a far cry from the lane centering tech found elsewhere. You’ll also get a standard forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking and adaptive cruise control, but that’s available on many models far cheaper than this.
If you’re a die-hard BMW fan, then you’ve now got something to add to the wish list, but outside that, I think they may struggle to find long queues for that big kidney.