BMW Group strengthens its electrification efforts, focusing on BEVs and PHEVs, but not giving up on the hydrogen fuel cell option.

BMW Group is approaching a previous goal of selling 500,000 plug-in electric cars (PHEV and BEV), which should happen within the next several months.

The new goal, announced by CEO Oliver Zipse at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show, is to reach one million at some point in 2021.

Zipse boasted also that BMW is the top plug-in player in Germany and that already 3/4 of BMW Group sales in Norway are plug-ins.

“By the end of 2021, we aim to have a total of one million electrified vehicles on the roads. We are already right at the forefront of electromobility. No manufacturer has delivered more electrified cars to customers in Germany so far this year than the BMW Group. In Norway, three out of every four new BMW Group vehicles sold have an electrified drive train.”

BMW intends to achieve its goals by a deep refresh of its entire plug-in lineup and introduction of several all-new all-electric models. In total, 25 electrified models will be available in 2023 (more than half to be BEVs).

Interesting are official forecasts, on which BMW bases its strategy:

  • over 50% of new premium car sales in China will be BEVs in 2030
  • in Europe and the U.S., the BEV share (in the premium segment) is expected at half of China's result (25%)

"Looking ahead to the next decade, Zipse expects electromobility to develop at different rates around the world – due to the differences in infrastructure, customer driving profiles and political frameworks. According to BMW Group forecasts, customer demand should ensure that over 50 percent of new vehicle registrations in China’s premium segment will be pure battery-electric vehicles (BEV) in 2030. The figure for Europe will be only about half that number. The US, the world’s second largest vehicle market, will be at about the same level as Europe."

According to BMW, part of the equation might be hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles - this is why the company presents a new BMW i Hydrogen NEXT development car and hints at fleet tests in 2022:

"Hydrogen fuel cell technology could be a real solution, especially for long distances. The BMW Group expects demand for this technology to increase in the second half of the next decade and will be launching a test fleet of fuel cell vehicles in 2022. The company will present the BMW i Hydrogen NEXT development vehicle at this year’s IAA."