BMW announces hybrid plans

There is no doubt that German luxury car maker BMW realises the potential of the hybrid market. With this potential linked to lower CO2 emissions, it is not surprising that the company wants to create a hybrid version of each of its models.

The CEO of BMW North America, Ludwig Willisch, said: "With the introduction of every new model there will be a plug-in hybrid version of that, too." The first model from the plug-in electric vehicle hybrid program will be the X5 xDrive40e, with its 313hp powertrain. This car can accelerate from 0-62mph in 6.8 seconds, which means it is no slouch. It is also economical, returning 85.6mpg and delivering 450Nm of torque and CO2 emissions of 77g/km.

Mr Willisch was questioned about the existence of the i5 and i7, which it is rumoured will be models between the i3 and the i8; in response, he said that there were no plans in the pipeline for such models.

BMW is not surprisingly looking at the green market with a view to selling more cars. The company already has two winners in this sector: the super-fast i8, which is a one-of-a-kind supercar, and the i3. Asked whether he saw Tesla as a competitor in this lucrative market, Mr Willisch replied: "I wouldn't say I don't see any competition. But I still see that a BMW 5-Series and a Tesla are totally different animals."