Raft of new BMW hybrids revealed with up to 50 miles of electric-only range
BMW has just unveiled its fourth generation of plug-in hybrid cars at the Geneva Motor Show, which are faster and can go further on electric power alone than the Bavarian brand's current brigade of hybrids.
The new models are the X3 xDrive30e, the 745e, the 330e saloon, the X5 xDrive45e, 530e saloon and 225xe Active Tourer. More sensible naming conventions have yet to be announced.
Sechszylinder hybrid bitte
Of the six new models, it's the X5 that gets the longest electric-only range, at a shade under 50 miles (80km). In its new xDrive 45e form the X5 will get from 0-60mph in 5.6 seconds thanks to a six-cylinder petrol engine combined with an electric motor, together churning out 394bhp. It gets about 134mpg on the new WLTP tests.
The facelifted (and toothy) 7 Series also gets the X5's new six-cylinder plug-in hybrid setup, again with 394bhp, but with a range of between 34 and 36 miles depending on whether you've got the car in sport mode or not. BMW's also sticking the plug-in tech in the long wheelbase 7 Series, and also the four-wheel-drive long wheelbase 7 Series.
With us so far? Basically if you still want some form of 7 Series after that questionable facelift, there's a good chance you can get it in hybridised form. Just stay inside the car where you can't see it.
Vierzylinder hybrid bitte und danke mit Pommes
Right, that's the silky smooth six-cylnder models out of the way – on to the four-cylinder hybrids.
The 530e saloon is the range leader of the four-pots – with an electric-only distance of around 40 miles (64km) possible from the 252hp setup – that's up from 29 miles in the current 530e. Woop.
More exciting is the hybrid version of the much-raved-about new 3 Series saloon, the 330e. This'll dash from 0-60mph in six seconds flat, will do 37 miles (60km) on electricity alone and has 252bhp. It has something called an XtraBoost function too, which presumably increases acceleration for a short space of time by dumping Currywurst ketchup straight into the intake valves. Or something.
The new-ish X3 also gets some hybrid love with the same 252bhp powertrain as the 3 Series, except it'll do 0-60mph in 6.5 seconds and only go 30 miles (50km) on electric power alone. It'll apparently get 117mpg as well, which is clearly nonsense.
Oh, and there's a hybrid four-wheel-drive version of the 2 Series Active Tourer. But who cares.
Und jetzt, die 7er mit den grossen Zähnen
Still with us? Praise be. It's actually good to see BMW adding a dose of electric-only range and a bit more poke to their plug-in hybrid line-up, which will no doubt suit you if you have a short commute and can easily charge the car both ends of it.
Now whatever you do, don't look at the new 7 Series. It'll eat your soul.