Premium Electric Car of the Year 2023: BMW i4
The BMW i4 is the 2023 Auto Express Premium Electric Car of the Year, with the BMW iX and Porsche Taycan commended
The EV market is changing fast, but the brilliance of the BMW i4 is underlined with a second win on the trot. A raft of fresh-faced rivals have challenged the all-electric machine over the past 12 months, but none has managed to match its blend of abilities.
While other brands have delivered bespoke designs for their electrified compact execs, BMW based the i4 on the same platform that’s used for the petrol, diesel and plug-in 4 Series Gran Coupé. As a result, the i4 is cutting edge yet reassuringly familiar. Crucially, BMW has developed a model that more than lives up to the brand’s reputation for delivering the ultimate driving machine.
There’s an i4 M50 that packs an M3-rivalling 537bhp and a new entry-level eDrive35, but it’s the mid-range eDrive40 model that’s the real star of the line-up. With 335bhp, it’s a punchy performer, while the rear-wheel-drive chassis serves up beautifully balanced and engaging handling. Yet thanks to a generous 80.7kWh and BMW’s efficient eDrive motor, it provides an anxiety-busting claimed range of 365 miles.
Elsewhere, the i4 takes its cues from the 4 Series, which means handsome styling and premium appeal inside. It also has the brand’s distinctive curved digital display screens, intuitive infotainment and loads of standard equipment. There’s room for all the family, too, while the versatile hatchback tailgate opens to reveal a useful 470-litre boot.
Yet perhaps the i4’s greatest achievement is proving that you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to deliver a class-leading electric vehicle.
BMW i4 eDrive40 Sport (£57,890)
Go for the entry-level Sport and you’ll get all the kit you’ll need, plus its smaller wheels help improve aerodynamics and deliver that impressive 365-mile range. Better still, BMW is currently offering to supply and install a free 7kW Pod Point home charger, or provide £750 towards public- charging fees when you’re out and about.
We’ve got used to the iX’s imposing looks, but its fine comfort and powerful electric drivetrain still impress. The spacious cabin looks and feels a cut above rivals’ in terms of quality, and is crammed with BMW’s latest tech. It’s also engaging to drive and promises up to 380 miles between charges.
Porsche’s first electric car is still one of the best in the business, particularly when it comes to delivering an exciting drive. There’s a choice of power outputs, including a wild Turbo S, while the Sport Turismo and Cross Turismo versions bring enhanced practicality. The Taycan is not cheap, but it feels worth every penny.
You’ll find all the information on our New Car Awards 2023 winners and the reasons why we chose them on these pages. Just follow the links below to read more…
New Car Awards 2023: the winners
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