New 530hp BMW i4 to be more powerful than M3 and M4: price, specs and release date

James Allen
January 25, 2021

The new BMW i4 has been shown in the final phases of testing before this new Tesla Model 3 alternative is revealed in late 2021. 

  • BMW i4 Concept teased
  • Previews new i4 saloon
  • 373-mile electric range
  • 530hp electric motors
  • 0-60mph in less than 4 seconds
  • Top speed of more than 124mph
  • Uber-minimalist cabin
  • Huge infotainment display
  • Sound effects by Hans Zimmer
  • On sale in 2022

BMW is putting the finishing touches to its fully-electric i4 four-door saloon. Here’s everything you need to know so far about BMW’s upcoming alternative to the Tesla Model 3 and the Polestar 2 electric cars.

New BMW i4 design

The BMW i4 will be a four-door coupe.

Despite the camouflage cladding on this prototype, it’s likely the new i4 will look be pretty similar to the i4 Concept (shown below). While the ultra-slim headlights and spindly wing mirrors have been ditched, other features such as the simple, flowing lines and massive kidney grille have been preserved for the production i4.

The i4 Concept will inspire the finished i4. 

Finer points of the new BMW i4’s design are hidden by a vinyl wrap, but you can bet it’ll feature plenty of blue trim on the grille, along the side sills and on the rear bumper – just like on the i4 Concept.

New BMW i4 Concept aerodynamics

To help make it slippery through the air, the BMW i4 has some clever aerodynamic devices. These reduce drag, which means the car’s motor doesn’t have to work so hard to push it through the air. The upside? You can drive further between charges.

Expect to find two large fake grilles under this prototype’s camouflage. 

With no petrol or diesel engine to cool, the large front grille has been completely closed off, and there’s also a big diffuser in the rear bumper. Even the door handles have been designed with aerodynamic efficiency in mind – rather than being protruding items, as they are on the similarly-sized BMW 4 Series, they’re flush fitting with the bodywork.

New BMW i4 interior

The i4 Concept’s cabin is packed with elegant shapes and pale colours.

BMW hasn’t revealed much about the new i4’s interior yet, though the i4 Concept and the recently revealed iX SUV (shown below) both give you a good idea of what to expect. The concept’s crystal-style surround on the rotary iDrive controller probably won’t make it to production, but the iX SUV’s huge wraparound screen on the dashboard should feature on the finished cars.

The iX’s infotainment system (shown here) should appear in the new i4, too. 

Because the BMW i4 will be similar in size to the BMW 3 Series, it should mean the i4 will be pretty spacious inside. However, the more sloping roofline – much like what you’ll get on the upcoming BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe – will likely eat into back-seat headroom.

New BMW i4 electric motors and range

The i4 Concept’s motor and battery specs will be carried over to the production model.

Just like the BMW i4 Concept, the production-ready BMW i4 is powered by a single electric motor. In its most powerful guise, BMW says the motor can produce 530hp – that’s more than you get from the 510hp twin-turbo petrol engine in the new BMW M3 Competition performance saloon or M4 Coupe. This also means it can accelerate from 0-60mph in under four seconds.

Expect the new i4 to manage more than 370 miles on a charge.

The BMW i4’s battery and claimed range specs have been carried over from the i4 Concept, too. According to BMW, the i4’s 80kWh battery pack can store enough charge for you to drive up to 373 miles, which is a bit further than the 360 miles a Tesla Model 3 Long Range can deliver.

Watch our EV range test video

The BMW i4 will also be compatible with powerful 150kW charging points – meaning you can recharge the batteries from empty to 80% full in 35 minutes.

New BMW i4 Concept driving

The BMW i4’s 80kWh battery pack may allow a good range, but it’s also very heavy – it aloe weighs 550kg. To make sure this doesn’t make the car feel like a heavy lumbering SUV, BMW has stored the batteries in the boot floor. This helps lower the car’s centre of gravity, which in theory will stop the car from leaning through tight turns.

Even better, BMW has hired composer Hans Zimmer (of Inception soundtrack fame) to produce the sound effects for the i4 – just don’t go expecting Leonardo DiCaprio to be the voice of the sat-nav…

Expect a production-ready i4 to appear sometime in late 2021.

New BMW i4 Concept price and release date

The BMW i4 is due to go on sale before the end of 2021 – and, as the car’s now in its final testing phase, it shouldn’t be much longer until the production-ready i4 is revealed. Prices haven’t been confirmed yet, though expect the entry-level BMW i4 to start from around £50,000 – which is around the same as a Polestar 2 and a Tesla Model 3 Long Range.

If you can’t wait for the BMW i4 to go on sale, see how much you can save on a new BMW electric car by visiting our BMW i3 deals page. 

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