Sales figures for the BMW i3 electric car - which goes on sale at the end of next year - are “impossible to predict” according to Dr Harald Kruger, member of the board of management for the BMW Group.
“Although there are electric cars already on sale, there is absolutely nothing in the premium segment so far to compare it to. Environmental regulations are changing all the time too, and that could have a massive effect on the numbers,” Kruger revealed.
“All I can tell you is that we are aiming to sell two million cars a year as a group by 2016, and if I had to give a very rough guess I would say e-mobility vehicles will make up four to six per cent of the mix by 2020.”
It’s a similar story when it comes to pricing the i3 and i8. Initial rumours suggested price tags of around £35,000 and £150,000 respectively were likely, but Kruger gave little away: “We have no pricing strategy yet, this comes much later. One thing you can be sure of though is that every model BMW makes has a clear profitability plan. You might be surprised.”
When we asked Kruger why he thinks BMW can succeed in the EV market, when sales of other electric vehicles have been disappointing, he replied: “We think electric vehicles need to be sexy and very emotional. I won’t pass judgment on any rivals, but the i3 Coupe especially has that, and that’s why we’ll succeed.
“It’s also a strategic long-term move – when the market turns you need to have the right product on the market at the right time.”