- BMW’s latest design concept represents a platform that will support the brand’s next generation of electric vehicles.
- The first electric vehicles based on the “New Class” architecture are scheduled to go into production in 2025.
- “With the BMW Vision Neue Klasse we are combining all the innovative forces that BMW has, on the electrical side, on the digital side and of course this car is also being prepared for the circular economy industry,” BMW boss Oliver Zipse told CNBC.
German automaker BMW unveiled a highly anticipated electric concept car on Saturday, saying the so-called “Vision Neue Klasse” marks the start of a new era for the company.
BMW’s latest design represents a platform that will support the brand’s next generation of electric vehicles. The first electric vehicles based on the “New Class” architecture are scheduled to go into production in 2025.
The new electric vehicle offering includes BMW’s sixth generation of battery cells, which the company says will improve both the charging speed and range of the Neue Klasse platform by up to 30%. According to BMW, as a result of these measures, the overall efficiency of the vehicle would increase by up to 25%.
“With the BMW Vision Neue Klasse we are combining all the innovative forces that BMW has, on the electric side, on the digital side and of course this car will also be prepared for the circular economy industry,” BMW boss Oliver Zipse told CNBC’s Arabile Gumede.
“These cars will be on the road in just two years and we are taking BMW as a whole into a new era of innovation and sustainability. That is the purpose of our show at the IAA,” said Zipse.
The Vision Neue Klasse is scheduled to make its public debut in the coming days at the IAA motor show in Munich, where BMW also has its headquarters. The IAA is one of the world’s largest mobility trade fairs.
“We believe that electromobility will be the world’s largest growth segment for the automotive industry and want to play a leading role here,” said Zipse.
An employee checks the logo of a car during final inspection on a production line at the German car manufacturer’s BMW plant in Leipzig on October 20, 2022.
Ronny Hartmann | Afp | Getty Images
The BMW boss predicted that battery-electric vehicles will account for 15% of the automaker’s global sales by the end of 2023 and that “we will continue to increase this figure next year and the year after.”
Frank Weber, BMW’s chief development officer, said the Neue Klasse was a “big technological leap” for the car maker.
In early August, BMW said it expected continued challenges in the coming months due to supply chain issues and stubbornly high inflation. Nevertheless, the company raised its full-year outlook for profit margin before interest and taxes in the automotive segment.
BMW shares have risen around 13% since the beginning of the year.
When asked about the presence of Chinese electric vehicle giants at the Munich auto show and whether he was worried that Chinese exports to Europe could affect BMW’s business, Zipse replied: “No, we are not afraid at all.”
“It is a sign of attractiveness when global players like the Chinese, who have the largest car market in the world, come here to Munich and show what they want. It’s much more than cars, it’s a tech show, it’s an innovation fair,” said Zipse.
“And I think it’s super exciting to have everyone here, the Americans, the Europeans and now the Chinese. You can already hear it in my words, I’m more excited and not scared at all, and that’s it.” Good thing we have a show that attracts a lot of competition. That’s great.”