The Automotive Industry, Briefly

What is BMW Doing with the i-Brand?

10.20.16 - BMW i5

Recently we’ve seen news that BMW will add the i-Brand technology to at least one Mini model and to the BMW X3. This announcement makes me wonder if BMW is going to continue to use the i-Brand as just a testing ground for the continued improvement of the parent brand and the Mini vehicles that will be the result of some of the dynamic features that can be added to any of the models, but new information has me thinking we will see more models from the i-Brand in the near future.

The i-Brand from BMW may be new to the market with the i3 and i8 only being around for a few years but with a brand as progressive as this I thought we would see a full BMW style lineup that would amaze us right out of the gate. Of course having a 3 and an 8 means there was room for more numbers to be added and more models to be built. As it turns out we just might have the next entry in the i-Brand category with the patent that’s been filed in Japan there could be an i5 on the way.

This new patent doesn’t specifically state that the new model will be called the i5, but the patent shows images of a vehicle that has a similar build to the i3 but with a longer and sleeker body and four doors. This does make sense to call it an i5 instead of the i4 as it will leave room for another model to be wedged in between the two in a way that will allow BMW to continue to grow the brand and the lineup in the i-Brand category that we’ve gotten to know and admire for the past few years.

The speculations of a new i5 model began last year when BMW reported they were reaching the final stages of a new model from this sub brand and would make decisions about the body style shortly after the announcement. This was back in December and we’ve waited nearly ten months for more information to be unveiled regarding the new model from the i-Brand. Just the announcement last December was needed because many were getting restless regarding the i-Brand and why we hadn’t seen a new model to give us at least three vehicles from this sub brand from BMW.

The new model of the i5 is expected to be on the market sometime in 2020. The question of what this vehicle will be could be answered soon enough, but the next step in getting us more excited about this lineup and sub brand is to have SUV models that are built with this technology. Even though the X3 will soon have some form of the tech installed it could be quite a conversation if we see BMW offer up a model that could be the iX3 or something similar in the future to expand the lineup, but for now we get to wait for what the i5 might actually be.



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