BMW iNEXT Concept previewed ahead of its debut this year



The iNext will be one of 12 electric vehicles BMW will launch by 2025.

In this teaser image, BMW is giving us a glimpse at the design of the iNext electric vehicle due in 2021.

BMW's chairman of the board, Harald Krüger, announced the iNEXT during Thursday's annual general meeting as a new technological flagship of the BMW brand, which will incorporate all the advancements in road mobility made of recent years.

"The iNext project is our building kit for the future", he said. We've heard that it would be some sort of SUV.

The iNext, he said, would be fully electric, powered by fifth-generation battery technology giving it a range of about 700 kilometres, fully connected and would also offer a new level of automated driving.

BMW offered a glimpse of its futuristic self-driving iNext auto as the automaker seeks to gain momentum in the race to overtake rival Mercedes-Benz in luxury sales. Instead it will come with Level 3 capability that demands the driver monitor progress and be ready to takeover, if required.

As for the interface technology, BMW hinted at the possibilities with its i Future Interaction unveiled at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show. That said, the sketch does confirm that the iNext will be in the form of a crossover, which is something BMW has not previously acknowledged. The highlight was a gesture control system called AirTouch that enables control of entertainment, navigation and communication functions using purely hand gestures.

Underpinning the iNext will be the BMW Group's CLAR modular platform designed for large cars, and production will take place at the automaker's main plant located close to its Munich headquarters. The iNext is scheduled to become available for sale to customers in 2021.

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