BMW has joined rivals in announcing a big push into electrified vehicles.
The German luxury car maker said that by 2025 it plans 12 all-electric models, and 13 hybrid versions. BMW’s first electric Mini will be released in 2019. BMW’s announcement follows an earlier one from Jaguar Land Rover.
JLR’s chief executive Ralf Speth said its move was aimed at “giving customers even more choice”. JLR said every vehicle line launched from 2020 will have an all-electric or hybrid version, the first of which would be the Jaguar I-Pace, to go on sale in 2018.
BMW’s Klaus Fröhlich said: “The trend towards electric mobility is irreversible. But it will happen in different ways and at various speeds in different parts of the world. The change in China is just one example.” From 2020, he said, all BMW models will have an electrified version, and there will be a big push to expand the all-electric and hybrid model range over the subsequent five years.
The firm, Britain’s biggest carmaker, is owned by India’s Tata. In July, Chinese-owned firm Volvo said all its new models would have an electric motor from 2019, one year earlier than Jaguar’s deadline. However, both Volvo and JLR will still be manufacturing earlier models that have combustion engines.
“The internal combustion engine is state of the art,” Mr Speth said. “We will see this internal combustion engine, petrols and diesels, for many years to come.”
Jaguar said it had also engineered an electric version of the classic Jaguar E-type car, known as the E-type Zero. However, it was intended as a concept car and would not be available for sale. Jaguar’s latest announcement comes as the car industry seeks to show its green credentials in the wake of the Volkswagen emissions testing scandal and as governments take action aimed at limiting climate change.
“One thing is clear the future will be electric,” Mr Speth said. “Every new Jaguar Land Rover model line will be electrified from 2020, giving our customers even more choice. We will introduce a portfolio of electrified products across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles.”
The company has also attempted to imagine what cars will be like after 2040 with its Future-Type, a concept car that will have a voice activated steering wheel.
“This steering wheel doesn’t just stay in your car – it lives in your home and becomes your trusted companion,” Jaguar said in its press release.