The BMW Group’s new technology flagship is blazing a trail for innovations in the fields of electric mobility and digitalisation. Fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology enables locally emission-free driving pleasure with electric all-wheel drive and a long operating range. The BMW iX is based on a new future toolkit covering various development fields – the on-board network architecture, software, digital services, connectivity, and automated driving functions. The advances achieved as a result can be seen in the latest generation of the iDrive control/operating system, exceptionally efficient energy management and numerous innovative driver assistance systems.
The BMW iX is a modern Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) that has been designed from the inside out and redefines the idea of interior spaciousness and luxury. The BMW Group has set a high bar for sustainability with the vehicle concept, materials selection, raw materials extraction and manufacturing of the BMW iX. The model variants available from launch are powered by one electric motor at the front axle and another at the rear axle, together producing a system output of 385 kW in the BMW iX xDrive50 (electric power consumption combined as per WLTP: 23.0 – 19.8 kWh/100 km; CO2 emissions: 0 g/km) and 240 kW in the BMW iX xDrive40 (electric power consumption combined as per WLTP: 22.5 – 19.4 kWh/100 km; CO2 emissions: 0 g/km).
The BMW iX redefines the successful SAV concept. It is the first model based on a new, modular, scalable toolkit on which the future of the BMW Group will be built. The development and production of the BMW iX follow an all-encompassing approach to sustainability involving compliance with strict environmental and social standards in the extraction of raw materials, plus the use of electricity from renewable sources and a high proportion of recycled materials in the mix. The resulting carbon footprint is stated in a validation document endorsed by independent auditors. The certificate for the BMW iX xDrive40, for instance, shows its global warming potential is around 45 per cent lower than that of a Sports Activity Vehicle with a comparable diesel engine over 200,000 kilometres of use.
BMW iX: electric all-wheel drive, well-balanced driving characteristics.
The BMW iX model variants available from launch are equipped with an electric motor at both the front and rear axle, creating an electric all-wheel-drive system. The motors generate a combined output of 385 kW in the BMW iX xDrive50, enabling it to sprint to 100 km/h from rest in 4.6 seconds. The drive system in the BMW iX xDrive40 puts maximum output of 240 kW on tap and propels the car from 0 to 100 km/h in 6.1 seconds.
The efficient powertrain technology and high energy density of the high-voltage batteries result in sufficient operating range for long-distance journeys; the WLTP-calculated figures are up to 630 kilometres for the BMW iX xDrive50 and up to 425 kilometres for the BMW iX xDrive40.
The body structure, design principle and chassis tuning of the BMW iX are geared to providing both superb ride comfort and sporty handling. Thanks to its well-balanced driving characteristics, the iX feels solid and comfortable on the road, yet also exudes fleet-footed agility. The aluminium spaceframe construction and the Carbon Cage’s use of carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) in the roof, flanks and rear serve to minimise weight. A raft of aerodynamics measures helps to achieve a Cd of 0.25. The electric all-wheel drive is combined with fast-acting and precise near-actuator wheel slip limitation. The chassis technology can be upgraded as an option by adding two-axle air suspension, Integral Active Steering or Sport brakes.
Innovative driver assistance systems, luxurious interior ambience.
The BMW iX comes with the most extensive spread of driver assistance systems ever fitted as standard on a BMW, along with a wealth of extra innovations. The front collision warning system, for instance, now detects oncoming traffic when turning left (in countries where vehicles drive on the right) as well as cyclists and pedestrians when turning right.
The BMW iX has been designed comprehensively from the inside out. Its interior has been created to provide quality of life and personal well-being. Vast amounts of room and newly developed seats with integral head restraints set the tone for the luxurious ambience. The absence of a centre tunnel creates extra legroom, plus sufficient space for storage areas and a centre console designed in the style of a high-quality piece of furniture.
2022 BMW iX xDrive40 – South African Version Front View 3/4
On the outside, the clearly structured, reduced design language, the imposing body styling and the numerous precisely crafted details bring the progressive interpretation of luxury to the fore. One of the highlights of the body design is the almost completely blanked off BMW kidney grille, whose surface is the product of innovative manufacturing techniques and incorporates camera and radar sensors.
Monitored raw materials production, across-the-board green power for manufacturing, high proportion of natural and recycled materials.
The BMW Group procures the cobalt and lithium required for the high-voltage batteries from controlled sources in Australia and Morocco, before supplying them to the battery cell manufacturers. As in the production of the overall vehicle at BMW Group Plant Dingolfing, the battery cells are manufactured using exclusively green power from certified sources. And since February 2021 the company has bought in aluminium manufactured using electricity from solar energy plants. The importance placed on conserving resources in the production of the BMW iX is highlighted by the high proportion of secondary aluminium and recycled plastic used. The car’s interior features FSC-certified wood, leather tanned with olive leaf extracts and other natural materials. Among the raw materials used for the floor coverings and mats are recovered fishing nets.
Electric motors: enhancing dynamism, reducing the use of critical materials.
Added to which, the electric motors for the BMW iX are marked out by a design that enables the use of rare earths to be avoided. They work according to the principle of a current-excited synchronous motor. The excitation of the rotor in the BMW iX motors is not induced by fixed permanent magnets, but the feed-in of electric energy. This removes the need for the critical materials used to manufacture magnets, and the BMW Group is therefore not reliant on their availability.
This special design also has a positive effect on the motors’ performance characteristics. The precisely controlled excitation of the rotor using electric power enables peak torque to be on tap in full immediately on pulling away. And – unlike with electric motors of conventional design – that torque is maintained over an extremely broad rev band. The defining trait of the driving experience on board the BMW iX is, then, power development that is not only lightning fast but also unusually consistent, underscoring the car’s brand-typical sporting excellence.
2022 BMW iX xDrive40 – South African Version Interior
Efficient drive system and the latest battery technology increase range.
The electric motor, transmission and power electronics of the BMW iX come together as a highly integrated package within a single housing. This compact construction also benefits the drive system’s efficiency. Indeed, further boosted by optimised aerodynamics and intelligent lightweight design, the BMW iX posts standout efficiency for its segment. The result is average electric power consumption in the WLTP cycle of less than 21 kWh per 100 kilometres for the BMW iX xDrive50 and under 20 kWh per 100 kilometres in the case of the BMW iX xDrive40.
Like the electric motors, power electronics and charging technology for the BMW iX, its high-voltage batteries are also the product of fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology. They are positioned low down in the vehicle floor as an integral component of the body. The gravimetric energy density of the lithium-ion batteries has been increased by around 20 per cent again over the previous-generation battery.
The battery cells are manufactured according to precise specifications from the BMW Group and integrated into model-specific high-voltage batteries. The BMW iX xDrive50 is therefore fitted with a battery with a gross energy content of over 100 kWh at BMW Group Plant Dingolfing, while the battery unit for the BMW iX xDrive40 has a gross energy content of more than 70 kWh. This gives the BMW iX xDrive50 a range of 630 kilometres in the WLTP test cycle. And the WLTP-calculated range of the BMW iX xDrive40 is 425 kilometres.
New technology toolkit underpins further advances towards automated driving.
The new technology toolkit making its debut in the BMW iX also provides the platform for significant progress in the areas of automated driving and digital services. For example, the level of computing power has been developed to process 20 times the data volume of previous models. As a result, around double the amount of data from vehicle sensors can be processed than was previously possible.
Fresh design for a new driving experience.
The BMW iX is leading the way for a future generation of cars with which the company is redefining sustainability, driving pleasure and what it means to be premium. This trailblazing character is clearly expressed in the car’s design, which has been developed from the inside out. The BMW iX has therefore been created to provide quality of life and wellbeing for drivers and passengers.
2022 BMW iX xDrive40 – South African Version Rear View 3/4
The clear and minimalist design of its exterior showcases a new form of mobility geared squarely to the needs of the vehicle’s occupants. Its interior offers those on board innovative options for using the time during a journey – and enjoying relaxation, safety, security, and a new form of luxury in the process.