BMW Group, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi AG each produce an array of electric and hybrid offerings. While some of these automakers' vehicles might appear similar on paper, the technical underpinnings and EV strategies behind them are incredibly different.
The first out of these manufacturers to the EV party was none other than BMW. Releasing the i3 in May 2014, BMW has taken an early adopter approach to the silent powertrain. After the turn of the decade, the Bavarian automaker introduced several new EVs to the U.S. market, including the i4, iX, i7, and the i5, which will be available this fall.
While BMW Group has been delivering multiple well-regarded EV models, the automaker predicts that half of its sales will be electric by 2030. In other words, BMW hasn't pledged to go fully electric by a specific date. That said, BMW's upcoming Neue Klasse EV platform is set to debut, plus the manufacturer recently made a $1.7 billion EV investment into its Spartanburg, South Carolina-based manufacturing facility.
In a push for more EV sales, BMW's sub-brand, Mini, is taking a more aggressive EV approach with three upcoming electric models. With new exterior and interior designs, Mini can reestablish itself as the premier offering for high-end city cars.
Audi is also adopting electric vehicles in several vehicle segments, and the brand is currently working on adopting a new naming convention for its lineup. Audi's electric products will be designated with even numbers, whereas internal combustion engine models will feature odd numbers. Audi currently offers the Q4 e-tron, Q8 e-tron, and e-tron GT. There will be a Q6 and A6 e-tron available next year.
Out of the three, Mercedes is taking the most intrepid approach. Mercedes-Benz says it will be fully electric where market conditions allow, and all of its new vehicle architectures will be electric from 2025 on. The Mercedes team estimates that 70 percent of its vehicle sales will be attributed to EVs at the turn of the decade.